SIDE EFFECTS OF RELIANCE ON TECHNOLOGYAldous Huxley once said, Technological progress has merely provided us with more efficient means for going backwards. Though satirical the quote can be taken more seriously in the sense that in 2019, are we closer than ever to his vision of a technological ravaged world?It is widely argued that technology has more positive effects in the world than negative effects. Most people believe that technology has helped improve our society and has made it a lot easier and more productive while others think that technology might bring about the destruction of the world.
Nowadays, it is nearly impossible to do things without the help of technology. We rely on technology as it is now part of our daily life and affects every area of it. In other words, every aspect of our lives is affected by technology. The belief that technology has made more of a positive impact than a negative one is not entirely true.
Human beings have become so dependent on technology that it is impractical to live without it. Technology is now used in health, agriculture, transport and various other sectors in the world. The introduction of technology in the transport sector has led to the manufacture of vehicles which use fuel. The chemical reaction in the engine causes the release of carbon dioxide into the atmosphere. The release of carbon dioxide causes a depletion in the ozone layer which protects us from the harsh ultraviolet rays from the sun. Similarly, the release of carbon dioxide has resulted in many health diseases as carbon dioxide affects the composition of blood. Diseases such as hypercapnia, lung cancer, and respiratory tract infections are as a result of excess carbon in the air. This form of pollution makes the air unsafe and impure. Fossil fuels and greenhouse gases are equally being produced every day from the largest industries and these have contributed greatly to global warming. Since the effects of global warming are now becoming more evident, one can infer that technology could lead to major consequences for individual health and society as well. Technology is the basis for the manufacture of weapons of vast destruction. Weapons such as nuclear bombs, flame throwers, poison gas have resulted in an increase in wars and violence in every part of the world. Because of this, millions of innocent lives have been lost. Technology has led to an increase in cyber crimes such as hacking, identity theft, cyberstalking and so on. These crimes are the aftermath of technological advancements. Likewise, the concept that allows artificial intelligence, that is, machine learning to improve its intelligence and performance based on experience poses a great danger to the human race. Though the idea sounds clich©, the possible effect is worth giving serious consideration. In addition, the presence of technology everywhere has increased the rate of unemployment. Technology has made it difficult for people to be recruited for jobs. Humans are being replaced by artificial intelligence. Nowadays a machine can handle the job of ten persons for example in a supermarket, the customers can self-checkout with the help of automated machines thus replacing the workers at the supermarket checkout since it does the same work more accurately and faster. This has led to a high rate of unemployment thereby causing an increment in criminal activities. Technology has reduced the rate of social interaction in society. People spend most of their time engrossed in their phones making it difficult to interact with others. This may lead to depression as well as other mental health problems as it is required by the human brain to socialize to keep it healthy. According to Professor Matthew Lieberman in his book Social: Why Our Brains Are Wired To Connect, the human brain is dependent on the social world. The amount of time spent by people on social media like Facebook, Twitter, Instagram is alarming. It causes distractions mostly to students and prevents them from focusing on their studies. Research also shows that children that spend more time on social media are more likely to commit suicide. The technical experts like Bill Gates, Steve Jobs and some others who founded or co-founded social media limit the amount of time their children spend using technology as they are aware of the damage it can do. A recent survey in 2018 shows that 60% of parents are optimistic about the role of technology on their child’s life as they grow while the remaining 40% felt otherwise. This substantial percentage of people shows that technology has a frightening amount of negative impact on a child’s life.Technology slows the academic development of students as they are made to rely on tools like the calculator to solve simple math problems and applications like Grammarly to check spelling errors hence cannot rely on their own mental capabilities and correct their mistakes more proficiently. This is seen in their lifestyle as they are not able to solve basic daily challenges without consulting their phones. At the same time, students have terrible sleeping habits due to staring at their phones and this suppresses the production of the hormone that regulates the normal sleep cycle. Technology has caused health problems of migraine, sight and hearing impairment and obesity due to people staring at their screen all day and night, not doing anything else thus hinders them the efficacy of contributing to societal growth. Furthermore, the introduction of video games has led to a rapid increase in aggression in most teenagers and adults. Most people have lost their sense of empathy because of the morally violating things they watch or play on their phones. It is no news that the internet is the main detrimental factor causing a dent on our future and perhaps the future of the next generation. The problem of low self-esteem is now more evident as many individuals tend to compare themselves with people at a better stage in life. This act of self-depreciation has caused an increase in the rate of suicide thus limiting the number of capable youths we have for the development of our society.Technology is vividly involved in societal growth, but have we stopped to think about what might happen if the technology we rely on stopped working? What would happen to every one of us whose lives are intertwined with technology? would those chains of overdependence be broken, or are we to be pulled down along with it? Our society has been developed in such a way that a failure in technology would lead to multiple challenges. The California blackout of 2000 and 2001 was a major crisis which made many people inconvenient and the government had to spend a lot of money to solve the shortage of electricity. Majority of people would die as hospitals use technology in treating the sick and those in very cold environments will have no source of heat making them vulnerable to extreme weather conditions. Movement and communication would be a lot harder and it is likely to affect a lot of people mentally, physically and psychologically.In conclusion, it is apparent that technology has made improvements to various sectors of the world however the negative impact can be disastrous to humanity. This disquieting upshot of technology on our own society can only be solved if we all take actions on the dangerous use of technology and its damaging effects on our children and society. The above quote by Aldous Huxley could mean that the advancement of technology simply makes us more dependent and the over-dependence of humans on technology could create a desolate future for our society. Some might argue that this desolation has already occurred, but we are too distracted by our smartphones to notice.Word count: 1288Bibliography: