My husband Don and I were talking one morning this week about the frustrations that technology brings with it along with its wonderful benefits. I had been telling him how my sister Carolyn in England had to use the computer at the library which provided only limited access and time to accomplish things; she had finally got back on line on her home computer only to spend several hours trouble shooting without a resolution, and had to call in a technician to her home to fix the problem. She needs the connection to engage in her continuing education which requires a great deal of on line work. So once again the positive attributes of the technology were overshadowed by its dysfunctional attributes.
When we come to depend on equipment, and/or our work is associated with its use, the frustrations are even greater. We might forget how we accomplished things without it, and often in today’s techno filled world, it isn’t even possible to resort to the old ways of doing things because they just don’t work any more or work speedily enough for our fast paced lives. We have also become accustomed to speed and ease (physically, that is). I think because of this people in general have become as impatient as they have become dependant on the gizmos in our lives.
While attempting to accomplish something important and we are inhibited by the very machinery we need to get it done we are exasperated! Although I find that people who use computers and the internet for entertainment and other things not work associated can become just as infuriated by being let down by it.
It prompted the discussion of the fact that with almost everything man made, no matter how many benefits and advantages it provides, there is almost always some sort of problem to be dealt with: Called the downsides; for example, atomic and other forms of energy. I have called them trade offs, which are an every day a fact of life
I began to wonder if there is anything human beings have invented that does not bring with it as many dangers or difficulties as it does good. So I asked Don if he could think of anything. Being his quick witted and smart minded self he came up with a few right away. Although he was also able to see how, just like most human inventions, they too had their frustrating aspects; however, they had no negative impacts on people and society in general.
So , when you have the time and mind space, and if you think you’d enjoy this little exercise, I suggest you begin making a list of all the things human beings have invented that have not had negative, dangerous or downsides to them; including things that could not be used for ill as well as good. It won’t only be interesting; it could very well help you to recognize that as human beings we have indeed been successful in many ways of helping ourselves and each other with inventions and enabled our progress in positive ways.
You could make this a game in the office or at home. Let me know what you come up with, and I will share with you our own and other people’s lists.
This will be an interesting challenge. I will be looking forward to your thoughts about this.
TTFN and all the best , always, from Elaine Kissel