Commentary: Do not let technology take over your life

We should use technology only when necessary


  Many science fiction novels have been written about the ever-growing presence of technology, with many focusing on the potential danger and  control that technology can have over society.

  HAL from “2001: A Space Odyssey” comes first to mind, as he – or rather it – is a quintessential example of technology being too smart for humanity and turning against the human race.  

  And though some of these works such as “2001”  seem far-fetched and overly imaginative, reality might be that the consequences of technology are not as aggrandized as people think.


It encourages people to be antisocial and have a proclivity for isolation rather than relationships.

— Andrew Yung

 Here we are in 2017 without flying cars and without time-traveling machines.

Yet at the same time, feats such as self-driving cars, self-sufficient robots and a computer that can calculate anything in mere milliseconds have all been designed and achieved.

  We also live in a society where technology is heavily prevalent, as almost everyone has either a computer, a phone or a television, and many have all three.

  So while technology might not physically be overpowering us, it definitely has begun to take over our lives.

  For instance, though phones were designed to enhance communication between people, studies show that cellphones have actually inhibited communication, which is rather counterintuitive.

  A study by the Association of Computer Machinery found that communicating through cell phones, while convenient, inhibited conversation because as humans, 93 percent of the communication we do is nonverbal.

  That means even though we use our words to talk to one another, only 7 percent of communication can be gained through messages.

  Personally, I’ve had plenty of times where just words have not been enough.

  Countless times I’ve detected sarcasm that was never there, or thought someone was mad when really it was just me adding the angry tone when reading the message.

  Besides inducing misinterpretation, phones also make us less social.

  At parties and at meetings, people have started focusing less and less on each other and more and more on their phones, resorting to the tiny screen in their hands rather than the warm faces of those around them.

  Perhaps it is because technology has given us a new sense of comfort. Technology is often well within our comfort zones, and we would rather look at our phones than talk to strangers, or stay at home and watch television rather than go out to parties.

  And while this sense of comfort might give us temporary pleasure, it does not help us in the long run because it encourages people to be antisocial and have a proclivity for isolation rather than relationships. It encourages people to be antisocial and have a proclivity for isolation rather than relationships.

  Don’t get me wrong. I am not calling for an entire banishment of technology. It is still wonderful and abounding in information, and it is used for many good things. It just shouldn’t be a crutch.

  Instead, we should only use our technology when absolutely necessary.