April '16

Generation Technology

I am typing this on my iPad, listening to Spotify that is included as part of my phone contract, waiting for my external hardrive to finish a download. There is no denying that my generation is Generation Technology, my sister (who is three) expects our laptop to respond to her touching the screen, because she is so used to doing this with our phones and tablets. I was without my iPad for a week and didn’t quite know what to do. We are reliant and we have grown to become dependant on our portable devices. I am a child of the 90’s, so I would like to think that I still have a good memory of life before a phone had a touchscreen and a floppy disk was the best thing for portable storage. I am not entirely naive to what the world used to be like before Apple became a conglomerate and HP launched laptops in all the colours of the rainbows. img_0028

Through the developments I have seen in my life time, I think that society has become so reliant on its technology that it fails to actually function as a proper society. No more do you see someone sat by a tranquil pond reading a book, now you see them browsing Facebook for the hundredth time that day and blocking out the sounds of nature with some EDM music. This is zapping the creativity right out of us, we are not engaging our brains enough and we are becoming lazy. Even as I type this now I am expecting my spellcheck to correct any typos I produce. I don’t want to sound like a major sceptic, because I love this tech and I love what it has enabled us to be able to do, I just think people have become far too reliant on it. I know, I know, I’m typing this on an iPad, but like I said, it can be helpful. But surely there is a more worthwhile way to spend your time than being on Facebook for more than ten minutes at a time?

I wrote a blog post last month called ‘The Death of the Bookshop?’ where I addressed the issues of being able to buy books online and this post is similar. We can read whatever we want on our devices, I personally use mine reading wise, for my National Georgphic subscription and reading the news sites. These resources are so easy to get hold of now as well, you don’t even need to leave your house to view text online and subscribe to virtual magazines. But there is something special in the smell of a new book, or an old one that has journeyed from house to house. Our tablets and laptops get updated every few years, books last for life if you treat them correctly. I think there will be something to be missed in being able to hand down books to your children that you loved in your childhood. My mum always read me her copies of imageBunchy and Milly Molly Mandy and I have very fond and cosy memories of sitting in bed as my mum read the stories she was revisiting to me.

Too many of us are burying our noses in our phones, even as we walk down the street we are glued to our virtual reality. It is sad that it has become to norm to be constantly texting someone, so much that you miss having conversations with actual people. I have a friend that is obsessed with two of her technology products, she never puts them down and has them with her even when we are socialising together in a group. People think they can concentrate on two things at once but they can’t, technology always seems to win in the battle for attention. I challenge you to take an hour of your day to just leave your phone in another room and have a conversation with someone face to face, read a book, or go for a walk.

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