Working in the Internet industry, it is my job to research the latest developments in the web and general computer world. Spending a lot of time working with new technologies has resulted in me having a bit of a love/hate relationship with my computer. Being a web developer really is the ultimate battle of man verses machine. Sadly, I am convinced that the machine is ultimately going to win this war.
Fundamentally developments in technology have really benefited mankind. However, our increasing reliance on modern technology does leave me slightly worried sometimes. I’ll explain what I mean.
A few years ago a sub station exploded in my town. I’m not sure whether a man called Achmed was standing anywhere near it at the time but the point is it caused absolute chaos.
The entire town came to a standstill. Supermarkets had to shut down because all their freezers had stopped working and there was no lighting. All the shops had to close because all the tills are electrical and hooked up to their computerized accounting systems, as well as the fact that no shopkeeper would know how to do mental arithmetic anyway. People in their homes had no lighting and couldn’t cook because their ovens were electric. Not that they had anything to eat because everything in their fridge had melted. People couldn’t even wash because their washing machines are all electric and a lot of people have electric boilers so couldn’t shower.
Of course a power outage means no television and no Internet connection. This would upset a lot of people because they would not only miss Eastenders but they wouldn’t even be able to log onto Facebook to inform all their friends that they have no power. The world as they know it would end.
Let’s face it technology has made people lazy. Most jobs now just require people to sit on their backside in front of a computer. Jobs that used to involve manual labour have largely been replaced by machinery and people are generally getting less exercise because computers are doing everything for them. You don’t even have to leave your house to go shopping any more for heaven’s sake.
Then of course there is the social impact. Kids don’t play outside any more. Instead they stay in doors and chat to people on Facebook or MSN and bare their private parts to complete strangers on web cams. Or else they are playing Grand Theft Death Stab Kill Murder 3 on the Xbox Wee or something like that. This would explain why most young people today have no real social skills.
Mankind survived the last ice age but I’m not so sure we will survive the next major disaster because we are just far too dependent on technology and very few humans are adequately self-sufficient. Still, with the rate of technological developments, I think giant meteors and Mount Yellowstone are the least of our worries. I think our biggest threat will come from machines rising up and taking over.
For all I trump on about Google taking over the world, I really hope they don’t because the trouble with Google is their stuff works. If Google’s machines rise up and take control, the human race will be screwed. That is why I’m now rooting for Microsoft. At least with Microsoft we could just hide underground and wait for the inevitable blue screen of death and message saying that the destroyer of mankind has experienced a fatal exception and needs to close.