Computers were introduced with the aim of making work easier which was earlier being done by human beings. They were introduced to the society and influenced the lives of the people in different ways. Computers have personal, community, national, global and future impacts in the society (Ermann, 51). Personal impact involves privacy and security of data, job opportunities, ease of business transaction as a result of automation. To the community traffic control has been enhanced and urban planning. Computers have also made it easy for the process of law enforcement. Nationally computers have facilitated communication, the voting process, transfer of funds electronically, surveillance, defense and satellite broadcasting. Globally, businesses have thrived as a result of computers and governments have also been united to form a world government that controls all activities.
It has been prospected that in future, computers will replace all human energy through performing all the tasks. Computers are accurate and thus preferred more than human beings. Computer communications will also replace travelling as well as enhance learning. Information processing will also be promoted since homes will become working centers for many (Logsdon, 157). It is therefore clear that computers have to a large extent influenced the society in different ways. Although computers have negative impacts such as crimes like hacking, they have more benefits that overcome these limitations. As a result, they have been embraced and seem to take over all human activities in future. They benefit all people economically, socially and politically.
There is hardly anybody around who can say computers haven't influenced their lives. Computers have all but taken over society, as we know it. Everywhere you look, computers have greatly improved our lives in different ways. It can be as simple as going washing a car; a computer processes the information that we feed it and adjusts the machine accordingly to give us the certain wash we paid for. Computers also play an extremely complex role in one of the things that everybody uses in their everyday lives, which are our cars. "If there's one thing drivers should know when getting into a car, it's that everything seems simple, but beneath the covers it's incredibly complex." Just about everything in a new car is controlled by a computer, a computer will read and recognize your driving patterns and adjusts how and when the transmission should shift from gear-to-gear so that you, as the driver, will get maximum performance from your car (Ermann, 63). In some vehicles, a computer will adjust how high the car rides from the ground.
It is smart and advanced enough to lower the car at highway speeds to make it more aerodynamic, which will give you better gas mileage and makes the car easier to handle at these high speeds. The latest computer technology is an on-board navigational computer that will direct the driver into using the fastest and most efficient way to get to the destination (Logsdon, 187). It will plan your route around any construction, traffic jams, and even inclement weather. If and when these cars break down, a mechanic will simply ask the car's on-board computer what is wrong, rather than having to go through a series of complicated troubleshooting tests. As I have clearly stated, computers have greatly improved something that most of us use every day.
Another advantage of the computer that until recently I was unfamiliar with is the role of the computer in the workplace. I have worked at various jobs in my short existence on this earth. I have worked in different workplaces and most of them were labor oriented. The use of a computer therefore has been a change that I have experienced since many activities are performed through the use of computers at my current workplace. These days I wait tables at a local pizza restaurant here in Daly City called Blue Line Pizza (Ermann, 71). I have worked at restaurants like these before, but none of those places were dependent on a computer like this one is, we call it the POS system (point of sale). For example, at my old job, when we took orders for drinks we scribbled it down on a sheet of paper. This process seemed to take forever. Now all I have to do is go to the computer, and at the press of a few buttons, and the bartender gets a clear printout of what needs to be made. And with any luck, the drinks should be ready by the time I get to the bar. Point of sale systems simplifies the accounting process.
Old fashioned cash registers force accountants to sort through hundreds of receipts, but with a point of sale system financial personnel can simply use the built-in reports or create their own. Needless to say I like the method of using the computer much better than the old way of writing everything down. This has also solved a lot of problems of the same kind in the kitchen. As having the experience of being a Food Runner at one time, it was hard to read some handwritings which were done hurriedly. It was also hard for one to get the clear description of what was required. As you can probably imagine, this turns into a lose-lose situation for the people trying to work through all of this (Logsdon, 197). The cook is mad at the server for not being able to write the order in plain English. The server is mad at the cook for always being so critical and not worrying about themselves. Eventually the person who is affected most by all of this is the customer. What happens is the cook finally just doesn't care about the order anymore and doesn't prepare a good meal, or the server gets ticked off at the cook and ends up taking out their frustration on the customer who doesn't get the quality of service that they deserve. That is a whole bunch of problems that came out of just one tiny little detail, that being not writing the order clearly enough.
Before long there will be robots and computers waiting the tables, cooking the food, and mixing the drinks. Soon we might suggest that eventually only one person will be needed to run such a business, and that person is the one who supplies all of the capital and buys the equipment (Ermann, 78). Then the place would just run itself, while that person sits back and absorbs the benefits. However, so long as there are people in this world who are interested in getting the most value for their dollar, they would rather be at a place where they are treated like a person, by a person. For an alternative option, every time you want or need a service, you will become nothing more than a ticket number. The truth is nobody really wants to be a ticket number.
So as far as society being taken over by technology completely, I can't imagine that will ever happen. I believe that we as a society will use technology to every advantage possible, but it will always be used to our advantage and it will always improve the quality of our lives. We are powerful and intelligent enough to keep technology under our commands (Logsdon, 203). We need to be sure that we stick with our values and make sure that technology doesn't get out of hand. A lot of people disagree on what exactly is too much technology. In my opinion we can always keep adding technology to our everyday lives as long as the technology isn't manipulated to the point that we have to take advantage of and exploit other people in order to get ahead. I know it would be great if everything worked out that way, but as we all know we don't live in a perfect world and no matter what the scenario is, somebody's toes have to get stepped on if anybody wants to rise to the top.
Another problem I can see arising is people letting technology take over their lives and eventually they will be overcome by laziness. We have all Googled something that we were completely embarrassed we didn't know the answer to. According to Google, How to tie a tie gets over 500,000 searches a month. For some reason, over 1,000 people are searching how to boil water and how to boil eggs gets over 40,000 searches per month. It has gotten to the point where people have made Google their go to for many answers and this daily routine has made our society lack determination. A lot of people today are willing to spend huge sums of money on something that will make a task easier and effortless, whether or not it will do a quality and efficient job (Ermann, 83). As long as they don't have to use up too much energy, the consumer is happy they got the job done, never mind the fact it cost them hundreds of dollars to buy the equipment to get the job done "easier."
As far as computers in the workplace go, in my example of having computers put to use in a restaurant doesn't cause the workers to become lazy. It enables the business to operate more efficiently, and that is something that everybody looks forward to, including the owners, managers, employees, and most importantly the customers. The confidence of the employees where I work now is ten times greater than that of where I worked before (Logsdon, 211). Simply put, the environment that I get to work in is fun and easygoing. It may sound strange to give computers all of the credit but I believe that having computers in this setting have contributed to an all-around better business, which I am sure has shown up in the revenue generated by this particular business.
As much as I have admired the presence of computers in a restaurant setting there are a few setbacks, of which are greatly outnumbered by the positive aspects. The most prominent setback caused by these computers that I have seen is the training. As I said earlier every one of these computers is different, so even if you have had prior experience with computers in a similar setting, you will be basically starting from scratch when it comes time to learn a new computer. Personally I have been at my present job for about a four months and I am still learning how to use the computer (Ermann, 85). It seems like every day I learn something new on that thing and, at times, I think it has a personal war against me. About every month the system gets a new update or we discover a new button that the manager has not warned us about. But on the other hand, about 95% of the time it helps me to do my job better. It would be interesting to see how many complaints I would have if I had to write out everybody's orders and bills. With my handwriting, chances are I wouldn't have lasted a week in that place.
In today's society, the main issue of technology is ethics, people are afraid that technology can be corrupting, and with good reason. However, I think that people feel this way because they are the generation that has to adapt to this technology (Logsdon, 221). Tomorrow's generation will have a totally different attitude about the subject; they will be accustomed to technology in the workplace because it will have been there ever since they entered the job market. All in all, everybody will learn to use technology in each of their professions and it will make this world a better place to live.
Ermann, M D. Computers, Ethics, and Society. New York [u.a.: Oxford Univ. Press, 1997. Print.
Logsdon, Thomas S, and Fae Logsdon. The Computers in Our Society. Fullerton, Calif: Anaheim Pub. Co, 1976. Print.
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