Thursday, October 20, 2005

Mobile Phones and Technology

It seems that once a new technology has become culturally incorporated into our everyday working and social lives, it can be almost impossible to turn back the clock.

A pertinent example of course is mobile phones, which have gone from being brick sized novelties for the rich in the 1980’s, to being an essential social tool of not only the majority of young adults but now of primary school kids too.I think it is bad enough that adults are slaves to a particular technology, that is, slaves by choice, without such devices being unleashed upon small children as young as five.

Everyday I face the internal struggle, where a part of me is acquiescing and tolerant of this technology as communication tool, and a distinct part of me that wants to smash it into little pieces. On the one hand mobiles are indeed very useful and provide convenient communication on the go, 24 hours a day, where-ever you may be, and on the other hand I feel this deep resistance, as if something quite unnatural has taken such an important place in my life.

Indeed I find the whole Idea of “cyber” humans to be more of a threat to our humanity, then some futuristic novelty. Sure there has always been fear of technology, and indeed some of it irrational, but surely the line has to be drawn somewhere, doesn’t it?
Now I am not arguing that we are all on the brink of a futuristic nightmare world, where useful functions are eventually replaced by technology, to the point where our existence becomes irrelevant, however such a future is certainly possible. The road ahead is of course, ours to pave.

We should be mindful however, as we enter this new digital techno-spectacle era, of whether certain technology is indeed serving our long-term interests, or whether the interests of humanity has been replaced by the interests of machines and technological development, in what has become a self perpetuating cycle with a life of its own, and where our interests and identities are subsumed into the greater digital-technological whole.


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