Humans create technology. They use it and are affected by its use either positively or negatively. With the changes in the lifestyles and demands of people, new advancements in technology also become high. Technological advancements have covered almost all spheres of human lives such as travelling, communication, medical facilities, education and learning, agriculture etc. Technology has its positive and negative influence on people, society and environment, however, its impact on our lives is determined by the way we use it.
The positive impacts can be seen in the form of simplified ways of doing things, time saving procedures, increased production, simplified communication, improved health care and learning procedures. However, there is always the other side of the picture. Despite being so useful for people, technology has some negative impacts on the society and environment. Technological advancements in every field of life have made people inactive.
People have become so dependent on technology that they do not want to work physically and consequently develop many health related complications. In the field of learning, the devices like computers and calculators have left less scope for the human brain to exercise. Besides, this technology has brought with it the problem of pollution that has affected our environment severely creating many risks to the health of the people.
Thesis statement: In the present paper, we are going to find out how technology has influenced people’s lives in different fields like medical, travelling, learning, communication, agriculture etc.
Directional sentence: Technology has its own advantages and disadvantages. Hence, it is important for the people to see both pros and cons of technology while creating and using technology in any field to ensure its positive impacts in future.
How technology influences medical care
Supporting Information: Technology has provided us improved health facilities and cure for various serious ailments. Technological advancement in the medical field has also influenced the longevity and mortality rate. Advanced equipments used in the health services have made it easier to diagnose and treat ailments like cancer and save people’s lives.
The constant research into human health problems and their treatment and drugs has helped in curing many challenging ailments. Neuroprosthetic Chips for treating seizures and Artificial Wombs to grow embryo outside a woman’s womb are some of the examples of the ultra modern developments in medical care. Some other advanced medical technologies are “Nanocomposite Contact Lenses used to treat diabetes, Robotic surgeons, Multimodality Hybrid Imaging technology that detects prostate cancer etc” (Ramey, “Technological Advancements”, Para 5).
Technological advancements in the field of health care have proven useful for people; however, it also affects people negatively if the expenses are exorbitantly high. Advanced drugs and vaccines have contributed to the increased longevity and decreased mortality rate. It is a boon to the developed nations but developing countries, sometimes, witness its adverse impact on the population balance.
How technology influences travelling
Supporting information: Technology has affected travelling drastically through advancements in the field of transportation and thus benefitting the society and business immensely. The advancements in road transport, air transport and water transport has made people’s lives much easier and comfortable. People can commute from one place to another in less time with more convenience. Technological development in space transport has proven that technology can make things possible considered as impossible and were beyond our imagination (Ramey, “Technology and Society”, Para 2).
However, with the increase in comfort and luxury there are certain discomforts that are the outcome of the improved technology in transportation. The burning of fossil fuels like petrol diesel and coal etc are responsible for highly polluted roads and surroundings that may cause many serious respiratory health hazards in people.
The cases of death and disabilities consequential to road accidents are increasing extremely. Besides posing risk to people’s lives, the consumption of petroleum in the transportation system has escalated the prices of petroleum products by putting extra burden on the people. However, there have been efforts and researches in this field for finding better alternative fuels and making energy efficient engines (Mathew & Rao, 2006).
How technology has influenced communication
Supporting information: Communication has been a powerful medium of transferring information among people. Technology has brought about massive advancement in the field of communication. With the technological advancement over the years, there have been many developments in the communication technology. Smart phones serve many other purposes besides making calls. Besides many other useful functions, now it is possible to see people we are communicating with.
The powerful mediums of communication like radio, television, internet and social media have affected the lives of people by facilitating faster and convenient communication of ideas and information. Social media plays a vital role in communicating views of people and connecting the world together. The present day political scenario is also highly affected by the internet and social media where political leaders communicate with people and people exchange their views amongst themselves on crucial issues (Ramey, “Technology and Society”, Para 3).
Technological advancements in communication have affected the businesses and organizations to reach the world markets in reduced time and cost. It has helped the small business to gain the competitive advantage. “A good example is 3G and 4G broadband, small businesses have taken advantage of this super fast internet to reach the target markets with less cost of operation” (Ramey, “Technological Advancements”, Para 3).
The technological development in the communication mediums like radio, television, internet and social media such as Facebook, Twitter etc. play an important role in influencing people’s views, entertaining them and circulating information throughout the world in no time. Schoolchildren can collaborate outside the classroom, exchange their views, and do their assignments. However, if not used appropriately, social media may have negative impacts too such as cyber bullying and online harassment, sexting (circulating sexually explicit information via cell phones, computers etc.)
There is another phenomenon called Facebook depression that is majorly associated with teens. The online world is also seen as posing threat to the emotional integrity of the adolescents and generating a feeling of depression in them. “The main risk to preadolescents and adolescents online today are risk from each other, risk of improper use of technology, lack of privacy, sharing too much information about themselves and others” (O’Keefe & Clarke-Pearson, 2011,Para 11).
Modern online communication technologies have brought the world together, but we have lost connections with the people in our neighbourhood. Spending too much time with our devices detracts us from our real world relationships. Depending excessively on the cell phones and internet is like an addiction that separates us from the real world (Parker-Pope, 2010).
The depletion of natural resources (like aluminium) for making the devices like mobile phones and computers is also an increasing problem that affects the nature and environment adversely.
How technology influences education and learning
Supporting information: Like other spheres of life, technology has affected education system and learning processes. Technologies used in the modern education system like smart whiteboards, ipads and computers have improved the standards of education throughout the world. Internet has played a key role in bringing about radical changes in learning processes. Knowledge about anything and anywhere is easily accessible with internet. Imparting education through visual aids has improved the learning of the subjects in a more lucid and comprehensive manner (Ramey, “Technology and Society”, Para 4).
Patricia Greenfield, UCLA professor and the director of the Children’s Digital Media Center, Los Angeles thinks that technology plays a significant part in our lives, but it has also affected our ability of critical thinking and analysing negatively. Younger generation has no interest in reading for pleasure that is helpful in developing our thinking and imaginative powers.
It is necessary to balance visual media use with classroom discussions and reading. According to her, “No one medium is good for everything. If we want to develop a variety of skills, we need a balanced media diet. Each medium has cost and benefits in terms o f what each develops” (“Is Technology Producing A Decline In Critical Thinking And Analysis”, 2009, Para5).
How technology influences agriculture
Supporting information: There have been many technological innovations in the field of agriculture too. Mechanized farming and advancement in producing genetically modified
foods have contributed in increasing the production of crops. Besides, factory farming has helped in providing food at low prices to a vast population. These genetically modified foods are capable of producing higher amounts of nutrients such as golden rice that can originate vitamin A. “Transgenic crops may provide increased profits to the farmer while providing cheaper and nutritious food. Genetic engineering has also helped make crops available that could not otherwise tolerate adverse environmental conditions (drought, cold, high salt levels in the soils, etc.)” (Chandran, 2001, Para 7).
However, these technological advancements do pose risk to the natural balance of ecosystem and factory farming and genetically modified food may be hazardous to people’s health in many ways. Transgenic foods may develop some allergies. Tran genes may pose threat to the ecosystem as they flow through pollution into other organisms. There have been examples of certain organisms such as the Japanese ladybug that was firstly introduced as biological control means but turned out to be a trouble later. Genetically created foods lack diversity and may be susceptible to natural disasters (Chandran, 2001).
“The intensive farming practices deplete the soil. This makes heavy application of the commercial fertilizers necessary to yield healthy harvest, but also these fertilizers have chemicals which are dangerous to the soil and human lives” (Ramey, “Technology and Society”, Para6).
Technology has contributed immensely to the people and society by providing better health care, transport, learning procedures, communication and entertainment and sufficient food. It has made people’s life convenient and comfortable. Technology has conquest the world swiftly and social progress is now equated with technical progress. However, technological development does not ensure improved ends and may be hazardous if not used adequately and intelligently. Man has created technology and he should use it wisely for his benefit.
Chandran, Rakesh. Genetic engineering- Part 2: Pros and cons of genetically engineering crops. 2001.
Mathew, Tom & Rao, Krishna 2006, “Role of transportation in society”. Chapter 3. Introduction to Transportation Engineering. PDF File.
O’Keeffe, Gwenn Schurgin & Clarke-Pearson, Kathleen. “The impact of social media on children, adolescents and families”, Pediatrics, 13 (2011): 800 -804.
Parker-Pope, Tara. “An ugly toll of technology: Impatience and forgetfulness.” The New York Times. 6 June 2010: A 13.
Ramey, Karehka. Technological advancements and their effects on humanity. 2014.
Ramey, Karehka. Technology and society: Impact of technology on society. 2014.