How does Modern Technology affect our lives?

There is no denying that our lives have been made easier, and more convenient by the use of modern technology. In this day and age it’s completely possible to live your whole life from the comfort of your home. You can order anything you desire using Amazon Prime, get any food you crave from a host of food delivery apps, and it’s completely possible to work entirely from home, and all of this is thanks to the advancement of apps and the internet.

While we can do all of this from the comfort of our beds does this mean our lives are better? Well yes and no… There’s no denying our lives are more convenient, with it often being easier doing things at home than having to venture out of the house into the hustle and bustle of the city.

It’s also aparant that in those countries where higher technology is available, people have a better of quality of life, but it can be hard to decifer whether this is causation or correlation as these countries also have the most GDP per capita (e.g Denmark and USA).

Of course, it’s easier and pleasant to have the ability to order something and have it at your door in a few hours and this defiently can increase your quality of life. However, with social media and online gaming consuming hours of people’s time a day these factors can affect peoples relationships with their families and significant others. This can be due to people paying more attention to social media than their spouses, and lack of any real conversation around the family dinner table. Children and adults alike often prefer to stay inside watching TV and playing video games over going outside, taking up a sport, playing with friends and socialising as a group in person. Only to venture out when their instagram needs freshening up with pictures of food and fields. While obviously this isn’t the case for everyone, it’s hard to deny that seeing children huddled in a group and staring at screens is becoming an all to familiar sight. I’m not against this, as we all know technology is becoming more and more important in our lives and the younger you learn how to use it the easier you life is, but we have to remember the importance of human interaction, and that our lives shouldn’t just revolve around a screen telling us what is important. A balance is needed, if you get anxiety if you’re without your phone for a short period of time, then maybe there could be a problem here?

Having said that, technology has enabled people to have more freedom in their life. Allowing for people to work on the go, and have international careers. No one can deny that technology has helped those who otherwise wouldn’t be able to socialise to have a voice; and for people who aren’t able to leave the house, to be able to be part of something outside of their home life. Modern Technology has also enabled news to travel the world instantly. For people to stay in touch with home, wherever that may be; and for all of us to be able to find groups of like minded people to interact with, that we would have never known of before.

Addiction to modern technology, specifically smart technology is becoming a growing occurrence. Time magazine has found that most of us look at our phones 47 times a day with 18-24 year old checking their phones an average of 74 times a day. From feeling phantom vibrations and having random impulses to check our phones is this technology affecting us more than we realise? Well smart phone rehab sites have been popping up everywhere since with “The Independent” saying children as young as thirteen are attending these clinics as people start to become emotionally dependent on their phones. Harley Street rehab clinic specialist Mandy Saligari has compared giving a kid a smartphone to giving them a gram of cocaine, or a bottle of wine. This coming from one of the world’s leading addiction specialists, maybe there is more reason for us to be concerned than we let on. However in my opinion this sounds a bit like scare tactics and i’m sure the health effects wouldn’t be comparable.

There is always another side to the story though. Modern Technology has improved the lives of those with disabilities both mental and physical. With 1 Billion people worldwide having a disability of some sort modern technology has been heavily invested in helping these people overcome their disabilities and increase their quality of life. Motor Neuron disease is a prime example of this, with an estimated 400,000 people having this worldwide technology has aided them to live a better life where they can communicate and have more independence than they would otherwise. An example of this is Stephen Hawking. It is understood the neurons used for eye movement are particularly resistant to degenerative diseases, and this has allowed for technology to be developed that allows computers to recognise even the slightest eye movements, and create a program that recognises these gestures and produce words. This can aid people to communicate when otherwise they wouldn’t be able too.

Personally, I think Modern Technology adds to our lives and makes them easier, subsequently increasing our quality of lives. While obviously we can all see the benefits and what it brings to our lives and significantly improves the lives of some, it should be equally as important for us to recognise what it might be taking from us as well. So while we all know the benefits, do we all know the risks? After all, if you are only going out of the house to take pictures of your dinner for social media, is this sort of technology really making your life better?

Written by, Steven Anthony Moore.

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