Is Our Society too Dependent on Computers?
Computers have found their way into just about every aspect of our lives, and in most cases, they make things easier for us. They allow people to work from home, socialize with friends and family, and they provide an ever-welcome stress relief from school or work. Since their invention, people far and wide have become increasingly dependent on computers. Children today are growing up in a world where computers are needed to do everything from controlling vicious heat seeking missiles to saving lives. The computers role in education is growing with increasing investments and technological innovation. The computer is a good thing, but the world must proceed with caution and a critical eye. As people increasingly rely on computers to get through the day, the question begs to be asked: is our society too dependent on computers? Despite the many benefits of computers, there are also a number of arguments against them, one of which is the negative effect some believe they are having on children's education. Illiteracy is a growing issue, and many say that computers are to blame. In the past few years, many teachers have taken to shuffling their students off to a computer to type out short, quick assignments that could easily be written out by hand. While this is not much of an issue for older students, it is an issue for the younger students who are just learning to read and write. Regardless of how much we are coming to rely on computers, printing and handwriting are a necessary skill to have. But typing out assignments has an effect on more than just the ability to print; it can also negatively impact their spelling and grammar. While most programs now have spelling and grammar-check, they are not foolproof; they cannot differentiate between groups of words that have the same spelling but different meanings and will often times suggest corrections that are not, in fact, correct. Furthermore, information is often more easily and accurately remembered when children have to spend a little time writing it out by hand, rather than a few quick minutes typing away at a keyboard. Because of these factors some believe, computers in school should be reserved for older students, longer assignments, or classes which specifically teach how to use a computer. Another case against computers arises when a person's interest in computers goes too far and becomes an obsession. Computers make it possible to do many things from the comfort of our own home; we can shop online, keep in touch with our friends online, even go to school online. They make it easier to record and organize information and entertain us with a nearly endless variety of games. However, it is still important to maintain a life outside of the cyber world. When a computer becomes the central point of a person's life, they undergo a change in behavior; they become idle and develop anti-social tendencies, and, in some severe cases, simply cannot function without a computer. It is a common thing seen in children who have been allowed to spend too much time on the computer, watching television, or playing video games but when it comes time to walk away, they throw temper tantrums. But it is not just a matter of behavioral changes, when a person cannot tear themselves away from the screen long enough to take part in any other activity, it can take a toll on their health. They may experience weight gain, strained eyes, and headaches, among other unpleasant side-effects. Computers can also have a negative effect on the environment. Firstly they are a major source of energy consumption. Whole buildings are full of desks running computers day and night, causing a major drain on our natural resources. New computers become outdated far too quickly. Manufacturers are developing hardware at such a vast rate that people feel the need to upgrade. After upgrading the old hardware is obsolete and is usually disposed of. There...
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