Only thirty years ago, humans had to navigate life on their own without the help of the internet or any personal computing device. Today, almost every action we take is somehow linked to the internet. From simple everyday tasks like personal time management to more complex ones like online learning and working, the internet continues to play a massive role in our basic functioning. It can be said that life in the 20th century has simply become unimaginable without it, but as we grow increasingly dependent on technology, we also become lazier and less self-sufficient. It is therefore important to find balance in just how much we rely on the internet for the sake of our productivity and mental well-being.
In light of the COVID-19 pandemic that has circled the globe, schools and colleges around the world have begun operating online as a safety precaution. Classes are now being given on live video conferencing services rather than in physical classrooms, with some schools even using specialized software to run online examinations for their students. As a result, the need for students and professors to physically be on campus is eliminated, reducing the time and energy previously wasted on transportation. This has a positive impact not only on the classroom’s overall productivity but also on the environment. It is therefore unsurprising to see previously smog-ridden cities enjoying clear air after the 2020 lockdown.
In addition to that, the switch to online learning has also changed a lot in the way students are managing their academic responsibilities. The increased flexibility gives them more freedom to work at their own pace when compared to traditional learning, encouraging better self-reliance and time management. This can be especially helpful in cases of teamwork where students are required to collaborate, as working virtually with others can help in becoming a better leader. On top of that, the increased amount of time being spent on computers develops essential technical skills that are indispensable in the current era of digitization and personal computing.
It is undeniable that our current social life has a lot to thank the internet for. Social media and other online communication services have revolutionized the way we interact and build relationships and have also played a great role in spreading a more accepting and laid-back mentality worldwide. Some of the impact of social media can even be seen in real-life situations, like with the increasingly prevalent use of internet abbreviations in face-to-face conversations. The general absence of a filter in online social communications has also led to the normalization of using profane language, most prominently between teenagers and young adults.
Technology and the internet also contribute to numerous aspects of our lives besides socialization. Today, most companies and individuals run their workflows entirely on computers as opposed to using traditional physical documents. It has become impossible to imagine doing some of the most basic activities without having to involve our personal devices. We can now order takeout, book flights, schedule appointments, and even transfer money in seconds right from our phone. Online shopping is also rapidly replacing conventional shopping due to its convenience and ease of use, so whether you’re a parts geek or an antique item collector, you will always be able to find a suitable online marketplace to fulfill your desires.
The Impact of Modern Technology on the Environment
Nowadays, the environment must be considered with every step taken. Although the development of technology has provided us with a wide range of life facilitations, it has also negatively impacted the environment in many ways. For example, the widespread use of cars has obviously tremendously transformed our lives for the better but has also resulted in an increased amount of air pollution due to vehicle emissions. Many rare Earth elements that require a lot of energy to obtain are also essential in the manufacturing of electronic devices including tungsten, cobalt, and lithium. The increased demand for these materials consequently results in greater energy expenditure and hence more pollution.
On the bright side, many international companies have begun developing new strategies to mitigate environmental damage without having to reduce their output. Companies like Apple and others have already gone carbon-neutral and are switching to the use of recycled materials in their factories. Some are even researching the use of alternative renewable materials as it is cheaper and less toxic. In addition to that, new innovative inventions like electric cars and self-sufficient buildings are showing promising potential for the future of the environment. In fact, it is expected that electric cars constitute a quarter of car sales by 2025. As they begin to replace gasoline-fueled cars, the fumes emitted into the atmosphere are reduced, and so is the demand for fossil fuels.
It is difficult finding someone who doesn’t own a phone these days. From teenagers to adults, our personal devices constitute a lot of our daily lives. It can sometimes be scary to think about what might happen if certain technologies were to be put to nefarious use. Therefore, it is our ultimate responsibility to practice healthy online habits and take the necessary precautions to protect ourselves and the environment. As we advance forward and as technology becomes increasingly capable, maybe someday machine intelligence will be able to fully replace human intelligence.