Fifty years ago, we could only dream of the technology most of us use on our smartphones every day. Computers and technology have infiltrated every area of our lives, and sometimes we find ourselves still scrambling to make room for them. Can our current technology really have any kind of impact on nutrition or analyzing the English language? Here are a few unexpected areas where technology is making an impressive impact, changing the way we interact with our world.
Programs intent on getting laptops and up-to-date computer labs in schools around the world aren’t uncommon. More and more schools are turning to technology-based programs, emphasizing techniques like self-teaching and research over traditional lectures and tests. In these environments, the teacher functions as a guide, helping students who need extra attention and allowing those who grasp the material to learn it very much on their own through computer activities and projects. While some complain that this method is too isolated and doesn’t help children learn valuable social skills, others advocate that it allows for more specialized instruction, making sure each student gets the academic instruction they need.
Having the newest and best tools has always played a heavy part in the military, whether those tools are gunpowder, stealth planes, or computers. Making computers that can function just as well in extreme environments as they do in a comfortable laboratory has been a challenge, but military technology continues to improve, allowing for high-quality, rugged military computers. These computers have many immediate and obvious benefits, among them more consistent communication, more effective organization, and even more creative strategizing.
The world of artistic expression has opened up almost startlingly wide with the availability of technology like smartphone cameras, computer-based DJ systems, and websites like YouTube that allow instant visibility. Where once you needed a manager of some sort to make yourself known as an artist, current technology now means anyone can create a website, start a blog, or upload a song and have it instantly available to anyone in the world. Internet-only celebrities are jumping into existence left and right, and many artists are choosing to fund independent projects on their own. This begs the question: What will recording and film studios look like in a few decades? As technology moves forward, they just might be left behind.
Besides the impressive medical advances made in the last century, technology has even made a difference in how the average person lives their life. While, on one hand, it may contribute to a much more sedentary lifestyle, there are also aspects of it that encourage positive health choices, such as movement-based video games, online calorie counters, and heart rate monitors that track exercise progress. Technology continues to offer people more agency over their own health, allowing them to monitor their own health without referring to a specialist.
There truly is no area of life where technology has not at least tried to make improvements, even if it is not always successful. Fifty years from now, we may abandon some of this technology to return to a less complicated time, or perhaps our tech will be even more intertwined with our everyday lives. There is really no way to tell. We can only watch and see as time and technology both march on.