It is amazing how rapidly areas of the world have abandoned regular telephone service and exclusively use cellular phones and email for communications.

Statistics quoted by the New York Times indicate 40 percent of adults living in poverty only use cellular phones, compared with more than 20 percent of adults with higher incomes. Also, about half of the young and middle-aged are almost exclusively cellular-only users.

It seems that the lowest concentrations of cellular phones are with the seniors, like this writer; and many of us are becoming increasingly concerned that home telephones will go the way of rotary dial telephones.

In Tallahassee, Fla., within the past decade, the local telephone company has gone through a number of reorganizations, a bankruptcy, and now is CenturyLink, which appears to want to sign everyone up for “High–Speed Internet Services.” And all the communication companies emphasize the “benefit” of having constantly at your fingertips a communications device that people can carry all the time.

From my contacts with neighbors and friends I find that most of them were perfectly comfortable with the answering machine (the most-used device of a decade ago), which allowed them to think about the probable substance of the call before answering. And we had the option to ignore the frustration of sales pitches.

A couple of years ago I had been satisfactorily using AOL for more than a decade, but increasingly when I had a problem I had difficulty understanding the technical advisors, who sounded to be halfway around the world. I was also aware of the pleasure that many people appeared to get from their cell phones. And I had accumulated a considerable amount of telephone stock over the decades.

I went to see Verizon. The information and sales area was very crowded and there was a lot of noise. I finally got someone to talk with. In due time I tried out several cell phones, bought one and signed up for two years of Verizon services.

Almost immediately I had problems with both email and the cell phone, as it was not compatible with my hearing aids. I returned the cell phone to Verizon, and I continued to have problems with email while I was in North Carolina and in Maine. Technicians worked hours on my computer, but it was frustrating.

Finally I wrote the president of Verizon. And I got a response; someone was able to reprogram my computer, and since then, email has been relatively satisfactory. Almost every month, however, I had strange charges on my bill; and usually after I went to Verizon, they made corrections.

Recently, CenturyLink — the present local telephone company — offered low-priced telephone and Internet services. I have used it for several months, but when I ask about connections while I am in North Carolina and Maine I am told that what I have will probably work, but I had better inquire when I get there.

This is frustrating. I am now approaching four score and 10 years and had an eventful life: surviving World War II as a Navy pilot, numerous degrees, involvement as a science advisor to Congress, the United Nations and World Bank on energy and environmental matters.

For the past decade I have written numerous articles analyzing how the world has changed during my lifetime, and proposing potential risks and benefits as we project into the future.

Being able to communicate by phone and email is essential to my well-being, and I believe it is useful, since I receive considerable comments and invitations to discuss my views with many organizations.

For now, I would appreciate it if anyone who may have had similar experiences as I have had with evolving communication devices might contact me with advice as to alternatives to mate mobile telephone services with hearing aids.

We, the hearing-impaired, require cell phone companies to create devices that are sensible, affordable, can be handled with ease, and personnel who help us match with what is most effective for us. Increasingly these instruments are becoming a lifeline for a few; but as humanity ages, this is going to become a greater need.

Thanks for your patience and consideration.

Dr. Lloyd V. Stover is a scientist and attorney and is the elder member of an increasingly extended family that he would hope to continue being in touch with. He may be contacted via email at: