The technology available in this century in our society is not too much. Technology density in our society is relative to our ability to use technology effectively without feeling overwhelmed. Since our society has yet to face an excess in the current availability and use of technology, the argument that there is too much technology in our society cannot suffice. The creation of new technology is in tandem with research into better and faster ways of performing tasks that have already been conceived in our society; therefore, the fruitful implementation of new technology fills existing gaps. This century has witnessed an unmatched realization of the use of technology compared to previous centuries. This fact does not imply that there is too much technology in our society.
Much of the technological advancement in this century has happened in transport and communications, medicine, engineering through new products, new methods, and improvements on the old ways. The realization of new technology gets faster due to the geometric increase of research and development initiatives, as well as the increased rate at which research methods and techniques are developed. More rapid techniques, coupled with newer technologies, are significantly shortening the turnaround period of coming up with new technological inventions.
In this century, the information overload witnessed in our society does not infer that there is too much technology. Information overload arises from a huge appetite for the information that surpluses the individual know-how of processing the data. Technology has not led to an information explosion; instead, it has accelerated the speed through which information moves. Interconnectivity of computers and computing devices, improvement in the speed of virtual and physical transport, and the creation of numerous information capture and dissemination devices have created various avenues for accessing information.
As argued above, user demand captured through research into various ways of improving the way of living forms the essence of the development of faster transportation or super connectivity of computers and computing devices.
Technology advancement does not exclusively happen without users of the technology. The unquenchable thirst for new and better makes it futile to hope that there will come a time when the need for new technology will cease. The improvement of living standards in different parts of the world leads to a shift of focus from the obvious fulfillment of basic needs to the needs ranked higher on the hierarchy of needs formulated by psychologist Abraham Maslow (Simons, Irwin, and Drinnien p.45-48).
Our society enjoys better living standards than societies of previous centuries. Also, our society faces fewer challenges in fulfilling the basic psychological needs described by Maslow because of improved technology. The reader should note that technology serves as a means of acquiring or modifying resources to fulfill our needs without the exclusion of technology itself (Simons, Irwin, and Drinnien p.45-48).
Technology realization follows a universal sequence of moving from one state to a better state. In this case, better refers to improvement in all aspects of the technology or technology device. Such improvement can be in the looks, functionality, efficiency, effects, and size. An example of constant improvement happens in the manufacturing industry. The use of non-renewable materials in the manufacture of new technological devices necessitates further research into recycling or discovering renewable alternatives to cushion manufacturers against industry shortages of the raw material and its substitutes.
Technology is the process of modifying natural elements to suit a human need. Technology is also developing relevant skills and creating appropriate tools to assist in the extraction and modifying of natural elements as deemed suitable. This definition of technology encompasses the existing new technology and discarded technology (Kubesh, McNeil, and Bellotto, p.10). In education, the use of a board and chalk amounts to technology implementation, albeit an inferior one, in the same way, the use of computer systems is a technological implementation. The invention of fire before the current century was a technological invention in the same way the invention of high-resolution multi-touch screen display panels is.
With the definition of technology given above, it is erroneous to infer that there is too much technology in society. A feasible argument would be that there is a significant increase in technological sophistication in the current century. However, such an argument is not absolute because sophistication is relative. As our society progresses, newer and more sophisticated technologies appear. Therefore, the current technology cannot be the most sophisticated. The invention of the matchbox and the gas burner was notable technological inventions that caught the attention of every person who encountered them. Such former notable technologies are now commonplace items regarded as ordinary everyday phenomena. In the same way, what appears to dazzle now as shiny new brilliance will fade into normalcy as soon as a better equivalent item or process finds use in day-to-day applications (Gerber para.1-4).
Why People See Too Much Technology Where There is None
Those, who argue that there is too much technology, base their argument on a biased approach to the question of technology quantity and usage. In most cases, when quoting technology, computers and computing devices like mobile phones are referred to as the only technology available (Dubois para. 4-8). The erroneous reference of technology leaves out all the technology that has moved beyond dazzling to commonplace.
Such technology includes engines, writing, electricity, and motoring. In addition to a biased look at computers and computing devices only, the erroneous view does not measure the actual usage of the technology mentioned against the efficiency and effects of the usage. After taking measures, the results only reflect the area measured and should not be used to hypothesize on the overall availability of technology in this century.
Computers are indeed the most notable technological development of this century and their interconnectivity. As argued above, user needs for connectivity are responsible for the wide adoption of computer use. The effect of computers in phasing out other technologies has been profound, and perhaps this is the reason behind the claim of too much technology. An increase in the use of computers and the internet will have positive or negative effects on society, depending on the know-how and intentions of the users.
Apart from the computing and information technology field, there has been a major technological breakthrough in this century, namely electric car engines and jet engines, new fuels, increased efficiency in electricity generation, medical research breakthroughs in new medicine and surgery methods as well as telemedicine, product design of various consumer goods among other technology improvements.
To sum up, it is erroneous to discard previous technology use when analyzing the total availability of technology in our society in this century. Secondly, the examination of the use of computers and the effects of information overload is a biased analysis of the argument of too much technology. This paper has pointed out that unless users face overwhelming demand from technology, then the case of too much technology does not suffice.
Dubois, Michelle. Is there such a thing as too much technology? 2009. Web.
Gerber, Karin. Technology Today is always changing. 2011. Web.
Kubesh, Katie, Niki McNeil and Kimm Bellotto. Technology. Coloma, MI: In the Hands of a Child, 2009.
Simons, Janet A, Donald B Irwin and Beverly A Drinnien. Psychology – The search for understanding. New York, NY: West Publishing Company, 1987.