The Pros and Cons of Technology
As far back as I can remember my family and I have taken advantage of technology. The types of technology have changed over the years, along with our usage and dependence on it. Technology is a fundamental part of our lifestyle, including both work and play. What is interesting is that we also have many friends who use very little technology in their day-to-day living. This drastic difference makes one wonder how necessary the technology really is, and whether or not our dependence on it is healthy in the long run. It is really easy to just get caught up in using technology without thinking about the pros and cons.
I was born in the 80’s, so technology as, I know it, was beginning to take aim at the mainstream United States and the world. I grew up in an era of change, whether or not this change is good is yet to be determined. When I talk about technology I am making reference to computers, automation, and most “new age” technology. My first exposure to computers was at my dad’s lab at the University of Michigan Dearborn. The computer was ancient by today’s standards, but at the time it was a marvel of technological triumph. When I was five we bought a home personal computer (pc) for my mother to write papers and utilize the Internet. I became increasingly fascinated with the possibilities the computer brought be and I was hooked. In school we had little Apple 2Es that only worked when they wanted to but we still used them every day.
My mother had a large influence on my relationship with technology. First of all, she felt strongly enough to ban video games and most television shows the first ten years of my life. I started to test educational software for children when I was five because my mother’s friends publish The Children’s Software Revue. We observed that most children’s software was stereotypic. The games were focused on boys and were designed by men. The limited software made specifically for girls contained no problem-solving or strategy except possible the choice of what to wear. My mother purposely made my sister use technology and computers to become interested in a field that at the time was dominated by men. So, basically I had to learn computing on my own. Video games were a huge interest of mine and still are. I can remember the day my best friend snuck over with the latest in animated violence, “Mortal Combat”. Let me tell you, once my mother witnessed my “virtual decapitation” of my friend in quite a gruesome manner, we weren’t allowed to touch the television for a week.
I started middle school when we moved to Rochester Hill’s from Ann Arbor. Our new blended family (my mother remarried) had several computers and other new technological devices, as did most of the homes in the affluent community in which we lived. Home pc’s became a useful tool in middle school; I surfed the net, wrote papers, and researched articles over the Internet. My whole family became engulfed with the technology...