As an experiment, the class was tasked to veer away from using gadgets (cellphones, computers, etc) and the internet (social media, games, etc.) in order to discover what life is like in the 21st century without contact with technology.
Initially, upon being given the assignment, we had different reactions. Living in a life where 24/7 we have contact with these gadgets seemed untimely. For 2 days we had to do the task, I was up for it though I worried about certain issues.
On Friday, the beginning of the experiment, I found it difficult to do the assignment because I was given assignments by our head in the Student Affairs to submit documents that I had to do on the computer. Aside from that, we had a general assembly for The Tripod Society. Although I was worried about the assignment, what I did, I just finished the urgent documents and only reply to messages/emails that needed immediate response. Conversely, for our general assembly, we decided to do the old fashioned white board and marker type of meeting and proceeded with the issues at hand.
On Saturday, I had the similar dilemma, I had to cover an even in DLSU-Taft for Green Media Group (GMG). I had to use my camera from 7AM-3PM to cover the entire event. Like the previous day, I would only respond to calls and messages which needed immediate response. But after the event, I didn’t use any gadget but rather just watched TV with my mom.
The whole experiment wasn’t new to me. Every time we go for vacation to Baguio every summer, our parents ban us from bringing any gadget, game console, and/or music player as these will divert us from having family time. We’ve been conditioned to do this since we were kids and we got to do more activities (like Mini-golf, shopping, sightseeing, etc.) when we had that agreement with them. My sister teases me of being old-fashioned and an old soul because she tells me that I was born at the wrong era. She does this because I always bring with me a small notebook and pen–for note taking, doodling, or computations; I’ve always been acquainted with my pen and paper. Aside from this, I don’t really get to use my gadgets until I’m done with chores.
Decades ago, people were able to live with out these gadgets and they were able to do without them in their lives. It made me realize why many people starting from my generation are so worried and insecure about not having gadgets in their hands. That’s because we grew up in a world where technology has already broken the sphere of discovery in compared to our parents’ and grandparents’ generation, technology was only at the beginning of its prime.
Honestly, I tried my best to do the assignment but there will always be external forces brought about by circumstance or other people that will try to challenge you to fulfill the task. I had trouble because of the things I had to do but as much as possible I did try to minimize, if not fully devoid myself from using gadgets. In the world where we live now, it is quite challenging to do because we’ve already integrated the use of technology to different aspects in our life. The use of technology also is dictated greatly by the lifestyle of the family and the environment. In our home, we’ve made sure that computer time is separate from family bonding time and study time. But over the course of time, these invisible boarders are being shifted.
Would I decide that living life without gadgets or technology at that, is impossible? No, it’s not impossible. There are still people who choose not to use gadgets. However, it is not ideal anymore to live without these since we have already integrated technology in our life. This is where the future is directed. We can choose to use technology or we can opt not to. It’s still a matter of choice, but the circumstances would be entirely different.
In conclusion, it is in the orientation that we were conditioned that make us feel like we have lost touch with reality because of the gadgets. It is not their [gadgets/technology] fault, rather it is we, humans, who decide to let them take control of our lives and that should not be the case. We are to utilize these gadgets so that, like what was said in an earlier discussion in class, to make work efficient and less cumbersome. In the end, it is in us to decide if we would let it control and manipulate our social norms, values and morals as human beings.