How Technology Impacted My Life

Technology has been a part of my life for as long as I can remember. As a child, I would play computer games on our family computer in the living room countless hours. I remember playing video games with my friends and siblings, entertained by our enormous collection of games. As I got older, more and more toys started to become technology based. I went from playing barbies to playing virtual reality games on hand held devices and being glued to my computer screen. When I was about ten years old, a popular electronic for kids my age was a DS. All of my friends had one, and I was absolutely thrilled when I received mine on Christmas morning. My friends and I would constantly trade DS games, fascinated by all of the different options. Although the technology was nothing like it is for children today, it was still a big part of my childhood. My family always reminds me how we used to have family game nights and play together on the Wii. We would play game after game together, never getting tired of it. When my friends would come over, we would always run to the TV and turn on the gaming station. Growing up with technology had a positive impact on me because I had experience for when I needed to use technology in school. For example, when were were old enough to use computers in class, I had already been exposed to one and knew how to operate it. I even became the family member in my household that my parents would turn to if they couldn’t figure out something on their phones or computers. This made me realize the positive impact that growing up with technology had on me because I was able to use my skills to not only benefit myself but others as well. However, there are some times where I wish I wasn’t so reliant on technology. When I was a junior in high school, I started having issues with my laptop. It was old and began to break down. When it broke, I felt like there was so much I couldn’t do. Almost all of my homework assignments involved a laptop, and without one, I could not do my work. I felt helpless, and it made me realized how unfair school is to kids without technology skills or access to computers. It puts them at a disadvantage compared to the other students. Technology is expensive, and not everybody can afford to have devices such as smart phones or laptops. Although technology is already heavily relied on in schools, I believe that this dependency will only continue to grow. In high school and college, computer access is necessary to students for things such as assignments and class websites. In elementary school, we started to learn basic computer skills in the first grade. However, this was mainly just for fun, and our assignments were always handwritten. I predict that in the future, kids as young as the age of seven will be required to do assignments and tests on computers. In fact, I have a little sister who is currently in fifth grade, and last year, her class had a website. On this website, items such as the class agenda and homework assignments were posted. Families with computers and internet access had advantage because they could see what their child was doing in school. I predict children will become more dependent on technology and learn more complex technology skills at a younger age. Even today, I am noticing very young children who know how to use devices such as cell phones and iPads. I received a cell phone when I was about eleven, but didn’t really know how to properly operate it until I was about thirteen. Now, children as young as three years old know how to play games and take pictures on smartphones. Even though I would like to be less dependent on technology, I know that our society is going to grow more and more dependent on these devices, and it would be difficult if I were to isolate myself from these new advancements.

The Evolution of Technology

Technology has been a growing industry for many years. At it’s rise, the purpose of technology was to help increase the efficiency of life and to make everyday tasks more simple. For example, in the mid 1940’s, technology that allowed mathematic calculations to occur was very popular. This includes the earliest form of the calculator, a topic that the article focused on quite a bit. Since math skills were a necessity, especially in certain work environments, a calculator would help generate mathematical equations with ease more quickly. In the article, “As We May Think”, by Vannevar Bush, the current progress and future goals for technology were documented. As of that time period, the 1940’s, the popular technology included devices such as cameras, calculators, printers, and televisions. Although they were not anywhere near the level of advancement that we are today, technology was developed enough to offer several benefits to the public. For example, as stated in the article, “There are signs of a change as new and powerful instrumentalities come into use.” This quote proves that technology is changing the way the world is working. This can relate to the world we live in today. One of the most common things talked about in society, especially by people of older age, is how different the world is due to technology. However, this change isn’t exactly positive. When technology was first growing, the effects that it had on society were mostly positive because it allowed for many important tasks to be done that could have never been done before. This includes taking pictures, driving cars, flying airplanes, solving difficult mathematical equations, and performing complicated surgeries. Although technology today is still growing, many of the new inventions are for recreational purposes. When I think of technology in todays society, the most popular things that come to mind are cell phones, computers, video games, and social media. After all, these are what I use most in my everyday life. In the article, “How Much Time Do We Spend On Social Media,” it breaks down the amount of time an average person spends on social media, and I was shocked by these results. On average, we spend more time on social media than we do eating and drinking, which is a basic need for survival. Humans are making social media and technology more of a priority than their own survival needs. The amount of people using these social  media sites, such as facebook and instagram, is only increasing everyday. That means that in the future, we will be spending more and more time on the internet, especially if more social sites develop. Technology is an important part in society today, but the heavy reliance on it may be detrimental to our social relationships with one another. So, I guess the choice is ours; do we keep up with the latest technologies or take a step back from them? 

The Importance of Domains

Student owned domains are a new classroom technique that have many positive effects on student engagement in class. Both articles, “The Web We Need To Give To Students” and ,”Do I Own My Domain If You Grade It” both emphasize how blogs are personal to the students, which encourages them to be more devoted to their websites.  Its not just a school issued website that goes away when the student graduates, but it is able to stay with them throughout their entire academic career, and, throughout their lives as well. This means that as the student develops and grows, so does their blog. Their blog will track the progress of the students writing abilities, showing how they have developed better writing skills over time. It will also be able to document if the students went through any major changes that may have altered their viewpoints on life. For example, if over the course of having a blog their political views changed, it could have been documented throughout the blog posts, allowing the student to track their character change.  Student domains also encourage students to become more familiar with technology and integrate it into their academic lives. Teenagers often use technology for more social media purposes, a place where they can just have fun and say what they want to say. However, many students lack a way to use self expression on the internet in their academic lives. Having a blog combines the idea of expressing oneself to people all over the world on the internet with engaging in intellectual conversation. With blogs, students can create a formal yet socially inviting environment that allows them to discuss broad topics with people all over the world. Students are able to express their creativity, which is something teachers are beginning to realize is very important. In the article, “Do I Own My Domain If You Grade It”, the author points out why blogs motivate students. A main point was that the changing audience of the blog allows for students to reach a network of individuals, not just one teacher. This encourages students to not just write to one person, but to write to a more diverse audience.

 

First Week of FYS

This week, I began my first year seminar, “Who Controls Your Digital World”.  During this course, I hope to achieve my goal of learning more about technology. To be more specific, I  hope to learn when technology started to become involved in everyday life, why there are different forms of technology, and what programs and people are really behind the devices that we rely on every day. I hope this course teaches me more about who/what social media sights are run by, mainly because social media is apart of my everyday life. I would also expect to learn how technology and social media platforms might grow within the next ten years. To me, having my own web presence through Berg Build means that I am able to freely express my thoughts and opinions about this course and the articles in which we read. Through this blog, I am able to have a voice that will connect me to my classmates and allow myself to hear the opinions from others as well. Hearing my fellow classmates thoughts and opinions will help me learn by seeing things from other perspectives that differ from my own.

Although I use technology in my everyday life, I don’t always enjoy it. Even though it can be handy to find  information right at my fingertips without having to go to a library, I still find technology difficult and glitchy. Technology has a lot of problems, and many of these problems aren’t easy to fix on your own. If there is a glitch in the system, the whole device is affected and becomes hard to use. For example, I experienced a glitch in this website when trying to set up my blog account. This prevented me from being able to do my work, which made me less efficient. So, although technology can be quick and handy, it has to be working smooth and efficiently, which isn’t always guaranteed.

Having a public blog means that others can view my work whenever they choose. This has both negative and positive effects. A negative effect is that not everyone is going to agree with the content I choose to make public. This can lead to arguments with my peers about certain topics. However, this can also be a positive effect. Seeing others react to my work and give feedback will allow me to see their perspective on a certain topic that may differ from mine. This will keep me openminded to what others have to say, and I may also learn from them and their view point.

 

 

About me!

Hello! My name is Jessica Deemer and I am a freshman at Muhlenberg College. I am from Bethlehem, Pennsylvania. I am a dancer and have been dancing since I was three years old. I am very close with my family and friends and love to spend time with them. I plan on majoring in psychology with a minor in business in the hopes of entering the field of Industrial Psychology one day.