The Perils of Technological Development
Eddie Naylor Sr. is a well-informed author who has written a self-help book that is anchored to the evident dangers of technological advancements today. These advancements, albeit good for some reasons, bring about challenging, frustrating, risky, and stressful new problems that are harmful to the physical and psychological health of the public. Arguably, technology has become so advanced for the past decades that its effects have become uncontrollable to a large extent as well.
Now, what do we exactly mean when we say ‘technology’? By definition, technology is the practical application of scientific knowledge, especially in the field of industry. The term is often interchanged with the word ‘innovation’. Innovation, of course, is a good thing. It entails progress – the transformation of the society from backwardness and discomfort to modernity and convenience.
Indeed, life has become so much more convenient with the development of technology. In almost every aspect like communication, education, and transportation, technology has served as an impetus for a much easier and quicker-paced day-to-day life. However, these changes are not without negative implications. As mentioned, technological advancements are currently resulting to numerous effects that have become quite uncontrollable and even irreversible for humans to handle. To demonstrate some of these effects, the rest of this article is dedicated to discussing the perils of technological development that every human being must be aware of.
Implications on the Workforce
The most fundamental impact of technology on our day-to-day life is economic in nature. Many technological advancements in the past decades have been dedicated to enhancing the productivity of businesses in various industries. This then has paved the way for the creation of machines and devices that undertake the tasks that were once carried out by humans. The result: there seems to be a replacement process that is happening within the workforce. Machineries seem to be replacing humans as the primary source of labor power.
The competition between machinery and human labor is not a new thing, of course. It has already existed ever since the Industrial Revolution when heavy machines began taking over the physical jobs previously held by men. However, as technology continuously progresses, the competition between men and machines is no longer just existing in the realm of physical task; it has also already penetrated into the domain of mental work. With the coming of microchips and computers, more and more jobs that once required the mental capabilities of humans are now becoming pointless and unnecessary. The inception of Artificial Intelligence (AI), particularly, produced great fear among the workforce. It has constantly sparked a heated debate among intellectuals and common people on whether or not robots are finally taking over jobs, thus, leaving humans with no purpose to serve in the world.
Implications on the Military
The negative implications of technology on the military is quite straightforward – it has led to the creation of heavily destructive weaponry that can bring enormous destruction and obliteration to the world. Weapons of Mass Destruction (WMD) like atomic bombs, particularly, are a product of science and technology. These weapons are extremely harmful and violent in that it can wipe out a large population in a matter of seconds. An example of this is the atomic bombings of Japan in 1945. In these devastating events, two nuclear weapons were detonated over the Japanese cities of Hiroshima and Nagasaki, where between 129,000 and 225,000 people were killed in just a few moments.
Despite the harrowing impacts of WMDs, however, the world does not yet seem to have learned anything from the experience of Japan. Today, many countries still develop nuclear technology. The proliferation of nuclear warheads continues across the globe. For several times, humanity has been on the brink of a nuclear warfare (e.g. during the Cold War) that would surely annihilate not just the human species, but all the living organisms in the world.
Implications on the Environment
Environmental degradation is another growing concern that is often tied with technological development. The increased production in the manufacturing and processing industries, the uncontrolled testing of weapons, and the high usage of automobiles are the main culprits that greatly damage the environment. These technological processes have been resulting to negative environmental outcomes for years now.
Technology, particularly, has three major negative impacts on the environment. First, it facilitates environmental pollution resulting from waste output. Huge industries, specifically, are unapologetically polluting the air and water by carelessly disposing their harmful wastes into rivers and water systems. Their emission of large quantity of gases such as carbon dioxide in the air then has been causing air pollution that contributes to the second major negative impact of technology on the environment: global warming. Global warming basically is the long-term rise in the Earth’s average temperature. It is a major aspect of climate change that is resulting to devastating catastrophes like flooding and wildfires. Lastly, ecological imbalances and the depletion of natural resources are also a consequence of the uncontrolled development and use of technology at the expense of the environment.
Implications on Humanity
One of the perils of technological development has something to do with humans and their freedom. Technological inventions are increasingly infiltrating the society. Computers, particularly, have brought numerous developments not just in the workplace, but also in education and communication. Today, learning has become quite easier with technology. Students no longer need to go to libraries in order to look for information. They can just simply connect to the internet and information will be readily handed over to them in just a few clicks. In other words, education and learning have become more accessible because of the developments in technology.
The same thing can be said in the realm of communication. People can now communicate with one another in a matter of seconds, without much hassle. They no longer need to get out of their houses just to talk to one another. Text messaging and social media have made it possible for people to communicate without the need for personal interaction.
These developments, of course, may seem positive at first glance. However, the social implications of too much technology are not all positive in reality. Looking at the bigger picture, these technological advancements are breeding a new generation of humans who are too dependent on computers and other devices. This, in turn, has the capability to narrow the sphere of freedom that humans have in the future. In other words, the unrestrained progress in technology is seemingly leading towards the destruction and imprisonment of humanity at its core.
All in all, the advancement of technology has undoubtedly made life easier and more comfortable than it was a few centuries ago – communication has become quicker; education has become more accessible; transportation has become more convenient, and so on. However, this modern life of ease and luxuries did not come without a price. Along with its benefits, the development of technology is also bringing with it some negative outcomes that challenge the very survival of humanity.
Arguably, the world is already an entering a new era – an era wherein the possibility of a technological takeover looms large. As Eddie Naylor Sr. has argued, the problems posed by the uncontrolled advancements of technology are only waiting to “blow our minds apart.” With this, it is perhaps high time that we, humans, begin to re-evaluate our dependence on technology. Technology and innovation are a good thing. But just like anything else in general, too much, if left aimless and unbridled, is dangerous.