Wednesday, October 17, 2007

How has technology changed us?

Someone asked me if technology made our lives easier or just increased our dependency on it.

The way I see it, technology has made it possible to do certain things we wouldn't have been able to do without it. But then what happens is we become dependant on that technology because we take those new tasks for granted. Whenever I discuss this subject with my friends, I ask them to imagine what it would be like if a certain software, gadget or technology were absent from our lives. Then the discussion typically evolves to 'yeah, but we would just re-learn to do without that particular task, or the ease of doing it, or the frequency of being able to do it.

For example, although I have the capability to use email on many other things besides my computer (cell phone, PDA, etc.), I have resisted that advance, because I don't want to put myself in the position of being 'expected' to answer my email every waking minute of every day. I only use email on my computer, and I like it that way. My email contacts don't seem to mind and the expectation of having 18 hour email contact with me is absent.

On the other hand, I blog. Pretty much every day. It's like a monkey on my back. I feel like I should do it every time I get access to the internet. What did I do before blogging tools and internet? More of something else......

So while having access to all sorts of information has made me feel more 'plugged in', now I take all that access for granted. Which begs the question - am I better off with or without the information? Most would argue that more information is better. But is it?

Anyone want to weigh in?

1 comment:

Carla said...

With the dawning of a new job for me, I was "required" to get a blackberry. I didn't really want one, because I was good enough with just basic voice mail. But they wanted me linked 24/7. But the blackberry comes with a groovy option of auto shut off, where I can program the time it goes off and come on...me like.
I love technology, it has made "things" in my life more accessible. We just returned from Hawaii where we had no computer, and wired cafes were expensive and time consuming. Because I love the internets and the google I missed the aspect of being able to look up whatever I wanted or information at the time I needed. I missed that instant answer, but we evolved back to caveman style and searched the yellow pages and other printed word for what we needed. But still......