Early computing pioneers recognized just how powerful technology could be, but few could have guessed where we’d be today. Although there are potential pitfalls to modern technology, we’ve benefited greatly from tech advances. Here are some of the way technology is making life better for people across the globe.
Communication and Information
Even through the early half of the 20th century, communication across long distances was expensive or slow. In fact, communicating across state or national lines was prohibitively expensive for most people even into the 21st century. Today, however, communicating across the globe through email or messaging services makes long-distance communication something most people take for granted, and online voice services can supplant the role of telephones in our daily lives. Gone are the days of waiting weeks for mail to arrive; we can speak to our friends, family and business contacts with a few taps or clicks. It’s also staggering to consider how much information is available online. Those interested in learning Spanish, for example, have countless resources available online. It can even help people learn a new job. Loading an Apache Spark tutorial, for example, can help tech employees transitioning to a career in data science.
Easier Financial Services
Going to the bank was a regular chore for most people until a short time ago. Today, people can often accomplish all of their financial needs while seated comfortably in front of a computer or smartphone. Furthermore, technology allows us to safely send money across the globe, and many people are paid through online services as well. Furthermore, many governments are looking to replace physical money with digital transactions. In addition to offering faster payments, being able to pay for anything without cash leads to better public safety.
In the early days of the internet, many people balked at the idea of buying products and services online. Today, however, online shopping now accounts for the majority of shopping in the United States, and this trend is only expected to continue over the coming years. Shopping online lets people compare prices more easily, and it’s far quicker than heading to a local store. Although some items, including groceries, are still most often bought in person, grocery delivery services are available today. There may come a time when people can feasibly do all of their shopping online.
Showing up to the office was often viewed as the only real way to get work done. However, the ubiquity of high-speed internet connections is challenging this belief. Many people spend nearly all of their working time in front of a computer, and many are able to work from home instead of dealing with lengthy commutes every day. This trend is convenient for employees, and it also lets employers spend less on office space and associated costs. Furthermore, video calls and other communication platforms let employees stay in touch without having to meet in person. Getting cars off the road leads to better public safety, and it’s also great for the environment. Technology is also improving transportation itself. GPS-enabled systems make it easier and safer to navigate to our destinations, and smart city technology makes transportation systems more efficient.
Technology becomes more ingrained in our lives in an incremental fashion, and it’s easy to lose track of just how much our lives have changed due to new tech developed over the years. Although there are some downsides to technology, it’s worth considering how technology has improved our real-world lives.