Wednesday, August 02, 2006

Technology - friend or foe?

I got involved in an interesting discussion today about whether technology has diminished social interaction.

My view is the opposite - I think technology can actually increase social interaction as long as the technology is used wisely and effectively. I have many friends around the world I have never met – maybe never will meet and that is totally down to modern technology.

My summary statement on this subject;

"Insularity is not a consequence of technology it is a consequence of our mindset."

I like that.

12 comments:

Steve Sherlock said...

Great quote, Trevor. It's that mind thing again. If you put your mind to it, you can do anything (well almost anything within certain physical contraints)!

Rocky said...

Great stuff Amigo. I am back and ready to blog. I have missed the daily interaction. I have much to discuss and have experienced some ups and down in my attempts in the leadership world. Looking forward to more education and dialogue. YEEEEEHAH!

Trevor Gay said...

Thanks Steve - 'I think therefore I am' etc.,

Rocky - great to see you back Blogging my friend!

surfsidekick said...

Technology is our friend and foe. There lies a thin white line between them. It's all up to us.

aj

Trevor Gay said...

I agree AJ - it's whatever we want it to be :-)

Mark Foscoe said...

What about those who can't afford and/or don't have access to technology?

David Wike said...

Technology is fine but I have become a bit of a techno-phobe because:

1. Often it’s more complicated than it needs to be – for example, who wants a mobile phone with two cameras in it? (My son for one!)
2. The instructions are often incomprehensible to those of us whose mother tongue is English not techno-speak.
3. It doesn’t always do what you want it to e.g. Trevor sends me a couple of emails and each arrives 13 times! (But sending it to my business email address seems to have fixed the problem Trevor).
4. Sometimes it stops working at inconvenient moments. As Trevor knows, my wife is a radiographer. Just as half of the West Midlands descended on her department today, pretty much all of the technology stopped working at the same time! Result, one stressed wife this evening!

But as I am old enough to remember steam trains, black and white television, typewriters (and temperamental typists!) and the world before the Internet, even I would concede that technology does bring benefits!

Good luck with the house move this weekend Trevor, I hope everything goes smoothly.

Trevor Gay said...

Hi Mark

I guess the answer is that not everyone had access to or could afford mobile phones, or camcorders, or colour televisions. or cars or etc., etc., ..... when they first appeared – so TIME just maybe the answer to your question. We don’t live in an equal world. Not everyone is at the same ‘place’ in the technology race.

David

I agree with your sentiments in so many ways. I have never ever looked at any PC manual I have received with a PC. Somewhere there must be a mountain of these things untouched by humans hand 'cos I have never met anyone else who has ever read one either.

The house move is all geared up for tomorrow Saturday – and thanks for your kind words on that.

Mark Foscoe said...

Let's try a little experiment - a totally unscientific one, but never mind.

You use technology because - let's be honest - it's part of your job as a communicator. But what about your new neighbours? I hope I'm wrong but I wonder if you'll get as many new neighbours calling round to welcome you as you have people posting on this blog?

I've a feeling that technology enables us to communicate more easily with like-minded souls who live far away, while we increasingly shut ourselves away in our houses or actively seek isolation from the daily grind.

I also think that for some people, e-mailing and texting are actually replacing face-to-face interaction, rather than supplementing it.

Trevor Gay said...

Hi Mark - Yep I think you have a good point about the possibility that some people can shut themselves away and become too reliant on e mail and/or Blogging as their main communncation method. I have always said technology must be our slave and not our master and we must not replace human and social interaction. But we can at the same time use technology to its full potential whether that is in work or in our social/family life. I agree with you that technology is only a supplement to good and effective communication.

We all have choices about who we wish or need to communicate with. I still see plenty of people ‘in the flesh’ everyday in my work. I don’t think it actually matters whether we pro-actively communicate with immediate neighbours or not just as long as we are kind, polite, courteous and helpful to them. I believe I have always been that way and will continue to be so.

Interestingly enough 2 of our new neighbours did introduce themselves to us this evening and that was great.

Dmitry Linkov said...

It's friend when you personally know How it helps you. Otherwise it's just fun!

Trevor, I'm thinking of making a trip to England (London) closer to the winter. Maybe we will be able to see each other? ;)

Trevor Gay said...

Great Dmirty - let me know the date and we can arrange something!