Over the last centuries, society witnessed technological advancements gradually making everyday lives easier, more convenient, and – well, more interesting. In the 21st century, however, technology made a true quantum leap, with augmented reality, blockchain, artificial intelligence, and 3D printing being just a few examples of the most recent inventions.
Though we are getting used to advancements of any kind, is the development of technology really good for society?
Some Areas in Which Technology Has Changed Our Lives
Advancements in technology have already tapped into every area of life, with its impact particularly notable in these segments:
- Lifestyle. From working remotely to ordering food delivery or booking a hotel room online, most people now rely on the Internet as an irreplaceable part of their lives. Advancements in technology have completely re-shaped the everyday routine of a Modern Human.
- Health. Telehealth, EHR, 3D medical imaging, smart wearable devices that track heart rate and blood oxygen level are just a few examples of technological advancements introduced in health care over the last few decades.
- Privacy. In the digital world, privacy is more important than ever. While the rates of cybercrimes increase, which by the way is also a recent tech innovation, such advancements as cryptography and antivirus software strike a blow, saving users’ privacy online.
- The attitude of the youth. A huge part of the modern generation literally can not imagine their lives without technology: they use smart devices at home and school, google anything they want to know, wear smartwatches, have video calls, and own robots and self-driving cars.
- Business. Such innovations as cloud computing, Big Data, Data Science, AI/ML completely reshaped the modern business landscape. The Covid-19 pandemic accelerated digital transformations, prompting most businesses to switch to remote mode.
- Human behavior. With the mass adoption of mobile smart devices, people virtualized most of their day-to-day tasks. There is a dedicated mobile app for everything: booking a ride, tracking eating and sleeping habits, or even checking how one would look when he/she gets old.
How Has Technology Affected People?
It is indisputable that thanks to technology, we get a chance to live a life our predecessors could not even dream about. But do all tech advancements bring sole good to our lives? Or, maybe, the impact of tech innovations is quite ambiguous.
Positive Impact Of Technology
When all areas of human activity get rapidly digitized, it’s easy to become desensitized to the importance of innovations and advancements for the overall progress of society. But technology helps us immensely, for instance:
- Now that the agricultural processes are mechanized and automated, farmers may grow and harvest more crops.
- With advancements in transportation, people can travel long distances with speed and comfort – by air, land, or water.
- Communication, enriched with online channels, video calling, and 5G technologies, has reached new heights, connecting people from all corners of the globe.
- Radio, television, electronic media are indispensable means of news and information for people in any country worldwide.
- Education has recently become more accessible to all people, irrespective of their geographical location, thanks to modern technological advancements, such as online classrooms, electronic curricula, digital learning management systems among others.
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How to Get the Most out of Technologyo remain empowered, not distressed, by the modern technological advancements, everyone should use them where and when needed.
For instance, you can make use of productivity and time-tracking apps available for smartphones or PCs when feeling a lack of concentration or self-discipline. Similarly, if you are concerned with your health and lifestyle, you can choose from a wide range of wearable devices and fitness apps.
Most of the digital tools can be downloaded free of charge, which makes it even easier to use them.
Negative Impact Of Technology
On the downside, some technological developments prove to be a curse rather than a blessing. Here are a few examples:
- Excessive use of gadgets, lack of offline communication, and social media abuse were proven to cause negative effects on mental health.
- In online communication, people are often hog-tied to express non-verbal cues, which results in misunderstandings and offenses.
- Relationships of those people who spend more time communicating online, compared to offline, may become tense and more fragile over time.
- Younger people, more prone to digital world addictions, sometimes lose the skills and desire to communicate with their peers face-to-face, in the real world.
- Video-gaming addicts often do not leave their homes for weeks and lead sedentary lifestyles, which eventually ruin their health.
- Teenagers spend too much time scrolling through Instagram and TikTok feeds bringing severe mental health problems to them as they tend to compare themselves to the dummy perfect images of others they see online.
How to Reduce Negative Effects of Technology Excessive use of technology can do more harm than good, and we should bear this in mind before we rush into digitizing our lives.
It is important to monitor the use of tech in every aspect of daily routine and, while it is not too late, limit the time spent in front of the smartphone screen.
Also, it’s a good idea to use all-in-one apps to manage a complex of tasks (e.g., having all your email accounts and messengers integrated in one place) rather than switching between a dozen of smaller apps for each activity.
As an alternative to playing a video game or scrolling through social media, find a paper book that would interest you and spend time outdoors regularly. Instead of watching another Netflix episode in front of a TV set, talk to your family or take up gardening.
Spending more time outdoors, without electronic devices, promotes life-work balance and is generally good for a healthy lifestyle.
Technological Advancements Of The Modern Day
Though it may be tough to predict which advancements technology would bring next, some innovations are already changing our beliefs about the world around us.
For instance, augmented reality (AR) and virtual reality (VR). Something that people would have considered magic just a few decades ago is now gaining popularity in business, gaming, and team building.
Wearable screens and gesture-based computing, other recent innovations, are predicted to soon substitute the usual PC and phone screens.
Robots, another buzzword in today’s business world, have already replaced humans in some workplaces — robotic arms work at assembly or packing lines. Flying cars will soon address the issue of limited ground space and long traffic jams.
Well, people of Earth are even projected to use technological innovations to colonize other planets in the foreseeable future. The sky is no longer the limit!
Technology improves all aspects of human lives, making them easier and diverse. Though technological advancements are generally seen as a positive change, some people perceive them in a negative light.
Overindulgence in the use of digital apps and smart devices, overreliance on online tools may sometimes lead to tragic effects. Yet, if technological developments are used wisely, they bring nothing but good to society.
Clearly, technology by itself is neither good nor bad. It is only the way and extent to which we use it that matters.