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Communications of the ACM


Living in a Digital World

smartphone user

Credit: Billy Quach

Technology has created new opportunities to connect and interact. Yet, researchers are increasingly concerned that heavy technology usage is changing people's behavior in less than desirable ways.

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Charles Tolman

At last I am glad to see a more balanced reportage of technology use in CACM.

Having been a coder since the late 70s and a member of ACM since 1986 I have certainly noticed the effect of extended contact with technology on my personal relationships.

Although this article is mainly about users I believe the vast majority of computer professionals are blissfully unaware of the effect of the "day job" on their psyche.

It will be good if we can now have a more balanced view about both the benefits and pitfalls of our beloved gadgetry. Our (sometimes difficult) relationships with people matter more than our (too easy) relationships with gadgets.

Also - and I know I will be lambasted for this - I am convinced young children should be kept away from the stuff. Most of the world seems to disagree - or is it only those with vested interests?


Okay, so what?

Those who will mass produce their technology will not stop mass producing it, will they?

Don't worry Samuel, you should not be worried about how people should live in digital world... People will never change their habits for the shake of just changing their habit.

They want to immerse into the technology so much so that nothing else can stop them. Nobody is going to listen what social scientist has to offer... Who will want to live offline life when everybody is chatting around and poking around in the FB, who wants to walk in the "empty streets" anyways, who cares about that nowadays...

Yes, in high tech world, people will have implications of using the technology .. it is just like mass producing guns and bullets and distributing it among people and later making headlines that "someone got killed, someone mass murdered somebody, ...etc...etc.."

Those who created Internet in the first place they did not do it for the commoners, they did for national benefit...but look that now that national benefit is turning them into nuts...everyday... I can go on and on but let me stop here... good luck.

Santosh Kalwar

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