Is technology taking over our lives?

Always connected

So I am a self-professed gadget freak. I obsess about my laptop not being fast enough, and it annoys me that each time I get a new iPod, apple release a new version weeks later. I can seldom go without being connected to my network and the days that my Time Warner internet connection is down for even 30 mins leaves me panicking.

But I increasingly find it intriguing how groups of people out and about in the most exciting city in the world, are glued to their devices rather than noticing the Manhattan skyline. I noticed this family in Union Square the other day, and they were all staring at their iPhones/Blackberry and did not even seem to notice the gorgeous day and the farmers market set-up in the square.

Which got me thinking, if technology was developed to make our lives easier and simpler, what went wrong?

I read an article a while back which talked about how technology addiction was taking its tool in Asia.  According to the National Consumer Affairs Center of Japan, the number of cases brought to it for consultation on online games-related concerns rose to 1,692 in 2010, up from 1,437 in 2009, many of them involving youths. Apparently technology addiction is a real illness, and the effect its takes on your life is as real as someone coming of cigarettes or even drugs. A University of Maryland research described students’ thoughts in vivid detail, in which they admit to cravings, anxiety attacks and depression when forced to abstain from using media. Wow that really is serious stuff.

I don’t have answers to all these facts, but it just makes me think that maybe every now and then we need to take a step back and just enjoy the people and the world we live in. So lets all think over this and keep a watch on how the people around us behave and act, you might be surprised over what you may learn.

5 thoughts on “Is technology taking over our lives?

  1. I was thinking just this yesterday. I found everybody I came across using their iPhones or iPads. They don’t seem to observe things around them and always have their ears plugged with ear phones. I do read during long commutes, but I wonder if people take time out anymore to enjoy plain simple views.

    A side effect of this: a majority of Singapore’s youth is turning (or is likely to very soon turn) deaf.

    • Hello Raaga – yes I do find on my commute that people are literally wired to their devices. I was watching Before sunset yesterday and it had this great dialogue – “if technology was meant to make us more productive and help us get more free time, then what are we really doing with this time?” – Actually not that much.

  2. Agreed, happens a lot with me even. My gaming obsession has cost me a lotta outdoor voyaging. There’s a part of me that feels I should haul my behind away from my PC more often but that hasn’t been the case so far. Mom embargoed all computer related purchases. As far as anxiety attacks and depression is concerned, never had such problems while being abstemious with gadgets. But yea folks should learn to limit getting gadget-y too often, thing is if ones surrounded by nerds who share the same ideology it wont help much, not often will a friend tell you to stop sitting with the laptop and start studying. The responsible/sensible lot are few as far as i can say[ahem ahem]. Would’ve said parents could help but like you said how the entire family was smartphone drunk in broad daylight.. that day ain’t gonna see the sun either.. But those who can should guide their children/brother/sisters whoever at an early age, while it might not completely help but at least part of your will power will be tainted enough to kick in later[hopefully]. Sole reliance on self realization’s gonna make things late and I don’t think going off to college is gonna help much with regards to that. Too much of anything can be bad, the same applies here, technology was designed to make our simpler and easier.. but the degree to which its gonna happen is at our discretion.. Nothing in life can be too easy, if that happens you’ll always find repercussion lurking around the corner..

    Just my 2 cents..

    • Hello Saurav. Thanks for the comment. So i suppose you should be very glad that your mum noticed your gaming obsession. Yes too much of anything can be bad. I suppose it will only get worse for the coming generations because technology is now so closely integrated into the fabric of our lives. I am sort of glad I grew up in a time (not giving away any dates here), when playing outside was still considered cool.

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