Today, when I got back from the gym my little sister was on her laptop playing games. She’s nine and she loves those kind of games where you become a persona/character and just play games to earn “money”, build houses, and look after pets, so games like Club Penguin, Neopets, Moshi monsters ect. So pretty much any type of game where you build your virtual reality.
Anyway, sometimes it can be hard to get her off the laptop so, my dad was telling her that if she spends too much time on the laptop eventually the laptop will eat her. According to the theory that my dad was relating to my sister, it’s my dads theory so you know made up, spending to much time on the laptop would firstly, eat her mind, then her soul, her body and she’d be stuck inside the laptop as a captive. Obviously, my sister giggled because my dad is always making up silly stories like this. Then, he was telling my sister that when my dad and his siblings were young they’d sneek and listen to my grandad’s radio and change it to a channel that played music instead of the news channels. Obviously, they’d get caught doing this and my grandad would tell them not to do it again because the radio had little people inside, who lived in there to broadcast the news, and if they spent too much listening to the radio the people inside the radio would use thier magic and turn my dad and his siblings into small people, capture them, and use them as broadcasters too.
I just think both these ideas my dads and my grandads stories show that perhaps as technology has become much more advanced the children that are born in to that technology are much more consumed by it. In both stories the moral of it is that spending too much time with technology makes us slaves to it. My dad only got a smartphone about 3 months ago after having a Nokia 1100 for years and the only reason he got his Samsung S2 was so, that he could be connected to the business email without having to go on a computer. Also, I think the generation before us, so our parents generations are kind of split because some of them know loads about technology whereas others are quite technophobic. But I think this generation are really the children of Technology, we live, breathe, sleep, and are drowned in technology pretty much all the time. Sometimes, it’s painful even to be torn away from technology when your sitting at a family gathering or something. Technology to some perhaps feels like it is encroaching and suffocating their lives as everything becomes more and more technology based. For example when you call up a call centre and you have to press buttons to get to correct type of adviser and then press buttons 1, 2 or 3 to answer a few questions that are “frequently asked” or “common problems” – and if it is one of those they then tell you to go on thier website and there is a step by step on what to do which is even more frustrating – and you just feel like shouting like “just let me speak to a human for goodness sake (even if they’re based in India and lie to to me and tell me their name is Mark when it’s really Raj)!!!”. Even worse is when your younger siblings know little shortcuts and things that you don’t and they become frustrated by you going about the “long way” or when you work in a technology shop (like I did) and the customer comes in who’s a 15 year old boy and asks you for advise on RAM for their gaming computer and then knows more than you.
So, yeah I really think we are in a stage of Humankind where children are being born into technology from a young age and technology is starting to construct our lives just like language does. The scary thing is that as we become more and more dependent on technology will those who don’t use technology become alienated from society? Perhaps this can already be seen in elder people eg. 70 years old and above or in those familie who are less fortunate. Will technology become a powerful tool like language that if we don’t know how to use it we can’t understand or be apart of the world around us? What do you think? What are your thoughts?