5 Jun 2014
Technology, is it helping or hurting our evolution?
There are so many popular science fiction movies and television shows over the past twenty years that have shown technologies that we once thought unachievable. We were wrong. Technology has advanced so fast that we have science fiction in our everyday lives. Our children are born with such tech abilities it truly is astounding. The wonderful things we now use do have a price. Jane McGonical and Sherry Turkle were presenters at the Technology, Entertainment, and Design (TED) conference. The two presentations were separated by two years but each touch on how technology is or could impact our lives. While Jane McGonigal reports that we will be better off if we play more games online, Sherry Turkle states being always connected will have adverse effect on social interaction.
The presentations start out praising the technology and the advances that have been made. Jane McGonigal parallels current geo-political, economic and social issues with historical evidence from ancient Greek historian Herodotus. Herodotus says that games, particular dice games, were invented in the kingdom of Lydia during a time of famine. The leaders of Lydia used dice games to distract the people from the extreme situation and suffering. The games were used kingdom-wide every other day. One day the people would eat and the next they would play dice games. This tactic lasted for 18 years. McGonical states that in the modern world we are using games to escape real-world suffering. According to McGonigal we can take online game play as a catalyst for solving real world issues. Jane refers to Malcolm Gladwell’s 10,000 hour theory of success that if a person devoted 10,000 hours of effortful study on a subject they will become a virtuoso in that subject. She points out an interesting fact of by age 21 some gamers have spent 10,000 hours playing online games. This is the same amount of time spent...