November 18, 2019

Diagnosing Alone Together: Why we expect more from technology

Diagnosing
the Digital Revolution: Why It’s Grasp on our lives might be for the why it
might be  for the better or worse!

While reading an essay “Diagnosing
the digital revolution:  in this article,
writer Alison Gopnik, a professor of psychology and affiliate professor of
philosophy at the University of California at Berkeley. I came to the
conclusion that our reliance on technology might be sucking our souls away from
the real pleasures of life away from us. In this article Gopnik is talking
about Sherry Turkle’s new book, Alone Together: Why we expect more from
technology and less from each other.  Sherry
Turkle, is the Abby Rockefeller Maize Professor of the Social Studies of
Science and Technology at the Massachusetts Institute of Technology. In Alone
Together, MIT technology and society professor Sherry Turkle explores the power
of our new tools and toys to dramatically alter our social lives. (“Sherry
Turkle. “Ted Talks Connected But Alone, 30 Feb. 2012. Web. Feb 30. 2012.)  In the Video Turkle Describes we tend to
become less reliant on people because the technology from our devices is
basically encompassing the needs we would get from others, she also states that
children and adults who hesitate to use the phone because it seems awkward and
intrusive; it is much easier, they say to dash off a text or email. At the same
time, Turkle points out, because of this very convenience, people expect quick
responses, having experienced this first hand in life she might be on to
something, I’ve been in situations in which I haven’t responded in a short
manner, I had friends or loved who were truly upset, but I still got back to
them, maybe this is a sign that technology is making things worse? Why would it
matter that I didn’t respond back right away?

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Well Turkle describes the
anxiety of teenagers when they do not get an immediate reply to their text
messages. One girl talks about needing her cell phone for
“emergencies”; it turns out that what she means by
“emergency” is having a feeling without being able to share it, people
need that feeling of instant satisfaction nowadays. (Turkle, Sherry, Alone
Together: Why We Expect More from Technology and Less from Each Other New York:
Basic, 2011. Print.) Turkle shows how our Internet communications mix the
deliberate with the unconsidered. On the one hand, I can see how people put
great effort even into short email or text messages. On the other, they
“test” ideas and expressions in formation to see how others react.
Some create fake online profiles just to try out different sides of their
personality.

The problem with such
experimentation is that it is conditioned almost entirely by online reactions,
often reactions of strangers. There is little room to form thoughts
independently. By reading and understanding Gopnik’s arguments, the reader is
capable of engaging in deep thoughts that ask what makes something a
correlation effect or a causal effect. By evaluating whether something can be
causation or correlation, Gopnik leads into her question of why it is so hard
to tell whether technology is really affecting us. Gopnik’s interesting article
presses its reader to question technology and what is its effects. Many people,
for example, blame technology for the various negativity that occur in our
world today. She uses the instance where a girl skyping with her grandmother,
who lives a while away, guiltily emails a friend.  Many may say that this
demonstrates cons within technology. They might say that the girl’s
attention is divided when it should whole heartedly be given to her grandmother;
after all, no one knows how much longer the grandmother must live. However,
in all actuality, the opposition’s argument is quite flawed.  Alison Gopnik breaks down their argument and
refutes it peace in two basic parts. Gopnik first begins with the fact that
there was never a time when teenagers ever gave their grandparents their
complete and undivided attention. The fact of the matter is that whether
it’s technology behind the grandchild’s unfocused attention or any other
reason, the grandchild would still find a way to only pay partial
attention to their grandparents. Gopnik’s article then points out that the even if the grandmother was given the
undivided attention that the opposing side claims is so crucial for the betterment
of the grandchild, it is important to note how the undivided attention would be
given would be Skype. Skype is none other than a means of technology.

Many may say that this
demonstrates cons within technology. They might say that the girl’s attention
is divided when it should whole heartedly be given to her grandmother; after
all, no one knows how much longer the grandmother must live. However, in all
actuality, the opposition’s argument is quite flawed. Gopnik breaks down their
argument and refutes it peace in two basic parts. Gopnik first begins with the
fact that there was never a time when teenagers ever gave their grandparents
their complete and undivided attention. The fact of the matter is that whether
it’s technology behind the grandchild’s unfocused attention or any other
reason, the grandchild would still find a way to only pay partial attention to
their grandparents.  Gopnik’s article
then points out that the even if the grandmother was given the undivided
attention that the opposing side claims is so crucial for the betterment of the
grandchild, it is important to note how the undivided attention would be given
would be Skype. Skype is none other than a means of technology. Our thought
process has not changed due to digital media. The Internet has not provoked our
thought process to adapt a varied method of retaining information or relaying
it. Adaptive learning is cause, we learn what our brain has not been exposed to
yet. I’m sure that Alison Gopnik would not agree with what I’m suggesting, but
who better suggest it than an individual of this technological age. We created
this community through designing the kind that reflects us as a new culture.
Just as the great industrialists of the 18th century found sufficiency in the
use of metals, we of the 21sh century find solace in the digital world. We
cannot be classified as living in an outward community simply because we
utilize the technology of our time. To do this, would be of equal damage to
fault the Romans for using chariots as a means of transportation. It almost
seems reasonable for generations prior to ours to label us as having a
disconnect to reality.

Regardless of which period
they live in, what they hold dear, is what they know. We live in various
communities, non-separated or determined by reality, but understood by us the
people of the digital generation. Gopnik illustrates both sides, the arguments
for both pros and cons of technology, and ends up questioning whether
technology causes any of the present-day situations that people blame on
technology. The point she makes is that it is hard to tell whether something is
causation or correlation. Technology is not a cause to the negativity that the
opposing side presents in their argument. It is just a matter of correlation.
In the end, even if it was a matter of cause and effect, the pros of technology
outweigh what is claimed to be its cons, so it makes sense to make use of it by
reaping the best qualities that it provides

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