The world is globalized and we are living in an era of advanced technology. Whether you like it or not, every part of our daily life is related to technology in one-way or another. When compared with olden days, we look around and say that there is no doubt that we have better facilities and even better luxuries with the help of increased technology. The development of technology is not confined to any one sector and all the industries and different sectors of society are developing new technologies according to their needs and requirements all the time. The question however is as follows – Is the increase in technology having a positive or negative effect on our lives? The answer – a bit of both – here’s why:
Pros of technological progress
- Thanks to technological progress humans live longer and much more comfortable lives. The medical advancements have helped us develop vaccines and treatment for diseases which were previously lethal. Giving birth is not as dangerous as it used to be. Technological progress has allowed us to develop new techniques for diagnosis and mitigation of diseases and other conditions. Scientific research has improved our understanding of nutrition and contributed to healthier lifestyles.
- Technology has allowed humans to travel faster and trade goods all over the world. Crossing the Atlantic was historically an adventure that would take weeks. Now in just a few hours you can travel from New York to London or Paris. Thanks to technology we can have holidays in remote locations and capture these moments through pictures. We can now buy and consume goods produced far away. In the same supermarket you can find French cheeses, South African wines, Chilean Wines Spanish olive oils and Brazilian coffees.
- Without technology we would still be nomads hunting and gathering fruits and vegetables. Industrial societies rely heavily on technological progress, but the reality is that they are fast becoming technological societies. We can feed a fast growing world population thanks to the continuous innovation in production techniques. New inventions help foster the production, storage, treatment and transportation of goods. Societies which invest in research and development, have a competitive edge and thrive. The people in technologically advanced societies live more comfortable lives.
- The Internet, computers and mobile phones illustrate the role of technology in improving society. Efficiency has skyrocketed thanks to these inventions. Our work and social lives have been transformed. People can now work from home and collaborate with teams located in other towns, countries, or even continents. We can keep a fluid communication and relationship with friends and family living abroad. News of events, cross the globe in seconds. Social networks like Facebook and Twitter are extremely useful. Thanks to technology, grandparents get to see and chat with their grandchildren much more often. People today get to meet others sharing similar hobbies or interests.
- Thanks to new technologies, alternative forms of entertainment and art have developed during the last century. Photography, radio, movies, television shows, music and video games occupy a central spot in people’s lives. There are new forms of entertainment at our doorstep, such as virtual reality. Additionally, IT is facilitating the work of creators and to help increase the quality of entertainment.
- The importance of technology in the development of renewable energies is evident. Without technological progress it would be difficult to envisage a green future in which the problem of climate change could be kept under control. Scientific advancements are making electric cars more affordable and enhancing the effectiveness and efficiency of solar and eolic energy, as well as that of hydropower.
Cons of technology
- Technology is altering our lifestyle and will alter the cognitive and social development of current and future generations. There are many different ways in which the evolution of technology and society are connected. Technological innovation has changed our lives. Computers, smartphones and the internet have strongly affected how we interact with other people. Many claim that they are dehumanizing our lives and making us more solitary people. Technology may also be facilitating cultural colonialism and reducing diversity. Today, children play less with other children and spend much of their time watching videos on their tablets and playing video games. People are doing less physical exercise than their ancestors. We are becoming increasingly detached from nature and more attached to technological gadgets.
- Human cloning technology is a reality and in addition to some obvious advantages, human cloning brings some risks. For instance it could create worrisome divides in society between those genetically divided to be smarter or physically more attractive and the rest. Human cloning will be difficult to regulate and will bring concerns regarding its interference with nature and religious beliefs.
- Technological progress is to be blamed for the negative effects of global warming and climate change. The role of technology fostering economic progress is difficult to deny. However, at the same time the generation of energy necessary to the increased production and transportation of goods, for instance through combustion engines and thermoelectric generators, has produced an increase in the emission and concentration of greenhouse gases in the atmosphere.
- Technology can be used as an undesirable tool of control. For instance, scientists are working to develop brain-scanning machines, which could allow us to read a person’s thoughts. This would have great benefits as it could allow people with disabilities or people having suffered brain injury to communicate, but what if this technique is used for negative purposes?
Deciding on whether Technology is good or bad is virtually impossible to do. We, as the users are the deciders and we have to choose how to use technology and its positive attributes to better our lives, without letting it take over our lives and take on its negative effects. Try to use technology for positive things only; it will have a positive effect on your life.