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Martinez 1 Valentina Martinez CO150 Kristen Foster 22 November 2013 Technology in Our Everyday Lives The boom of technological

advances was introduced in our society almost a decade ago. Some surprising innovations are illustrated in the article The Top 10 Innovations of the Decade, published on the ABC News website. By the year 2000 AT&T was the first institution that introduced instant text messaging for portable devices. In 2004, the social networking site known as Facebook was introduced by a Harvard University student called Mark Zuckerberg. In 2005, the video-sharing website named YouTube was launched. Google searching website turned public in 2004 and smartphones from Apple Inc. were introduced by 2007. These and more advances have surprised society because they have brought comfort and convenience into peoples lives. Nowadays, it is possible to imply that young generations have grown up with technology around them, which has made them develop certain reliance on it. For example, students are currently asked to utilize technologies to work on their assignments or even communicate with their classmates and professors. A national survey undertaken by the Pew Research Center of Berkman at Harvard University, shows that by the year 2011 78% youths had a cell phone and 47% of them were smartphones. The constant usage that students give to technological devices increases as time passes by. A good example of this situation is illustrated in a smartphone user survey undertaken by the Test Kitchen Research Report of the University of Colorado Boulder. It states that students use their smartphones on a regular basis, in which 93% use them when taking public transportation; 92% use them during free time at work or school; and 77% use them as soon as they wake up in the morning, and 72% before they go to sleep.

Martinez 2 The continuous usage of technological devices is notorious; however the negative outcomes that the over-usage of technology could cause in students arent evident. Therefore, it could be implied that students should diminish the usage of technological devices and digital media because their constant usages cause continuous distractions that lower the productivity and efficiency of the brain and damage offline relationships. Technological devices and digital media cause constant distractions while conducting a specific activity. Those distractions lower the productivity and efficiency of the brain. The usage of technological devices has become a significant part of the daily activities of a student. Cellphones, iPods and laptops are generally utilized to access the internet, to have social interactions through the usage of digital media, and to play games. However, the constant usage of those devices have developed a dependency on technology in which students are trying to get their home-works done while texting their friends, taking pictures of themselves, and listen to music. The truth is that those distractions are cutting the productivity of students, because they arent totally focusing on a single activity. Hence, they arent making a good usage of their time, so their activities are not being fully developed. An example of these assumptions was provided within the article Brain, Interrupted written by Hugh Thompson and Bob Sullivan, published in the New York Times. In this article, an experiment conducted by the professor Alessandro Acquisti was illustrated. During the experiment, the performance on a test taken by 136 people was analyzed. The amount of people was divided into three different groups; all of them were told they might be interrupted during the exam, though one of the groups was never interrupted. In the first round, two of the groups were interrupted and in the second one only one group was disturbed. When the experiment concluded it was possible to say that the interrupted groups had 20 percent less accuracy in their performance in comparison to the group that was never

Martinez 3 interrupted. Accordingly, it is possible to imply that a 20 percent lack of accuracy in a students performance is enough to turn a B-minus student (80 percent) into a failure (62 percent), meaning that the interruptions caused by technology can lead downhill the academic progress of a student. Moreover, within the article Technology and the Interrupted Brain Pat Galagan introduces the negative effects that technology is causing in the humans ability to learn. The writer of this article cites various intellectual authors to support the statement that says that the constant usage of technology is developing a habit that could end up impeding real learning. One of them is Nicholas Carr, author of the book The Shallows: What the Internet is doing to Our Brains. Carr recognizes technological devices as distractors that provide internet access from various locations. These items bring constant distractions that fill up the short-term memory of the human brain with unnecessary data, which forces out the information that the brain should be transporting to the long-term memory. He also considers essential for the human being to Focus on one thing at a time (Galagan, 23) which is a task that technological devices make hard to accomplish. Students who are surrounded by technological implements might be experiencing the inconvenience of not easily remembering the data that is provided in each of their classes. This happens because the constant technological interruptions are stopping the information from transferring to their long-term memories. The intellectual Daniel Goleman agreed with the idea by stating that The ability to pay attention is absolutely critical to success in life. Additionally, the internet is considered as a helpful tool to a certain extent. Galagan specifies that overreliance on the internet can impede real knowledge creation. (Galagan, 23) He backs up this idea by stating that knowing actual facts is more important than simply knowing how to find them online, according to a cognitive science research.

Martinez 4 Some critics claim that the internet enhances humans intelligence because it is a convenient tool to find information from various locations and at any time. Tomas ChamorroPrezumic is a business psychology professor at the university College London. He wrote the article Is Technology Making us Stupid (and Smarter)? The data within the article claims that nowadays is relevant to develop the ability to access to information; which is a skill that the internet helps to improve. Chamorro-Prezumic states that intelligence is based on the cooperation between the ability to gather information and the capacity to store it. However, the constant interruptions caused by technological devices are constraining the human brain from transferring data to the long-term memory. It also damages the capability of the brain to store information, turning backwards the assumption given by Chamorro-Prezumic. Furthermore, it may be true that the internet and technological devices are helpful tools for students to access to new data. But the knowledge that resides in the long-term memory and the ability to store more information is necessary to improve intelligence. Annie Murphy Paul, author of The Brilliant Report supports this idea by saying that digital literacy skills cant be separated from the knowledge that gives rise to them. Meaning that both the ability to access and store information are relevant for successful students. The constant usage of technological devices and digital media should be diminished because in that way good offline social relationships can be improved. Social relationships are considered as the interaction between two or more individuals. The quality and quantity of those interactions are able to affect the mental and physical health of people (Umberson, Montez 55). Moreover, it is possible to imply that the constant usage of technological devices distracts individuals from being in the present physical moment. Hence it distances offline interactions between people because they are now trying to keep up with their online relationships. Good

Martinez 5 examples of these situations are provided within the article Disruptions: More Connected, yet More Alone written by Nick Bilton. The author cites within the article the video I forgot my Phone played by the actress Charlene deGuzman. During the three minute clip, the actress encounters different social interactions; such as, waking up in the morning with her boyfriend, having lunch with some friends, celebrating a birthday party and going bowling. During all of those different settings her friends and boyfriend ignored her as they were excessively utilizing their phones. The actress eventually states, It makes me sad that there are moments in our lives where were not present because were looking at a phone. Accordingly, the constant usage of technological devices is weakening real life social relationships and bringing friends apart. The excessive usage of technological devices and digital media not only distances people from the present individuals around them, but they can also lead to the development of multifaceted personalities that could also damage offline social interactions. Katie Davis is a subordinate lecturer at the University of Washington Information School; she shows the influence of new technologies in the development of self-identity of teenagers within the article Tensions of Identity in a Networked Era: Young Peoples Perspectives on the Risks and Rewards of Online Self-Expression." She argues that new technologies provide various possibilities of self-expression, though those possibilities arent always well developed by youths. Teens are in a period of their lives when their identity development is fundamental. Therefore, they have the easiness to get lost in the way of constructing their personalities. Davis states that teens tend to develop multi-faceted personalities within different online frameworks, which ends up damaging their offline relationships. This statement could also be supported by the documentary Growing up Online, which illustrates real life examples of teenagers attitudes within online vs. offline settings. One of the

Martinez 6 examples provided is about a 14 year old girl named Jessica Hunter. She was known as an introverted youth who only had a few friends and was a little bullied in school. When she found out about the various possibilities of self-expression within the internet and specifically in the online world of digital media, she decided to create a new identity of herself. Consequently, she created a Myspace account where she named herself as Autumn Edows. She was known as a gothic provocative model within her online world. She testifies saying that she felt different but good because she had gotten the attention of many people. When her parents, teachers, and offline peers found out about her secret identity, her fake online world was destroyed. Her parents were disappointed, her teachers shocked, and her classmates were despising her even more than before. Hence, her offline social relationships were damaged because of the continuous usage of technological devices and digital media that led her to the creation of multifaceted identities. Likewise, the bad usage of technological devices and digital media could eventually damage offline relationships. It is argued that digital media is a beneficial tool for long distance relationships. The article Social Media Explosion implies that online settings let people feel more comfortable sharing their personal information. However, the data within the article seems to be contradictory because it eventually accepts that the confidence shown in online settings is not always taken to the offline interactions. Hence face-to-face dialogues are becoming difficult to manage. Accordingly, it is possible to state that digital media and technology are innovative tools that are helpful to a limit; whenever the limit is passed negative outcomes could occur. The usage that students have given to technological devices and digital media has evidently increased within a short period of time. Technology easily became a significant, even necessary part of their lives. Therefore, it is critical for students to be aware of the negative

Martinez 7 outcomes that the excessive usage of technological tools can promote. To avoid damaging offline relationships and a lack of productivity and efficiency of the brain, constant distractions should be evaded. Therefore, students should simply make a good usage of their time and diminish the usage of technological devices and digital media.

Martinez 8 Works Cited Chamorro-Premuzic, Tomas. Is Technology Making us Stupid (and Smarter)? Psychology Today. Sussex Publisher. 7 May 2013. Web. 19 October 2013. Clemmitt, Marcia. "Social Media Explosion." CQ Researcher. 25 Jan. 2013. Web. 25 Oct. 2013. Davis, Katie. "Tensions of Identity in a Networked Era: Young Peoples Perspectives on the Risks and Rewards of Online Self-Expression." New Media & Society 14.4 (2012): 634651. Academic Search Premier. Web. 13 Oct. 2013. Dean, Jenny. Smartphone User Survey: A glimpse into the Mobile Lives of College Students. Digital News Test Kitchen. N.d. Web. 14 Nov. 2013. Galagan, Pat. "Technology and the Interrupted Brain." T+D 67.9 (2013): 22-25. Academic Search Premier. Web. 24 Oct. 2013. Growing up Online. Frontline. Pbs. WGBH, Boston. 22 January 2008. Digital File. Heussner, Ki. The Top 10 Innovations of the Decade. ABC News. Dec, 2009. Web. 14 Nov. 2013. Sullivan, Bob. Thompson, Hugh. Brain, Interrupted. The New York Times. 3 May 2013. Web. 19 Oct. 2013. Tomas Chamorro-Premuzic, Ph.D. Psychology Today. Sussex Publisher LLC, n.d. Web. 19 Oct. 2013. Umberson, Debra. Montez, Jennifer. Social Relationships and Health: A Flashpoint for Health Policy. Journal of Health and Social Behavior 51.1(2010): 55-66. Web. 16 Nov. 2013.