The growing human dependence on technology
Technology has done a lot for human beings - The growing human dependence on technology introduction. Without the development in technology it is possible that the pyramids would never have been built and neither would we be able to communicate with each other from remote places all over the world. Some say that these technological advances such as the internet and cellular phones are a boon on society and humankind yet there are also those detractors who say that it is has not simplified life in so much as it has complicated matters. It is hard to imagine life without email nowadays.
The only efficient means of communication, with efficient meaning that the message is delivered within seconds, is either through the cellular phone or through email via the internet (Luke 5). It is even more impossible to imagine how people could work under circumstances that denied them access to the latest communication technologies or even technology at all. Yet somehow, there was really a time when people where not at the beck and call of their cellular phones and a time when nobody really felt the urge to keep checking the mailbox every five minutes for fear of missing an email.
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There was a time when people actually drove to the store or entered a store and talked with the attendants before buying something (Goldman 3). Ordering shoes and bags or other electronic items was done by going to a shop and not by going online and surfing online as it is done today (Goldman 3). Friends and lovers were met and made by going to social functions and parties instead of by checking out somebody’s myspace profile or advertising on online personals.
While those practices are still being done by certain individuals, the growth of the internet and the wide array of services that it offers have dramatically altered the manner by which people interact with one another and also the manner by which individuals lead their daily lives. As enunciated in Power up, Don’t Power Down: Barring students form cell phones, my space, and other communication technologies, “The convenience and accessibility that the internet offers makes it an ideal replacement for all the previous time and energy consuming endeavors” (Fretcher 31).
With the number of people who are connected to the internet growing everyday, it is but a natural consequence that more and more services are being offered online ranging from dating, shopping, research and entertainment. In understanding how this newfound online lifestyle has changed our lives, it is important to understand the lures that are online that make it such a tempting alternative to doing this the time consuming and energy expending tasks (Fretcher 31). The internet provides everything online. Everything a person can desire or want is available online.
Romance can be found through chatting or through online personals while intrigue can also be found on popular blog spots. Food is readily available for order online and so are clothes and other items (Goldman 3). In short, there is nothing that cannot be found online and all a person needs to do is point and click. This is the lure of the online life and this is the reason why more and more people are leading the online life. It is convenient. It is time saving. It does not require one to expend a lot of energy. In certain cases, it also allows a person to work more efficiently and become more productive.
From the standpoint of privacy, the internet offers virtual anonymity to anybody who goes online. All of this is offered online thanks to the great improvements in electronic and communications technology. As the developments in the electronics and communications technology continues to improve and advance, it will no longer be far off to imagine a world where nobody is walking the streets and everyone is hooked up to their computers interacting with each other in a world where they can be their own gods and dictate their own destinies without even breaking a sweat.
Instead of just seeing an image of another person online, it may actually be possible to experience the sensation of feeling and touching that person. At this point technology becomes a scary concept. I fear that the whole world would come to a stop if the computers would fail for some reason because that is how dependent we have become on technology (Rees 233). The threat of the Millennium Bug sent Tremors into every household and business empire throughout the world.
People took all of their money from their accounts and dug shelters in the ground stocked up wall to wall with the necessities to prepare for the Millennium Bug bug. Billions of dollars were spent to try and prevent computers all over the world from crashing (Surowiecki 205). Governments spent countless hours creating back up plans if the Millennium Bug did indeed hit. The world held their breath on New Years Eve not because they were thrilled about the coming of the Millennium but because everyone was in anticipation to as to whether everything that we did prevented the coming of the Millennium Bug (Rees 233).
WE prevented nothing. There was no Millennium Bug. It was a product of our schizophrenic imagination to create such a monster that would bring upon us the end of days; a product of our fears that we cannot live without technology. I am not an advocate of technology as my paper suggests. Instead I am throwing caution in the wind and am suggesting that we use technology with caution and prevent the creation of a society that is not dependent upon technology to live.
To be able to live without worrying about technology failing you, to be able to create a report without worrying about what to do when your computers freezes or a blackout happens (Surowiecki 205). Dependency upon everything that runs on electricity can create ignorance it may even leave to the loss of tradition and the changing of culture. In fact new cultures rooted upon technology are arising today in Japan and in the U. S (Surowiecki 205). The fact that companies always release new products is also the reason why these flaws and defects are not quickly uncovered.
Any flaw or defect in the design or negative consequences that the device brings can quickly be addressed by manufacturers and developers and a new improved version of the technological device is quickly developed and introduced to the public (Goldman 39). In doing so, companies actually even make more money because the public readily consumes whatever new and improved device is introduced. It all boils down to the financial incentives once again. As mentioned in the beginning, the race to develop and introduce the next big thing has caused deterioration in the quality of the products that are being introduced (Goldman 37).
Glitches and bugs are not uncovered during the developmental stage because of the pressures to meet deadlines or get the lead over competitors who can readily assume or develop similar technologies. Glitches and bugs however are the least of our worries because the same problems can also affect things which have more serious consequences. The latest technologies could carry life threatening side effects and consequences that were not discovered during the developmental stage because of the race and pressure to compete at the rapid pace as necessitated by today’s markets (Goldman 37).
The newest global positioning systems could have weak security systems that can easily be hacked and manipulated (Goldman 37). All these worries and negative consequences are possibilities that have always been around but have not really been a problem until recently when companies decided that the financial incentives were just too good an opportunity to pass on. There are some things that we really don’t need in life. We must learn to lessen our dependencies on technology and live (if possible) without using them too much.
Our ancestors were able to live without microwave ovens and television I don’t see why we can’t. This all may just be future talk but one thing is certain. Today’s society has become so dependent on the benefits that technology has brought in making online life possible that we have come to a point of no return where we can no longer imagine life without it. If you think otherwise, turn off your cellular phone and unhook the jack of your computer and see how long you can survive without it.