With the pandemic kicking the world in the guts, technology has reshaped the way humans interact, work, or even survive. According to Pew Research, the world is yet to encounter many similar impacts in the future emerging from the COVID-19 outbreak. The dire times have already stumbled the global economy, bludgeoning the lives of the commoners and the giant players in the global business.
The public’s relationship with technology is projected to grow deeper in the next decade, whether in education or healthcare. But at what expense?
Here is a look at different and wider perspectives on the unprecedented challenges humans will likely face in the technology-driven world. The study delves into the potential scope and impacts of technology on the educational and healthcare systems.
What do you mean by Technology Driven?
The term technology-driven can be defined as a philosophy that pushes and advocates for the development of new products or services based on technical abilities instead of market demand. Meaning, it is a phenomenon that prefers technological advancement to convenience.
Today, the term technology-driven can be used to describe not only business but even our mindsets, society, innovation, and even economics. We live in a world that wants to see newer and greater technological breakthroughs. It thrives on exploring the potential of available technology. Because today, technology means development.
Technology Driven World: Present and Future
The wearable-tech revolution is already around the corner, but more eyes are keen on how AI and Virtual reality will impact the world in day-to-day living.
Even more exciting is that the technology is not stopping us from getting smarter, smaller, and more affordable. Smartwatches, fitness trackers, and Bluetooth headsets have taken consumer electronics by storm, and the world can only expect these numbers to grow exponentially.
However, not all of these tend to receive such a warm welcome from consumers. Gadgets like mobile phones and tablets tend to get us excited when they come out every year. However, after a while, we become less interested, and our attention moves elsewhere.
But this is not always the case. What we see in most Hollywood movies and read about in books is the idea that these devices will be part of our lives. We also realize they will play an important role in making our lives more productive, easier, and even entertaining.
What we probably haven’t yet realized is that this is already happening. After all:
- Most people who own smartphones can’t go one day without checking their Twitter feed or Facebook notifications.
- Tablets, which make surfing online a breeze, are becoming increasingly popular.
Smartphones, VR, and Artificial Intelligence
All the aforementioned leads us to believe that people will be interacting with each other many years from now through wearable devices. This would make it more difficult for them to relate with one another in person. After all, they are always distracted by whatever is happening on their headsets.
What’s even scarier is the fact that these ‘distractions’ are becoming pervasive in children’s lives as smartphones and tablets become smaller, cheaper, and more accessible. As a result, what used to be computer programmers’ domain driving technological advances has become an integral part of our consumer culture.
Will virtual reality create two worlds? One physical where you can escape and another where you can be who you want to be? What about the Internet of Things? What impacts will technology have on our environment and society in the future? These are only a few questions we should find an answer to.
We know for sure that technology will continue to develop rapidly—there’s no way it’ll slow down. We should learn from this development how humans choose to use it: whether they chose wisely or abused their power over it and used it to control other people. It’s up to us humans: if we like something, we embrace it; if we don’t, we ignore it until, eventually, it disappears. What kind of world do you see yourself living in 5-10 years from now? What role would you want technology to play in this world?
Educational Breakthroughs and Upcoming Challenges
One of the most challenging areas where technology has been applied in health care. Technology has brought us many positive changes in this area, including personalized medicine and gene therapy. Still, it also poses some very important questions.
For example, what does it mean when a machine can diagnose a disease? How will doctor jobs change once they start using robots? Will automation allow people from developing countries to access healthcare facilities they couldn’t afford before?
Today these questions have no answers, but you should think about them because by making assumptions instead of facts, you risk making the wrong decisions. Technology has also impacted education, particularly in the post-pandemic era. How children learn and communicate with their teachers or peers changed.
Technology has become an integral part of children’s lives; they are even more digital natives than adults. They’ve always had smartphones in their hands, touching screens before they can talk. Unfortunately, technology standards switch rapidly, making it difficult for teachers to stay updated with technological advancements. Especially if their equipment becomes obsolete every few years.
Technology is also starting to have a big impact on how universities teach. For example, some schools now provide MOOCs (Massive Open Online Courses) that allow students from all over the world to access classes taught by professors at top universities without moving from home. Many students now use their mobile devices to take notes from lectures or seminars.
How Beneficial or Detrimental AI Technology Will Be?
Although Artificial Intelligence technology might have a bright future ahead, the world sees potential harm coming from this development. Apparently, over time, many jobs will be replaced by robots. Therefore, more emphasis needs to be placed on developing potential skills for students in the future world, not just learning how to work hard at repetitive tasks.
On the other hand, AI will also play a positive role by helping humans solve complex problems and save time, allowing people to have more free time to spend with their loved ones or pursue interests.
With technology being so embedded into their lives, it can be very challenging to use AI responsibly, whether it’s used for good or bad. After all, humans are the only species that control this type of power. How beneficial or harmful AI is will depend on how humanity decides to embrace it, either to solve problems or control citizens as a dictatorship.
The Good of AI Technology
Though we went over the advantages and disadvantages of Artificial Intelligence in greater detail, here’s a brief rundown:
- Helping solve problems. Look no further than numerous other articles on our website to see its effect on education, farming, data processing and security, authentication, and more.
- Helps us save time. AI and robots can do most of the menial tasks for us, so we have more free time to spend with our loved ones and pursue interests.
- It could help us understand and cure diseases. With the rapid advancement in medicine, we could cure most of our deadliest diseases and solve many current problems. The world’s population keeps growing exponentially, but our resources are limited. This is a method of finding the answers without spending too much money or time on research.
The Bad of AI Technology
AI also has some issues. Like any other technology, we should be very careful while developing it. So, it’s time to mention the drawbacks of AI:
1. Humans Will Be Replaced
If technology replaces most lowly, repetitive tasks, what will happen to the people dependent on these jobs? What about those who were doing them before, and who will hire them? That means they’ll lose their jobs without doing anything wrong because someone developed an AI that does it faster and better. This is happening now, but with the advancement, it’ll only increase over time; there’s no way around it.
2. The Unprecedented Errors
What if a robot saves a life by operating on a person? If the same thing happens again, but this time by accident—who would be at fault then? Even though no one was hurt, there will be some unforeseen consequences resulting from the actions taken by technology that are meant to save lives.
3. Privacy Issues
In recent years, people have been giving social media and technology companies more privacy and freedom for free services or discounted prices. They do so because they rely on them for information and communication with friends. What happens when everything you ever said online gets discovered and used against you? What’s stopping it from happening now?
4. Access to Information
What if technology is developed with bad intentions to control and harm people in the future? The question is still left with no proper explanation, as the command remains in the hands of those who developed it.
5. Changes to the Natural Way of Living
What will happen when we’re able to live forever through cybernetics or transferring our consciousness into machines so that we can keep searching for more knowledge and pleasure but still let others experience the joys of life too?
What should the government do?
Let’s go over two primary steps governments should take:
1. Enforce Responsibility
Companies that develop new technologies should be held accountable for whatever happens, and governments should monitor and punish them. What if they don’t and something bad happens? We, through the government, should make them responsible for their actions to protect people’s interests first and foremost.
People in charge should ensure technology never gets into the hands of those who will use it for evil purposes, such as cybercriminals or terrorists. This could lead to disastrous consequences in the future too.
What companies should do
Companies must be transparent about their product and services. They need to make sure everything is clear before someone buys/subscribes to their service or product. This way, there’ll be less confusion down the line, which could otherwise get worse if things get out of control.
How to remain human in a tech-driven world?
But then, how can a human remain relevant in such a world that clearly favors technology, especially when technology is equated with progress and development?
First, we have to admit to ourselves that technology is never going to take a back seat. Thus, if we can actually focus on being humans, chances are we just might come out on top.
Take a business, for example. Now, a company can exist without any technology, but it can’t exist without humans. While there might be debates about the application of AI and automation, one has to understand that not every human skill and quality is replaceable, and all we have to do is find that.
Thus, we should focus on traits such as empathy, creativity, collaboration, innovation, awareness, and mentoring, as these are skills that technology cannot replicate. These are what make us human. Yes, technology is the key to our future, but without humans, there will not be any future to look forward to.
Given below are a few emerging technologies, their applications, and the challenges they face:
|Artificial Intelligence||Data-centric decision-making, using data to make predictions||Ethical concerns, no clear regulations or guidelines, job replacement, and existing bias|
|IoT||Smart devices that can help our daily tasks||Raises privacy and security concerns|
|Blockchain||A decentralized network that can be used to make trading and finance more transparent and reliable||Energy consumption, effects on the environment, and regulatory concerns|
|AR/VR||The amalgamation of the real and virtual worlds can be the next internet and communication method||Limited exposure, Very costly,|
|Quantum Computing||Performing much faster calculations and problem-solving for Physics and Math||Very costly hardware, problems with error correction, and scalability|
|3D Printing||Can print anything||Requires raw materials, is costly, slow, and has limited output|
New technology appears daily, solving many existing problems and creating new challenges for future generations. Technology challenges affect all sectors of our lives: education, the manufacturing industry, medicine, and entertainment.
For example, due to the growing demand for people’s time and attention, manufacturers create devices that allow them to travel less or do repetitive tasks at work, such as automatic coffee machines or dishwashers.
Ultimately, it’s up to humans
Technology has many benefits, but it also creates challenges that will impact future generations. For example, technology is now entering the era of the Internet of Things, allowing devices to connect to networks. Soon, there won’t be any isolated household appliances in isolation; they’ll all become interconnected and form one global network.
This might seem like a very special technological advancement, but at the same time, it brings us back to the question, “How far can humans go?”
The current pandemic is a perfect lesson for humans. Where countries are still battling it through, the question remains unanswered, can a pandemic be a human error or purely natural? The use of technology in warfare (such as making biological weapons) still poses a big question mark.