How do we choose to have our new and rapidly evolving tools and capabilities impact our lives as individuals, organizations and as a global society? In order to make a smart choice, it is imperative that we have a good understanding of the impact digital technology already has or can have on our lives.
How do we choose to have our new and rapidly evolving tools and capabilities impact our lives as individuals, organizations and as a global society? In order to make a smart choice, it is imperative that we have a good understanding of the impact digital technology already has or _can have _on our lives. What can we say with a degree of certainty?
If you work in tech, or you are interested in technology — or basically, if you’re human and you own a smartphone/laptop/pc — this is relevant to you.
Regardless of the debate if digital technology is more helpful or more harmful: the technology and how we use it does have a significant impact on our lives, for better or for worse. Let’s make a conscious decision for what we want that impact to be.
Digital technology is now at the core of human endeavors and of history as it unfolds. The spread of Covid-19 was monitored using digital technologies and it was the simple, lowly smartphone that brought to light the blatant murder of American citizens by the very police officers sworn to protect them.
The social unrest and political actions ensuing can be either exacerbated or de-escalated using the same technological capabilities.
Smart, digital technology is going to help us restore our work life and the global economy over the upcoming months or years.
The technology in and of itself is neutral.
26% of car accidents in US were caused by smartphone distraction in 2014. Smartphone usage is linked to a decrease in focus and productivity in workers. Studies have linked the increase of suicide rates in young people to an increase in the use of social media and mobile phones.
Being distracted and anything other than in the moment has become the norm.
At the same time, digital technology made the Arab Spring possible.
Digital technology makes our lives so much easier in so many ways; it makes it easier to get where you’re going, to know what weather it’s going to be.
It’s making it possible for you and I to connect, right now.
The technology in and of itself is neutral. The problem, as the Architect reminds Neo in The Matrix, is choice.
How do we choose to have our new and rapidly evolving tools and capabilities impact our lives as individuals, organizations and as a global society?
In order to make a choice, it is imperative that we have a good understanding of the impact digital technology already has or _can have _on our lives.
In order to do that, in this article, I have compiled research on the trends in (over)usage of digital technology; the positive and negative effects it has, and some philosophical discussion on the impact on our psyche to understand if we should be speaking about “dependency” or addiction in the first place.
And broader, to understand the general impact of tech in our lives better.
Addiction or dependency in this article will be used only as a proxy for the worst or most detrimental effects technology can have on us. If we understand tech addiction better, and we understand the general positive and negative effects of technology better, I’m sure we can all make better choices.
On a personal note, I wrote a book on the effect of digital technology on our lives. I wrote this book partly because I discovered I was heavily “addicted” to my smartphone and was headed toward burnout. When speaking to people about this book, I often have a hard time explaining the importance and relevance of the subject.
I hope this article will help me drive my point home.
What is my point? My point is that we need to make a conscious, balanced choice as to how we allow technology to affect us.
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