It seems that nowadays people pay too much attention to technological advancements that promote information and interpersonal communication. In The Poet and the Computer, Norman Cousins argues that the “problem of technology is not solely to be more productive and comfortable, more content, but how to be more sensitive, more sensible, more proportionate, more alive. ” According to Cousins, the real problem of technology is whether it makes easier or harder for human to know who they are, to identify their real problems.
From my point of view, although technology allows people to live easily and efficiently, it cannot inspire people’s imagination, nor can it enrich human spirit. Computers can help people access all the information they desire-?new and old, however, as Cousins wrote, “electronic brains can reduce the profusion of dead ends involved in vital research, but they cannot eliminate the foolishness and decay that come from the unexamined life. ” It is undeniable that computer made a huge progress in human proficiency, but it also has limitations.
People cannot expect electronic brains to help them prevent failures, reflect failures n their lives. Electronic brains know how to decrease “the profusion of dead end”, but they never reflect those dead ends. Electronic brains are designed to provide the right answers. However, people should not only be satisfied with the results, but also the process. In Chinese schools, teachers often tell students that ” failure is the mother of success, you should not be afraid of making mistakes, but you have to learn something from failure, then to prevent it in the future. Therefore, solely depending on technology can only solve issues at hand, being reflective and inconsiderate is the key for human society to make progress. Computers can provide material to get people involved, but they do not identify with the real meaning of the information and stories that they produced. Many people believe that computers can provide the correct answers in the most convenient way. However, sometimes computers cannot process and analyze information to assist people in better understanding.
It can also lead to a dead-ended search in some way. Consequently, it is impossible to expect technology to answer the questions that people are filled with. Computer cannot replace human intelligence because technology serves as a medium to assist people in gaining information all over the world. How to further develop the information and to apply it in real lives are the main concerns that need human inputs. Even though technology helps people overcome the obstacles of time and space, it cannot tap into human emotional field.
As Cousin states in his article, “technology cannot connect a man to the things he has to be connected to-?the reality of pain in others; the possibilities of creative growth n himself; the memory of the race; and the rights of the next generation. ” In a “computerized time”, technology allows people to keep in touch anywhere any time, hence many people consider that social media such as Faceable and Twitter are appropriate for communication. Many of them even have become addicted to social networking. They spend hours looking through pictures, answering comments under each post, and chatting with different strangers.
Because social networking is so distracting, people often forget to communicate in the most influential way, which is face-to-face communication. Faceable does affect face-to-face communication because it often takes the expression and emotion out of communication. The Joy of actual seeing someone is crying or laughing is being taken away. A person can put his or her pictures of smiling faces on Faceable, but can others feel his or her emotion simply through that photo? People will become gradually disconnected if they spend too much time on social network rather than emotionally, personally connect with family and friends.
In modern days, people tend to believe that they can automatically get pleasure and enjoyment whenever they want. However, humans need emotional connection and face-to-face communication in order to experience others’ feelings and emotions. Technology has a negative effect on humans because it gives people a sense of accomplishment easily. People will indulge in the acceptability; hence decrease the ability to think by themselves. The main reason for this is technology gives people the opportunity to find answers that others have found before us.
People will be satisfied with the answers that was already given instead of coming up with new ideas on their own. As Cousins states, “The computer knows how to vanquish error, but before we lose ourselves in celebration of victory, we might reflect on the great advances in the human situation that have come about because men were challenged by error and dealing with it. ” Therefore, people should be aware that even though we are now able to access information rapidly and easily through the Internet than before, it is necessary for us to develop our own thinking ability to meet different challenges.
Without the process of struggle and dealing with difficulties, people will easily lose and forget the truths discovered by homeless. Once people start to solely rely on technology, the process of human society will move gradually slowly. Technology is a tool to help people perceive knowledge; and people cannot simply rely on it to solve all kinds of problems. For instance, Google translation is useful software for people to translate different languages. However, it can turn out to be a big problem if people use it in an improper way. In my seminar class, our professor talked about a story, which was related to the technological translation.
One of his students once used his mother’s engage to write a paper, and then translated it into English by Google’s translation. Unfortunately, Google’s translation could only translate the paper word by word, so that every sentence in the paper was broken. Later on, the student admitted that he translated his paper through Google translation. From this example, it is generally believed that people cannot predominately rely on technology. People should keep a skeptical eye towards the information, which is provided by technology, and then divide the information into useful and useless categories.
As Bacon said, “If we begin tit certainties, we shall end in doubts; but if we begin with doubts, and we are patient with them, we shall end in certainties. ” Consequently, people should not be satisfied with the certain answers produced by technology. It is necessary for people to get rid of the strong feeling of self-achievement which technology directly provides. Life is not the extension of technology, thus the primary purpose of technology should not be replacing human intelligence, but rather, facilitating human society progress. Technology will always serve as a tool for human intelligence no matter how powerful and strong it becomes.
Because humans have their own brains, they can create their own reality through imagination. According to Cousin, “The poet-?and I use the term to include all those who have respect for and speak to the human spirit-?can help to supply the subconscious with material to enhance its sensitivity, hence safeguarding it. ” Cousin uses poet to represent humans own imaginative thinking and creativity. He believes the human inputs should be kept as its original form. Therefore, it is important for humans to keep their own spirit and create their own reality, which technology can never replace.
We are now experiencing a time when people are easily overwhelmed and distracted. It is generally considered that technology has a negative influence on humans imagination and creativity. It detaches us from others’ pain and sorrow, and continuously spread a feeling of instant gratification. People should be able to use technology for facilitating themselves instead of replacing themselves.
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