Technology Makes Our Life Easier Essay

Joan Chittister has long been one of my favorite writers and always leads me to new insights and heights of understanding. Her most recent effort centered, of all things, on a bathtub. And what she did was hammer home an important fact of life in this speedway, helter-skelter 21st century. This is the way she put it:

“Just remember this: the cast-iron bathtub was first produced in 1870. The telephone went commercial in 1887. Just imagine: if you had been born in 1870 you could have spent seventeen years in the bathtub without being interrupted by the telephone.”

That charming, oh-so-provocative story rang the bell in my belfry that holds modern technology at arms' length. Yes, like all of us, I indulge (perhaps “surrender to” is the better way of saying it). Within limits, I’m a man of my time…sort of. Computers, TVs, cell phones, and a few other gadgets somehow or other crept into my house over the years.

One thing's for sure and contrary to advertised claims: they are not always my servants. In fact, too often they become my master. For example, when my computer decides to have a nervous breakdown it takes me along for the bumpy ride into Neverland. Its lesser spasms are also contagious.

Look, it’s not that I want to indulge myself for 17 years by luxuriating in the bathtub without being interrupted by a ringing phone.

But even the marvelous invention of the telephone offers another example of periodic growing estrangement. What has always been a love affair with anything that brings me into closer contact with my children and close friends is becoming the infamous third party in a threatening divorce. (You can also spell that “turd.”)

One especially annoying example is the service known as “Call Waiting.” You know call waiting, don’t you? You should, because you’re the one who waits. That’s the ill-mannered means of interrupting an ongoing phone chat, putting the person to whom you’re talking on hold and answering the incoming call. In effect, it says, “Hey, you wait! Someone else is calling me, and without knowing who it is, I’m going to make you waste your time while I find out.” That’s not my definition of manners or respect.

Contrarily, if for whatever reason you’re picky about whom you do not want to talk to, there’s that service known as “Caller I.D.” That’s akin to the peephole in the front door. With Caller I.D. there are no surprises. If you don’t want to talk, you don’t have to. The persona non grata caller is cold-shouldered without even knowing it.

Those are just two small examples of the technology puppy that has grown into a hound dog eating us out of house and home.

Notice, I haven’t even mentioned cell phones. Yes, I have one. But I still take my pictures with a camera using that old-fashioned thing called film. For the same reason I never bought a wireless-G broadband router, a Sony 4GB Video MP3 player, or a 5510 Cordless Desktop and Optical Mouse Combo. And while I have a lap, it is not topped.

Yes, I know - you’ve probably concluded I don’t iPod, text message, or have a strawberry…or what’s it called, oh yeah… a blackberry. You’re right.

Resisting such overwhelming odds may seem to put me at a disadvantage in today’s world and lagging behind the parade. But as I see it, entering the race and submitting to the whip of every new gadget puts those who succumb at peril. Going online and all that implies in today’s technological world can too often result in being hung out to dry on that line.

No, I’m not going to turn off or throw out my phone and sit in a bathtub for the rest of my life. But this is for absolute sure: I’m not going to get out of that bathtub to answer the phone.

Call me prehistoric if you will. Label me out of touch, passed by, blind resister, or any other designation. But please…do not call me after 10 p.m.

Essayist George Berdes spends part of the year in Milwaukee and the warmer months in the Northwoods. Many of his essays originally ran in a weekly series on WXPR in Rhinelander, and now appear at his blog, "East of Eagle River."

Essayist George Berdes has some thoughts on the double-edged sword that is technology.

  • NO communication between people

    They do not have any courage to speak to anyone, they find it easier to chat on internet systems instead of talking to the same person face to face. Have you ever watched Suite Life on Deck? There is this one episode where Woody place a game with this girl he likes and wants to talk to her but never does because he doesn't have the courage.

  • Reverse Evolution

    No, technology has not made the world an easier place to live in. While day to day tasks have become easier, it has been at the price of social interaction and the ability to think for one's self.

    People don't remember information, they expect to be able to pull out their phone and be able to type in their question on Google for an immediate answer. Proper grammar and spelling are not followed because a computer can check that so most people don't even bother to work on those skills.

    More importantly, technology has severely impacted humans' ability to interact with one another. People are not polite, do not utilize manners, play with their phones or Ipads when they are supposed to be speaking with another person, and even choose to isolate themselves completely from others for the sake of spending time with their technological devices.

    We are in the midst of reverse evolution partly due to our technology addiction.

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  • Its made the planet negative

    We take what we have for granted, instead of spending quality time with the family we're on our devices. Sending streaks, checking updates. Non of that's essential. Technology causes body problems, its a breeding area for bullies, and we rely on it.

    1.Our heads are down more than up. Which also causes neck pains, today’s daily habits include devices, people think it is a necessity for daily needs.



    2.Soon enough people will not know how to communicate properly because technology has taken over the present and soon the future. Talking to people on your device is easier than talking face to face, it’s the breeding grounds for bullies.


    3.People rely on technology more than you think, kids these days has been brought up with technology and it’s their boredom buster. Parenting is easier with technology, you place a device in front of them and their curiosity just glows. Think about it now, what happens if you take the technology off them? That’s the real question. J

  • Technology has caused obliviation,

    We have made all of these wonderful inventions that are making our lives easier, while destroying our home. We have made countless things to endanger the environment but we have not made enough to save the environment and counteract the bad things. People have become oblivious to the bad things in the world because picture after picture after picture of the good things are being shoved in their faces. Not enough people have their eyes open to helping counteract the technology. We can fight fire with fire; or save the planet from technology using technology because there's already so much technology that there's not other way to stop it.

  • I do not believe that technology has made life easier.

    Technology breaks down and glitches, there could be false information when you look something up. With technology there is always a distraction so things that are priorities get pushed back. Technology keeps us up to date with the newest trends, you become absorbed in those trends that you start to lose focus on who you are and become more fixated on the latest bandwagon. With technology your private life becomes nonexistent, if you want to learn about someone all you have to do is google them or search them up on a social media and all of a sudden a complete stranger knows everything about you. You also lose the ability to interact with others which a needed life skill.

  • It's a negative thing in the world.

    We are losing human to human social skills because now all we do is send a quick text or email them. We talk to each other face to face, amd we don't call the person we want to talk to. We are also getting lazier, because all we want to do now is stay on the couch and watch tv and play video games instead of go outside and get some exercise. Also technology can break down on you and then you are helpless because we don't have textbooks anymore because they have become all digital.

  • It has not

    Some technology has not made the world any easier to live in. In the world there's people who don't have the money for items other than actual needs and technology is not one of them. Technology glitches, breaks, gets stolen and it is another unnecessary thing for people to worry about.

  • Technology has no made the world easier

    Everyone is becoming lazier and lazier. Their iPads and iPhones are glued to their hands and people now days barely know how to communicate with one another face to face. They just want to "shoot you a text" or call you. Instead of playing outside kids want to play on their moms phone or ipad. If the world keeps forcing us to use technology, our world will become so lazy it will be sad. They can argue technology helps save trees but what about all the negative effects technology has on our body?

  • It has a negative effect of people and the society

    People just rely on the phone to communicate and figure who's where and what's going on. When you could easily just walk or go to that persons house and figure it out. There is a lot if cyber bullying and just people are rude on social media, which thru can control nut they don't choose too. And a lot of people text and drive or talk on the phone drive and it causes a lot of wrecks and people dying. When all it takes is just for you to ignore that call or ménage until you have come to your destination or just pull over somewhere and take care of it. It's a loss of communication with families and parents. It's sad. Now a days kids don't even ask parents for advice or if they are having problems. It's important to have a relationship with your family.

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