The democratization of opportunity

When I was a kid, a lot of my friends took piano lessons. Once a week, their parents would shuffle them off to some retired teacher’s house for an hour to learn how to play “Mary had a little lamb” or something similar. Most of my friends were living a comfortable lower middle class life, which meant they didn’t have a piano at home. This meant that their piano access was limited to that once a week visit – no practicing in between sessions unless they hit the local bar with dad. (For the record, it’s not cool to take an 8 year old to a bar)

Last night, I was reminded how much the world has changed thanks to technology.

I was sitting on the couch with my 3 year old daughter watching cartoons. One of the characters was playing piano, her newest interest. She said “Daddy, I want to learn to play the piano”.

My iPad happened to be sitting next to me, so I popped open the App Store, searched for “piano”, found a free piano app and downloaded it. Within less than a minute, we went from interest to action. She banged away on that piano app for 15 minutes; a stunning victory for a 3 year old.

Access is no longer a hinderance.