Technological progress has many benefits and has brought a lot of conveniences which allow to simplify our everyday activities and to give new possibilities for business and entertainment. However, the technologies also have their negative effect, since they inevitably change the rhythm and style of our existence, and make our lives quite frenetic. The aim of this essay is to discuss this statement and the effect of technology on the development of the society.
Rapid development of technologies has changed the whole way of living of the society worldwide. Everything has changed: the way of receiving news, communicating with friends and relatives, searching information, even the methods of working and the requirements to representatives of different professions have been shaped by the technological and communications boom. Estimates show that the volume of Internet traffic worldwide is doubling every 100 days. In fact, the loads of information which modern people have to process many times exceed the information that our parents had to know and analyze.
Another impact of the technology is that the world has become a smaller place to live in. Nowadays it is possible to reach from one end of the globe to the other one in several hours, not speaking about traveling inside one country.
Besides, it is possible to communicate with people without seeing them in reality ”“ the means of online communication, videoconferencing, and instant messaging give plenty of such possibilities. On one hand, such tendencies have positive impact because people need not spend their valuable time on traveling, transmitting information and other intermediate activities.
On the other hand, automation of routine activities and increase of communication lines have significantly intensified our lives. The necessity to check several communication channels (e-mail, phone, chats, conferences, blogs etc.) itself also requires a lot of time. The amount of real-time communication has decreased much; people prefer to stay on-line and on the mobile phone, but in fact there is a tendency to social alienation. Most individuals have more contacts, but less real contacts, less friends, and less time for activities outside the informational sphere.
One more negative consequence of availability of online communication is that people value those who are communicating with less. There is an illusion that finding other associates is easy. As a result, there is the lack of flexibility and the growing trend to egotism in the society. A vivid illustration of this tendency is the expansion of dating sites where people can be looking for the partner for years.
The pace of life has also increased due to technological advances. Since routine work is done by the software or automation complexes, people have to do more analytical and research work, possess broad knowledge on modern technologies and quickly adjust to changes. Competition and labor intensification have increased, also due to technological progress. Currently this is normal in many countries and local communities to work more than 8 hours per day, have one day off or no days off, combine several works. The world is slowly becoming more and more frenetic place to live in.
The overuse of technologies and over-reliance on technology instead of living and communicating in real life can be a threat to existing social order as well as to the mental and physical health of people in future. It might be useful to redirect the technical progress to more urgent spheres of human life such as medicine, education etc. In general, the technologies have to be used appropriately, without fanaticism. The technologies need to be designed for people, not vise versa.