Every day technology seems to help make lives easier and easier. The advent of cell phones has virtually eliminated the need to hunt around for public phones. Email and texting has largely replaced the labor-intensive act of writing and mailing physical letters. Has all this convenience and ease made us better as people, or have we become slaves to the path of least resistance?
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Just a generation ago the average person was accustomed to waiting for things: Lines to wait to see tax preparers, lines to wait to purchase tickets, lines to handle most aspects of personal business. While waiting in these lines was never fun, they built into people a sense of patience and an understanding that sometimes "good things come to those who wait".
With the speed and user-friendly nature of almost any type of business, desires can be satisfied almost immediately. Someone who wants to buy a new pair of socks used to have to get in a car, drive to a physical store, and be satisfied with whatever offerings the store may have. Now a shopper can search for hundreds of thousands of different types of socks in an instant via online shopping. There is no need to leave home, no settling for what a particular store has in stock, and no need to deal with or interact with another person.
Speed and Accuracy
There are pros and cons to all the speed that technology affords people. Sure, attention span has dropped as waiting for certain things has gone the way of the dinosaur, but the current generation has also learned to do things faster than previously imaginable. Take simple conversation. The ability to send and receive hundreds of texts per hour allows for a kind of "speed conversation" that is even faster than speaking. Schoolwork can be completed with more elaborate information that is gathered faster and with greater precision than the old method of combing encyclopedias.
With the rise of technology, there has come a rise in the number of jobs available and even education available. Working to get an online master’s degree in computer science is almost guaranteeing a job these days. Our reliance on machines is here to stay, and with that comes new jobs and new opportunities for the younger generations.
Depending on one’s point of view, technology has either made people super adaptable speed merchants that are more productive and capable of multi-tasking like never before, or the current generation has produced a bunch of impatient slackers who always expect everything to happen immediately. Regardless of opinion, technology is not going anywhere. It continues to saturate the daily lives of more and more people.
By Brooke Chaplan