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[January 11, 2014]
Is internet making us lazy? ; Young Reporter [Grimsby Telegraph (UK)]
(Grimsby Telegraph (UK) Via Acquire Media NewsEdge) FILM makers and writers predicted the 21st century to be the height of modern technology; hover cars and teleportation, X-ray vision and laser guns.
Technology hasn't moved as fast as once predicted but the arrival of this century has brought with it constant internet access, phones with built-in cameras, palm-size portable computers and the ability to communicate face-to-face with people 1,000 miles away.
The young generation has grown up with these technologies, having their every question answered by a screen in front of them but has this made people lazy? It's been said we live in a three-click society; if you can't find what you're looking for in three clicks then the information's not out there, or so we're led to believe.
Before technology, people relied on books to gain information, having to sift through pages to find the answer to their questions.
Surely a search engine providing masses of information is much more efficient in today's fast moving society, but has this diminished our creativity, attention spans and perseverance? There's also the argument that the knowledge we gain at the click of a button is not reliable. Pages like Wikipedia can be edited by anyone, information is paraphrased and changed, just like in a game of Chinese whispers information is passed down and perceived differently and when it reaches us it could have been greatly changed but we accept it as a correct source of information. Whilst computers are incredibly intelligent, performing tasks in seconds, there's no doubt that the human brain is still the most intelligent and reliable component in the world. The older generation are new to this world of technology, not growing up with it then having it thrust into their lives can be a confusing and unwanted concept. Many of the older generation prefer the sense of achievement they gain from finding their own information through hard work and patience but they could be missing out on important information.
Similarly, the younger generation could be missing out on the process of reading books and that personal sense of achievement and knowledge gained.
Through talking to other young people I've learnt that they do in fact enjoy the process of reading a paper book compared to finding information on the internet or reading on a Kindle.
Although there has been a decline in newspaper readership over the past few years due to the introduction of new technologies, there is still a great demand for the continuing production of books and newspapers. North East Lincolnshire council is currently discussing funding cuts being applied to libraries, which could affect the availability of libraries to the public.
In previous protests against the cuts in Lincolnshire, people of all different ages turned up, showing their support for libraries and their enjoyment of reading. With how fast technology is moving it's possible that in a few years libraries could become completely electronic, with everyone owning a Kindle to hire their books, meaning the destruction of the social library space and thousands of jobs. For many, the library is known as a welcoming, calm space to relax, but as society moves forward there is a fear that there will be no time for unwinding in a book, leaving the older generation behind. Where the internet is efficient in quickly learning the answer to your questions, as a way of communication or as an entertainment factor, it can never replace the creativity and efforts found in a book. The internet should be acknowledged for its useful addition to this society, but we shouldn't forget the past; people have different preferences in regards to everything in life.
We cannot sum up our generation as lazy due to the internet, the same as 100 years ago, some will choose to explore, read and persevere whilst some will choose to have information given to them with no will to explore.
The internet is useful in giving people a choice of resources to help them through life and can be used effectively alongside books.
Old generations and new should embrace these new technologies but not exploit them and should continue to rely on our own minds.
(c) 2014 ProQuest Information and Learning Company; All Rights Reserved.
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