Those of us born before 1990 remember a simpler time. We remember when phones where landlines and sometimes families shared party lines and if the month ran out before the money that was the first thing to go.
We had three channels and only the very fortunate could afford cable which was a grand total of 12 channels. Video games were new and most homes only had one TV, maybe two if you were very lucky.
We read paper books.
We didn’t have personal computers and when we did, they were huge and the internet was the biggest pain in the butt you could imagine waiting for it to dial-up and pray the phone didn’t ring.
We also had chat rooms, not social media. The news broadcasted three times a day and they had 30 mins to fit in what was important and that’s how we lived and we seemed to be a lot more productive and seemed to have a lot better sense of time than we do now.
Looking back I don’t think I would have believed someone from the future if they came and told me that one day we would have phones we carried in our pockets, and have mini cameras or that we could get on a box in our homes and talk to someone around the world instantly.
Having thousands of channels at our fingertips or being able to play games with strangers online. None of this would have rung true to me back then, yet here we are.
Have we improved our lives with all this access to technology?
Have we bettered ourselves?
Do we use it for the best or do we use it to weaken us?
Do we really need to know what is going on around the world 24/7 or fill the newsfeed with constant drama?
Do we really stay in touch with our loved ones or do we just have the illusion of staying in touch?
Are we really more productive, more knowledgeable, and more informed?
Yes, technology has definitely made our lives easier. In some ways we are more organized, we can get things done faster and have access to information at our fingertips. We can speak to someone across the world instantly without any delay, and it’s easier to shot a message over to a loved one than write a card or letter.
Has this made us better?
Are we more productive?
Do we utilize these resources to their full potential?
Have we become lazier?
Less social, less interactive?
Are we actually less informed and less educated?
Are we building relationships or simply making superficial bonds?
Are we more distracted in our daily life?
As I look around, I ask myself these things every day. I am as guilty as anyone at using electronics to distract myself and not utilize my full potential. We have all these tools and resources yet people don’t use them to fight for what they believe in; they use them to complain and do nothing substantial about it.
Relationships are not as substantial as they used to be and we feel the need to be in constant contact with each other versus a time when you were relieved if you got a call once in a while.
Compared to the generations before us, the generations that created all the amazing things we have become so dependent on, I feel we have devolved in many ways. We believe anything we read on the internet if it supports whatever our ideals are.
We don’t get out and vote or get involved in our communities. We find things to distract us instead of being productive in our daily lives. Many of the bonds we make are superficial and untrusting. We move through life at the speed of light and want everything now.
Worst of all we are so highly dependent on these convinces would we really survive if we lost them?
I fear what the future brings, what will the next generations endure. Will they become so lost in a digital world that they fail to exist? Should everything crash will they know how to make it without the things they are so dependent on? Will the very things that we have used to evolve as a species be the very thing that brings us down?