By Sophie McNaughton
Technology has changed almost every aspect of daily life. We live on our phones and obsess over social media, kids play video games rather than playing outside, and iMessage has significantly inhibited the long lost art of writing. Here’s how technology has changed our generation:
How we date
Back when our parents met, it was typically in a traditional setting like school, work or a movie ‘meet-cute’, like when the woman spills milk in a supermarket and her hand accidentally touches another as her and her soulmate both reach to pick up the same carton and their eyes meet. How cute!
Our generation will most likely be telling our kids that “Mummy and Daddy met on Tinder”. Long gone are the Ross and Rachel romance stories of the ‘90s. Sadly, technology has revolutionised dating, which means hardly anyone has the courage to ask someone out to their face anymore and instead, many take the easy route of adding their crush on Facebook and making virtual advances through text. Instead of hiding behind screens, let’s go outside into the real world and actually talk to people!
Remember this bad boy? Well I didn’t have one as cool as this but most of us will have had a dull variation of the bog standard house phone during the ‘90s. Back in the good old days, this was the equivalent of the modern iPhone, except that it could only be used for one thing – to actually make phone calls. They have long died out now, but at least we can look back with fond nostalgia at the times where we would twiddle the long, curly cable between our fingers and walk around in the room until being pulled back by tangled mass of wires.
The majority of us have one – the iPhone. The modern smart phone can do pretty much everything. Like seriously, name something it can’t do? If you look around you on public transport, you’ll see a good majority of commuters glued to their phones or e-readers, rather than that real life paper thing called a book. I’m not sure if smart phones are necessarily good for us, but I would be a hypocrite if I told you to abandon them because I’m checking my own for notifications right now.
Cassette tapes! The glorious tapes are sadly a thing of the past, unless of course you’re like me and have an old car that still has a tape deck and you have to buy the little obsolete gems from eBay #winning.
Even CDs are outdated and we have converted to digital music from online stores like iTunes. While the quality of the music we buy is still to a high standard, we typically don’t have hard copies of our music anymore so God forbid your laptop crashes because you’ll lose everything! There’s merit to both mediums but does making someone a Spotify playlist really hold the same sentiment as a personalised mixtape?
Back in the days before the glorious invention of the internet, I can only imagine how much harder studying must have been. Students must have had to, y’know, actually read books and go to the library to research for their coursework. And there were no laptops to type up your essays, everything had to be done with the good ol’ pencil and paper and if you made a mistake, it was a nightmare to erase or Tipp-Ex.
I’m very glad to have the internet when it comes to doing assignments – pretty much because Spark Notes and Wikipedia are life savers! Everything can be accessed quicker and more easily, and for that I will be eternally grateful. And, of course, there is plenty on the World Wide Web to amuse you when it’s time to procrastinate.
Technology has definitely changed our lives. Whether that’s a good thing or not, I’m still unsure. But at least we still have retro, vintage charity shops that we can saunter into to buy the beloved items from our past like cassette tapes, old style telephones, typewriters, record players, Polaroid cameras and every obsolete product in between.