Technology

The other week we read “Better than Fixing Things” by Elmo Stoll. The man in the story is easy to relate to. I know if I was put in the same situation I would not even think about living without “electrical appliances and labor-saving, comfort producing gadgets,” but the citizens from the town he moved to live every day without them. When I picture the appliances mentioned in the chapter I imagine items such as a dishwasher and a washing machine. After reading this and processing it I instantly thought of the phrase “first world problems” because those appliances to me are normal, but to others they are a luxury. Likewise to the man in the story, those appliances are nothing special because everyone has them and we do not picture life without them until we physically see it. The man in the story saw a whole different life; I have also seen a life like this when I went to Brazil. There I saw people live a simple life no appliances, no technologies just basic items to survive. After witnessing this I understood how it was possible to live without items I consider common necessities, but I did not want to accept that fate.
I agree to a certain point with Stoll that technology is controlling people, but I do not think it is a bad thing. I believe that once people become accustomed to a certain lifestyle with a certain amount of technology, it is difficult for them to change that lifestyle because that is what they consider normal. This is illustrated by the man in the story. He grew up and became accustom to electrical appliances, thus it would be very difficult for him to alter his lifestyle and now live without them. I think of my life now and everything I have and I cannot imagine living without the technologies I grew up with. For example, I am accustomed to having a television and a mac laptop and if one day I went somewhere where I could not have those things I would not know what to do.
The Amish live a very simple life, a life I know I would never be able to live. I do not believe their lifestyle is wrong, as they somewhat believe our lifestyle is. As stated early, once you become accustomed to a certain lifestyle that is what you consider normal. The Amish view no cars as normal as I consider mac laptops normal; that does not make either one of us wrong. After going a few hours without my cell phone and not knowing where it was this past week, I realized that I am very accustomed to my lifestyle and I would not be able to change it. Technology has power, but it is not everything. I believe I can still have a similar personality and similar morals as an Amish person because to me people are derived from the people around them not the technology they use.

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2 Comments

  1. I agree we have become very dependent on technology which makes it even harder to try not to use it. It is interesting how the Amish view our technology, not being evil however just something that might be getting out of our hands as they refered to. I feel the same way about not being able to go without a phone or laptop. I could only do that for about a week until I needed to contact people.

  2. I agree that now a days most people are relying upon technologies just like addicting to drugs. It is hard for me to give up or not touch my laptop. Once we have found a way to while away time in a fun way (by technologies), we have found a solution to farewell the boring time. Relying on technology is not a bad thing, we might use them just to done something easily, or at least get the problem solved, on the other hand, with people who live without technologies, they get problems solved without technology. So, the problem of using or not using technology is nonsense, the goal is to solve the problem.

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