We all misunderstand and misinterpret that technology can solve everything or rather it will eventually. While right and wrong, sometimes we lay too much emphasis on technology that faith on our own prowess fails or simply overlooked. Weren’t we able to memorize and remember a truckload of telephone numbers? Weren’t we able to do math mentally? Remember birthdays, anniversaries of near and far. The mailman was our main source of communication exchange. We had our own internal database – that can store number, words, equations, law and rules – and that’s why we call it ‘by-heart’. It was not a super computer, but it was superb processing unit.
With the advent of the sophisticated machines – starting the simplest calculator, to the latest scientific calculator, life of course became sophisticated – but at what cost. Today, kids seem to struggle to divide 1 divided by 2 and by instinct they reach out for the calculator. ‘That’s the way we are taught’.
Software coding used to be in notepad as the ‘tool’. Its more advanced in the present age. These modern gadgets, tools and techniques are welcomed and embraced. Inexplicably, the solid grounding one had with the ike of notepad is missing in the IDE (integrated development environment). We are indeed the torchbearers for technology. Codes are now reused, instead of writing from the scratch – after all it’s the same ‘Login’ module. So why reinvent the wheel. The public domain is full of that one has to trowel and one has tinker. If you give it back or make it open – call that open source. Certainly, computers have reshaped. Consequently, sophistication has slackened our skills instead of sharpening; allay instead of rending us active, dependent instead of dominating [we don’t even bother to get the spelling correct – why? The system will take care. The flip side is auto-correct can actually end up misleading. Such instance are one too many when correspondence of suffered when we leave it to the control or total mercy of the computer]. This is not just with business correspondence but in all our walk of life. No machine is immune to malfunction. But how does one detect the malaise before the damage is done. Advanced minds. This means less reliance and dependence. Self-sufficient. Get back to the basic. Use technology to supplement and complement, and not as the substance. Today robots are capable of creating blogs and write-ups – and did they get it right? Today robots can replace waiters in a restaurant – were they able to take the order or serve appropriately.
Human endeavour is to make progress and be at it. The trade-off should not be our intelligence erodes or corroded. Not at the cost of dependence for anything and everything. They are supposed to improve our lives, help us overcome difficulties, but not own our sense and sensibilities. We are much more competent and capable but the bane of machines curbing the complexities had made inadvertently reliant that instead of masters, we are slave to the system. we are less communicative with each other, less inactive, less agile and less usage of our faculties , so when fail to exercise our body and mind its makes is overall unhealthy. are we getting back to the old times? life has gone on a full circle??
A customer recounted a very hilarious encounter. This happened in India, where the three-wheeler called as ‘autorickshaw’ driven around manually without GPS or any such gadget but rely on the acumen of the driver. The customer with no idea about the geography and supremely confident of his ’GPS’ boarded for lack of a better transportation at that time, and instructed the driver the ‘destination with address’ but insisted in guiding as he had his ‘GPSs’. The thoroughly amused driver with a smirk on his face and a cynical ‘yes sir, as you wish’ complied with the “10 meters take left and 20 meters take right” and it just guided. The busy customer glued to the gps was horrified and jumped out of shock “we have come to the same lace we started.”
The driver threw a “you got it all wrong. You could trust my experience but went for some device that made us dumb”. Customer conceded “ok champ, you win. Now can you take me to my place?” with the vehicle swerving right, left, and sometime straight, they reached in 10 minutes. The driver didn’t sermonize but offered some unsolicited advice “sometimes we work better than that ‘device director’. His christening of GPS was really humorous and so was the narration. The customer concluded “I paid that guy twice the fare: one of the ride and the other for tuition.” Incredible lessons learnt.
Technology should lead us. We should not be led by it.
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