Current technological advancements are incredible. Technology is now all around our daily lives. It gives us the capability of completing tasks that were not possible just a few years ago, only with our limited human brains and bodies. On the contrary, the rate at which technology is developing is scary. In a few more years, we may find ourselves living in a world similar to the world described in science fiction novels: Earth’s atmosphere filled with pollutants and micro computer chips embedded into our brains. Are technological developments really as great as we think they are?
Starting back from 2007 when iPhones first came out (Yes, believe it or not, it still hasn’t been ten years since iPhones came out!), over the course of just a couple of years, the Apple watch, the Google Glass, and more were created and some already introduced into our lives. “Smart contact lenses” are now being made and tested just as we talk! Seeing the rapid development of devices over the past couple of years, it must not be that far off into the future when we find ourselves walking around freehanded, computers already implanted into our brains. Though it may be exciting to imagine how these technological advancements would change our lives, it is hard not to see the similarities between what is happening to us now to the events leading up to tragic endings of certain science fiction stories.
The young adult dystopian novel, Feed, by Matthew Tobin Anderson is a great example of a book that makes readers stop and think about where we may be headed with our non stopping growth in technology. In this book set on future Earth, people are connected to a computer network, feednet, through implanted devices known as feeds. The implantation of a feed allows people to mentally access vast amount of data easily and communicate with others who have a feed telepathically. The story takes a turn when the main character and his friend’s feeds get hacked. Without a functioning feed, no one knows what to do. They had depended on them too much in the past. Feeds being electronics, of course can also break. This not only causes emotional but physical harm as well.
Dependance on electronic devices is already a worldwide problem in our current world. With the invention of the calculator and calculator apps on our phones, many people, both adults and children, do not know how to do simple math in their head. Not only that, but people are addicted to their electronic devices. Majority of people now carry their phone around with them twenty-four seven, experiencing withdrawal symptoms when they do not have their device close with them. Keeping these things in mind, can we really say that the current technological advancements are good for us? If we are already experiencing problems handling current electronic devices, are we going to be able to effectively use electronic devices yet to come?
Imagine being place in the middle of nowhere to complete against wild animals. Without the use of technology, we would not be able to survive. Our species would go extinct. Most of us are already depending on technology too much in order to live our daily lives that without it, we would not be able to do anything. On the other hand, it is true that the knowledge and creativity that allows technological advancements to take place comes from our very own highly developed brains unique to our species. In that case, would we be able to figure out a smart way to survive in the wild? It is hard to decide whether our race is getting smarter or more dumb each year.
The rate at which technology is advancing is so fast that many of us are forgetting to question it. Is technology really bettering our lives? Though there are many positive factors to technology, are the negatives, the possible consequences, also being addressed? 2016 is already right around the corner! As you create resolutions for the upcoming year, stop and think about your technology usage.