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modern items in various ways, if we use them in a good manner, we will achieve a lot in our business.
What are the advantages and disadvantages of modern gadgets?
A gadget is a device or appliance having a unique purpose and function. At the time of invention, a gadget is often way ahead of its peers in terms of novelty and uniqueness. This is what makes them, so desirable and 'cool'!
The top ten gadgets that changed the world are debatable. Nevertheless, popular choices would be the television, telephone, camera, movie camera, microwave oven, video cassette player and recorder, video gaming consoles, Sony's Walkman, IBM's personal computer or PC and the first cell phone released in 1996, by Motorola. The latest gadgets include superior versions of DVDs, smart phones, camcorders, laptops, iPods, iPhones, the Blackberry, PCs, computer notebooks, pedometers etc.
That modern gadgets have changed the world, is a gross understatement. No one wants to go back to the days of no television, no washing machines and certainly, no cell phone. Hi-tech gadgets are proliferating by the dozen, as companies vie with each other to catch the eyes of gadget freaks or just time-pinched consumers.
Yet, rising from the din of MP3 players, DVD film premiers and podcasts is an ever increasing evidence, braced by scientific work, of the ill-health effects of modern gadgets.
The study done by Carnegie Mellon University found that spending one hour a week on the Net led to an average increase of 1 percent on depression scale, a loss of 2.7 members of the Net users social circle and increase of 0.4% on the loneliness scale.
Intel Apple computer along with Hawlett Packard has kick-started US 1.5 million US dollar- study on the effects of Internet on society. According to a spokesperson of the companies, 'People who use the Net lose more of their friends, are lonelier and more inclined to depression than non-Net users. Greater use of the Net is associated with a decline in size of the social circle, social contact and family communication'.
A brief outline of how these gadgets and their hazards to health are described below:
Electromagnetic fields (EMFs)
Almost all modern gadgets produce electromagnetic fields or EMFs, be they powered by electric, electronic or battery sources.
According to scientists, EMR (electromagnetic radiation) from EMFs, can be disruptive to the human body's own natural energy fields. Like x-rays, these waves are not blocked or weakened by objects in their way. They pass into our bodies upsetting normal cellular function and biological processes. EMR can cause headaches, tiredness and even immune system disorders. Scientists believe that appliances such as electric hair dryers, shavers and bedside digital alarms are more dangerous due to their proximity
to the human head.
According to the World Health Organization, 'electronic smog', created by electricity is 'one of the most common and fastest growing environmental influences'. New evidence has linked 'electropollution' with a rise in cancer, birth defects, fibromyalgia, Alzheimer's disease, Chronic Fatigue Syndrome, depression, learning disabilities and even Sudden Infant Death Syndrome.
Some persons like Kathleen Lucas, of Glasgow are so sensitive to electromagnetic fields that they are actually incapacitated by modern gadgets.
Lucas, 55, could not go anywhere near a microwave oven, cell phone, iPod, etc., without getting sick. Confined to her home for decades as a result of this, an EMF-shielding costume sold by an innovative company, Hitek, finally came to her rescue. The suit contained a silver thread, which helped conduct electricity away. For Lucas it was a lifeline from years of suffering with brain fog, digestive problems and extreme fatigue.
According to scientist and EMF expert, the late Dr. George Yao, the typical American is hit by electromagnetic radiation up to 200 million times more intense than what his ancestors absorbed from the sun, stars, and other natural sources.
Cell Phones- Can 'Fry Your Brains'
For those who believe in the perils of the mobile phone, the fact that graver side-effects like cancer take years to show up after exposure to cell phone radiation, is solely responsible for the free run of these
A recent study by Finnish scientists found a 40 percent increase in the risks of brain tumor for those who use these phones for more than 10 years. The brain tumor was most likely to be located on the side of the head where the phone was held. In addition, a Swedish study has found that brain cells could be destroyed by mobile phone radiation, which means that the present generation of teenagers run the risk of going senile before their middle-age!
In India and the US, clinical trials have raised the possibility that men who use mobile phones very frequently have reduced sperm counts.
Obviously there is also some media hype on some of these issues. However there is no question about the ill-effects of EMF and especially the radiation released by cell phones and their effects on the brain of children. The scientists are to some extent underplaying its ill-effects. At present most scientists are agreeable that children under eight should not be permitted to use mobile phones; a warning sidestepped by most lawmakers.
Stress at home, at work
Hi-tech gadgets created to supposedly reduce stress, often result in the opposite. Jarring ring tones, highdecibel tunes on iPods and headsets, as well as blaring music from the television's pricey sound systems account for noise pollution, which in turn cause headaches and hearing loss.
Like the ear, the eye too gets hit badly by modern gadgets. Hours of computer work, or computer play
such as games have created a boom time for optometrists and eye ware stores.
Slouching in front of the television or any screen for that matter, coupled with the continuous use of computer keyboards or phone keys for text messaging has brought about its own share of orthopedic problems.
All these problems result in bodies beginning to function less and less efficiently, in the process causing more stress.
Meanwhile, manufacturers are trying to create ergonomically better-designed gadgets which cause less health problems and which can accomplish more functions in a lesser time. Sadly, this ultimately backfires in the form of more workload per worker. More work translates into more sedentary lifestyle, less recreation and exercise and ultimately, more stress.
Modern gadgets come with many risks. As most are electrical or electronic, there are chances of electricity leaking causing minor shocks, burns and even electrocution. Faulty appliances can even set off electric fires. Toddlers with their inane curiosity are especially vulnerable to electric hazards.
Battery-operated devices such as mobiles phones can also be dangerous. A battery can overheat or explode resulting in third-degree burns or even start a fire. Nokia has recalled 46 million of the BL-5C batteries manufactured between December 2005 and November 2006 by the Matsushita Battery Industrial Co. Ltd for this very reason. They recorded approximately 100 incidents of over heating globally but
reported no serious injuries or property damage.
(For a list of phones with such recalls go to medindia blogs)
Modern gadgets can also compromise road safety. Hi-tech gadgets or gizmos like iPods, iPhones and cell phones etc come with multimedia facilities. This means that users can jive to their favorite tunes, watch movies or even browse the Internet all while answering a call or even, driving. Unfortunately the human body may not always be that efficient. This multitasking can translate into car accidents or even distracted pedestrians walking right into oncoming traffic.
Gadgets like the Internet-enabled PC, satellite TV and mobile phone have created a unified international audience. Though the benefits are many, technology has grabbed its pound of flesh too.
For one, it is now easier for anti-social elements and crime to spread its tentacles. Anti-social lyrics in popular songs, which spill out of ear phones and headsets can subtly bring about a rise in racial differences and hate-crimes. The young, impressionable mind can get influenced by the lyrics and this can lead to alteration in their outlook and lifestyle. The hard rock and metal music is often criticized for this very reason.
The television, Internet and gaming consoles can leave their addicts strapped to the screens for countless hours, creating a host of personal and social problems. One such is loss of communication in families. In addition to the wave of consumerism and materialism created by hi-tech gadgets, the obsessive desire to
possess these gadgets has boosted the incidents of thefts and crimes.
Hi-tech gadgets have come with the added burden of their disposal. Modern appliances such as PCs, laptops, mobile phones, fax machines, TVs etc., dumped into landfills are creating mountains of electronic waste or e-waste. Every year 2.2 million PCs, 3 million fax machines and over 6.5 million telephones, both fixed and mobile are discarded
Most of these devices contain lead, platinum and other heavy metals. They pollute the environment and create the increased risk to the health of all living organism as most of the pollutants creep into drinking water, crops and affect the food pyramid.
The search for safe and eco-friendly methods of e-waste disposal and recycling still remain one of the major challenge of the millennium.
Hazards to the Ecosystem
Humans are not the only victims of hi-tech gadgets, which modernization has let loose. One vivid example is the mysterious 'colony collapse' of honeybees rampant now in US and continental Europe.
According to concerned scientists, clinical trials with mobile phone handsets have proved their theory that the radiation given off by hi-tech gadgets and cell phones disrupt the navigation systems of the
honeybees. This would prevent the inhabitants of the hive from being able to return to it.
Now, what makes this ill effect of the modern gadget so scary is that bees are indispensable to the pollination of crops, and hence the production of food for human consumption. Albert Einstein once quoted "If the bees disappear, man would have only four years of life left'.
Modern gadgets have quietly taken away the 'spring in our steps.' For one we hardly need to step-out for any of our wants and a modern fully equipped apartment can do away with almost any chore mentionable.
As these gadgets lure us with more rest and less stress, we pay for it with lifestyle disorders such as obesity, diabetes, heart ailments, hypertension and infertility problems to name a few.
Are modern gadgets making us smarter?
SMS language promotes bad language; calculators numb our mental agility and we no longer remember telephone numbers the way we used to. Studies show that modern gadgets make us completely dependent on them. Is this a happy situation?
Calculators for simple tasks make us losefaith in our abilities If the brain is not exercised and used regularly, it is bound to become lethargic. The purpose of entrance tests is to stretch the capacity of students’ brains and sharpen them. The overuse and too much dependability on the hi-tech gadgets can limit our computational skills. The dependency is so much that
in the absence of these gadgets, we feel helpless and non-functional. Computational, visualising and memorising skills need to be used regularly. If this is done, our mind gets used to solving day-to-day problems, instead of waiting for a device for a solution. From our schooling days, we are trained to do simple tasks of multiplication, addition, subtraction and division mentally. If calculators are used for such simple tasks, we lose faith in our abilities. For higher level of algebraic, algorithm and geometric problems, a calculator is of no use.Nowadays, people cannot remember a single phone number and do simple calculations using a calculator. We should make use of brain teasers to exercise our brain and increase our aptitude. Maruti Shikare mathematics department head, UoP
Gadgets have improved our interpersonal communication The more challenges you give thebrain, the better it performs. Engaging the brain in challenging tasks will help you think faster, improve your concentration and attention spam. Modern gadgets may be making us dependent but we can’t stop marvelling at our brain’s capacity, which increases with better application. Using gadgets without using the brain repeatedly makes the function automated.Modern devices such as cellphones or the GPS are not totally useless. Playing games on cellphones sharpens our concentration and computational skills. If these devices are modified and used smartly, they serve their purpose. The GPS triggers three dimensional (3-D) thinking and sharpens designing skills. The biggest example of dependence is people not remembering phone numbers and depending on their cellphones for it. However, this is not an issue of concern because modern gadgets have brought us closer and improved our interpersonal communication. Chittaranjan Shirodkar area head (Pune), SIP Academy for Abacus and Brain Gym
We are dependent on the Internet for simple tasks Hi-tech solutions have crippled us from using our brain to find solutions. Today, we spend time and energy on how to make use of the technology. The technology, which was created to facilitate, has become a means in itself. We can take cues from the study by neuroscientists, who claim that GPS has led to humans losing their innate sense of direction. In our daily lives, we are dependent on the Internet to guide us on how to perform the simple tasks rather than thinking of the solutions on our own. There have been times when instead of thinking of a solution on my own, I have logged on to the Internet to suggest me what to do. This is not only time consuming but also reducing our capacity to think. Aanchal Sood, media professional
We become dependent because we want more comfort Modern gadgets will not stop our brains from functioning. There needs to be a balance between using the brain and the gadget. We seek comfort in whatever we do and so we become dependent on the modern technology. When there was only the radio, people would spend their time reading. Today, television, video games and the Internet occupy most of people’s time. One should exercise the brain by solving puzzles, Sudoku and crosswords. All this needs to be done on a regular basis, so that our mind doesn’t stop working. Physical exercise is also important with a balanced diet. Dr Hemant Chandorkar consulting psychiatrist
Gadgets are useful when they help you achieve more in less time The effective use of hi-tech devices depends on the situation in which they are used. These gadgets are useful when they help you speed up your work. If more can be achieved in less time, there is no harm in using them. The gadgets must not become so important in our life that dependency on them becomes
unavoidable. We must not give up our natural capacity of doing simple tasks of calculation and computation. Our educational system shouldencourage students to use their brains than depend on these hi-tech solutions. Due to urbanisation and commercialisation, gadgets such as cellphones are being rigorously marketed. They have penetrated into our lives so much that we are not aware about our dependency on them. They have become an important part of our life. An automation device is designed to make human task easyand to achieve more in less time, so that we can stretch our time to do other things. But, if we start applying it for our nominal tasks and become dependent on it, our natural skills are bound to get affected. Utkarsh Sidhpura, electronic engineering student
Small mental activities go a long way in enhancing memory The use of GPS and calculators improve efficiency and make life easier but it also deprives people of the opportunity of using their brain. Small daily mental activities such as making an effort to remember telephone numbers, appointment schedules, names, places and directions go a long way in sharpening and enhancing memory, attention and concentration skills. People’s tendency is to take least efforts to complete a task and technology comes to the aid in such situations.
Sensory motor development which is an important part of a child’s growth will be affected if children spend their time watching television and playing video games. The problem of dependence is compounding with children using cellphones and calculators. Children are in the developing stage and if their mental skills are not used to their full potential, they will never realise their aptitude. The use of mental abilities is important for adults because after the age of 35the decline of the cognitive skills begins. Avinash Bartakke, founder-director, Neural Space (brain training centre)
Modern Gadgets have made us slaves to machines
Modern gadgets have made us complete slaves to machines. There is no work which cannot be done without the assistance of machines and there is not a single area of human activity where machines don’t have to be used. No one can deny the fact that gadgets have not only simplified our lives but also made them more comfortable and luxurious. But on the contrary man’s dependence on them has increased so much that we just cannot do without them at all. If cabs go off the road we cannot reach our destinations. No cooking without LPG cylinder or cooking flame. No, we can’t do even simple calculations, what to talk of washing without washing machine or electricity. If electricity fails, life for each one of us comes to a standstill as all gadgets are operated with it be it AC, TV, computer, a telephone, or any other modern appliance. Perhaps there were times when every work was done with hands be it grinding or travelling far off places. People were tough who could walk for miles and work ceaselessly. In modern times we can’t ascend the stairs without feeling a burden over our stamina. Modern gadgets have completely transformed the human life and health to a great extent. It a fact that machines have become like servants without which life comes to a standstill.
Thus we can say that our dependence on modern gadgets has made us complete slaves to machines and that we have lost our spirit to work and vitality, vigor and stamina and therefore no more good health and cheerfulness and endurance prevails. This dependence on machines has transformed the very human psychology. We no longer have the capacity to hard work or bear pains or suffer inconveniences. This all has resulted in increased irritation, tensions, worries and anger. Consequently, human nature is now shortsighted in human values and aspects. Thus ‘slavery’ has made us pleasure-seeking ‘animals’ who care only for animal comforts. In other words we can say that over dependence on machines has made us
physically mentally lethargic and emotionally dead. If we want to relive ourselves and come out of this slavery we must resort to hard manual work and instill the spirit of strength and vitality in ourselves thereby we can be disease free and live a healthy lifestyle.
Modern Gadgets: Really A Boon For Us?
Brain-the biggest weapon, the mammoth power human has. Testimony of above statement is the present scenario. Just open the sea of imagination and imagine what old time was, now open your eyes and find yourself in this modern world. It is impossible to swallow this immense gap at one go, but if we take a look at how it all developed, we will not only believe it but will also get an idea what human brain can do.
Earlier life was tough, everything was done by hands but his brain made his life far better than what he used to live. Work of man is par excellence. God created us, gave us all the resources to grow, to feed ourselves and provided us with the power to think, to carve ideas and to take decision and human has proved to be the survival of the fittest. He carved his way out of every trouble. He had nothing to begin with but the nature around him. Today, we have everything we need to make our life more and more simpler. Yes, you are right; we are talking about Modern Gadgets. To begin with, let us take an example of our kitchen only. We have all the different kind of gadgets which do A to Z work of kitchen, just press a button and you are done.
For moving out or travelling, we have vehicles. We have all sorts of vehicles from a cycle to a luxury car. Now, when a person is done with breakfast made with all the modern kitchen appliances, he takes his vehicles, drives himself to his workplace. Even there, he has everything to relax and be comfortable to work. For his comfort, he has coolers, fans, air conditioners, heaters, blowers. He uses computers (even laptops), fax machine, printers and scanners to work.
The best ever inventions of human brain is internet. Internet has shortened the boundaries. We can get any information from internet. We can communicate with anyone via internet and telecommunication system.
Human has created satellites to get around the world. Earlier, we used to be unaware regarding what is going around the world but now the time has changed. It is human only who has made it possible which looked like utter impossible.
Today, we can get advance information regarding any natural calamity via weather reports using satellites. Man has even extended his limit to the space, even to moon about which we were just in the moon light earlier.
But one may not get enough time in this world of science to think that some how this simplification of life makes our life a bit complex. No doubt the facilities we have today have made our life a picnic but life is never a picnic in real sense. Everyone praises modern facilities but no one give him self a break to have a look at its consequences. These modern gadgets have made us torpid. We have become habitual or say addicted in more defined terms. Even our body does not permit us to do labor, we have become utter indolent and this adversely affects our health. Reason for a huge gross in number of heart patients, hyper tension cases is the same.
Now, talking about mobile phones, the waves/signals it generates is callous some for us. Excessive use can cause heart attack and even make a person impatient. Crime rate has increased due to increased connectivity. Even now days, mobiles are being used for terrorism.
Children, the nation builders get deviated from these mobile phones. Today, almost every student has a personal mobile phone and with all this their study suffers and hence they cut sorry figures to themselves, their parents and to nation.
Today, people use AC/blowers for a very large part of time of their day and it has resulted in weakening of immunity. They get frequently attacked by cold, they cannot step out in extreme weather conditions. In short, these modern facilities first become our needs and then taking in account the human nature, overuse of them is but obvious, so they take the form of some sort of addiction. One should use them but never indulge in overuse and let these needs become our addiction because science has proved to be a very good slave but will be a very bad master.
Top 10 Modern Gadgets that Changed our Lives
It is impossible to deny, that we are now well and truly in the digital age. Resistance is futile.
Ambitious, if slightly extraordinary concepts in films such as Tron, Blade Runner, Back to the Future and more recently I, Robot, gave us a ‘glimpse’ of what the future may hold, but how far away are we really from witnessing the ideas of these over-stimulated directors come to fruition?
Unfortunately, we are still some way off being able to pop to the shop on a Marty McFly Mattel hoverboard, but that is not for the want of trying. Many designs and prototypes have been made, but none have come close to reproducing the experience depicted in the film.
The idea of human-built robots uprising and attempting to overthrow their creators is nothing new, and the Japanese are currently leading the way in designing and building eerily life-like robots, but the threat of a rebellion is about as likely as a DeLorean actually traveling Back to the Future.
So what gadgets are readily available to us?
To first understand this, we must consider how they have come about. Consumerism and the modern way of living have demanded that our gadgets operate in a certain way, as the following are expected of them:
1. Information/Labour-saver – A gadget must either make menial tasks easier, or provide us with information. 2. Efficiency – Speaks for itself. 3. Speed – If it is going to take longer than doing it the old fashioned way, then what is the point?
4. Compactness/Mobility – No gadget can really honor that title if it does not at least have a mobile counterpart. 5. Look – It needs to look cool, futuristic, and mysterious!
10. Nintendo Gameboy Paved the way for the 3DS and PS Vitas of today, and made school bus journeys and rainy lunchtimes a pleasant experience after all. Nothing like it had really been seen before, and although the graphics were shady (pun intended) it was the first step of a revolution in mobile game-play. 9. iPod From early models to the the latest iPod Touch, Apple truly reinvented the way in which we listen to – and have instant access to – music. Gone are the days of having to carry a boombox like a bazooka on your shoulder, or a carry-case of your favorite CDs along with an un-pocket friendly walkman/CD player. The latest Touch boasts Face Time, HD Video Recording, Retina Display, Air Play, Music + iTunes, Games + Apps, iOS, iCloud, Air Print and Voice Control. 8. Webcam Perhaps not really taking off as an individual gadget in its own right, the birth of the webcam certainly influenced the way modern technology is built today. Very few laptops are now made without a built-in webcam, and the cameras on phones are utilized to allow video calling. It meant that computer software such as Skype allows meetings to be held over long distances, and friends and family can stay in touch in a more personal way than just being able to hear their voice. 7. GPS Satnavs and TomTom’s have more or less made the road map redundant, which is all you can ask from a modern gadget. Gone are the days of sitting on the side of the road whilst Dad spreads his A3 map on the car hood. They are fun too, with downloadable celebrity voices allowing the likes of Homer Simpson to frantically tell you which turn to take. 6. Samsung Galaxy Tab Considered as a better option to the iPad, and unlike its Apple counterpart, the 7 inch touch screen gadget supports flash as well as voice and video calls. Completely re-imagining the laptop, Tablets, Kindles and
the like are becoming more powerful and more compact with each new release, and the possibilities and use of them are all but endless. 5. Bluetooth A technology that almost snuck up on us like a highly trained ninja, bluetooth has now become so mainstream and synonymous with the 21st Century it is a wonder how we ever lived without it. The applications for it are endless, allowing us to wirelessly transmit data between phones, PCs, TVs, and even allow us to wirelessly use our phones whilst driving, meaning bluetooth can help avoid an unwanted run-in with the boys in blue. 4. Digital Camera Although it must be said that photos produced from a polaroid retain a certain charm, it certainly was not fun when you realized that the film was full, and a trip to go and get it developed was required. Now, you can take countless photos and not only view them instantly, but have them uploaded and printed within an instant, and the quality of picture keeps on improving. 3. Sky + HD / Tivo, etc All from the comfort of your armchair, the remote control allows you to tell your Sky + HD box to pause live TV if the double glazing salesman decides to pay a visit just as it looks like your football team is about to concede, then fast forward to real time so that you don’t have to witness it. It allows you to rewind, record other programs whilst you watch something else, record whole series, and view it all in spectacular High Definition. 2. 3D Digital TV We all remember a time when we would visit our nan, and she would still have an old black and white box telly. Well not anymore. Flat screen, digital, and now 3D TV is literally staring you square in the face. Already incorporated in most cinemas, 3D technology, whilst perhaps still in the early stages of development, is a very exciting prospect indeed. 1 Smartphones Android, iPhone and Smartphones have literally redefined the way we live. Now, a mobile does not simply make calls, take photos, and allow us to play Snake. They can talk to each other, to laptops, to TVs – to pretty much anything with a digital pulse. You can watch films on them, have instant access to YouTube and Facebook, play PROPER games, store ALL of your music, and more, and this is just the tip of the iceberg.
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