Sunday, November 2, 2014

The Power of No Power

Several weeks ago, the power went out at my house.  When I was younger, I remember it being this exciting thing; no power meant an adventure. Now? A burden, to say nonetheless. At first, it was just awkward, sitting in silence with my parents by candlelight, because we didn't know what else to do. That moment was followed by the realization that I wouldn't be able to charge my iPad or iPhone, and slight panic set in as I considered the fact that my phone might...die. The next morning I woke up to the power working in my house. Although I was relieved, it made me think- if I couldn't even last 5 hours with out technology, what would happen to an entire society without technology for a week?

This world we live in, based on human desire, revolves around the use of technology. We are "satisfying each impulse in the physical world with the ease and speed of digital tools... Hit a button and something happens in the world (that makes life easier for you)." Alexis Madrigal provides a good point- with the use of smart phones, we have access to pretty much everything we want in the palm of our hands. "With all the powerful social technologies at our fingertips, we are more connected- and potentially more disconnected- than ever before," says  Susan Tardanico, as she explains that 'on-hand' technology makes it easier for teenagers [specifically] to live in two different worlds. Taken from a nationally representative survey, out of 802 teenagers ranging from 12-17, 78% have cell phones, one in four teens have a tablet, and nine in ten teens have access to a laptop/computer at home. Those are three ways for teenagers to become wrapped up in a virtual world, where you don't necessarily have to be yourself, so much that teenagers today struggle having face-to-face interactions with people.

We have "broken the barriers of space and time, enabling us to interact 24/7 with people with more people than ever before." The fact of the matter is that is this honest communication? In our society we no longer require face-to-face communication, therefore will we even utilize human interaction 30 years from now? What would happen if the power went out then?

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