The Mobile Visual Environment

From black and white to colour, from encyclopaedia to Wikipedia  we have entered the digital age  it is no longer the revolution as technology has advanced to become a part of everyday life.  We have come a long way from the Motorola DynaTAC, dial up connection, and the Whole Earth Catalogue.  We are now at a time where people have phones smaller  than the palm of your hand , high speed fibre optic wireless broadband, even phones today have constant access to the internet with speeds that put dialup to shame. The Whole Earth Catalogue is now Google, and even Google itself has advanced dramatically in the recent years, its innovation has inspired the product Google Glass which allows people access the uses of Google on the move. People can follow maps, browse the web and even use voice activated commands to take pictures and record notes whilst completing their day to day tasks. From the first computer appropriately named “Colossus”, which took up the majority of a building, and was used in the war simply to perform tasks such as code-breaking, we now have tablet devices such as the Galaxy Note, the Nexus 7 or the iWannatakeyourmoneypad (iPad) which allows us to achieve even greater significant feats such as the ability to shoot small birds at coloured pigs for maximum score. Full working computers have also reached the size of a credit card with the invention of the Raspberry Pi, an ingenious but compact computer fit to carry out all of the functions as a standard desktop only 10 years ago. With the digital age evolving so has Computer Gaming, games in the 70’s and 80’s such as Pong, Asteroids and Tetris are considered Retro or Antique in today’s society as we now live in an age where the idea of gaming is a Worldwide online environment where people are infinitely connected to other people who are also playing these games. Xbox Live, Playstation Network and games such as World of Warcraft have entirely constructed virtual worlds where people can interact, socialise and generally have the craic with friends. We now have seen new technologies such as the 3D printer which allows something that can be created digitally on a computer for example, to become a reality. If you can design it, it can be created in 3D. While this may allow us to open a new world of possibilities, it can take away from the personal care and attention that  a human would put into handcrafting products. An item such as a 3D printer is very expensive at the minute but with the rate that we are moving forward it is only a matter of time till a 3D printer becomes a household standard. However with great technology, comes great stupidity, by this I mean people become more dependent on technology and lose the ability to think for themselves and make choices based on reality rather than technology. When the Sat-Nav became popular and road users got on to this technological advancement, they also lost their common sense and when the device had bugs such as confusing some major rivers as roads, a number of natural-selection candidates where not able to use their own vision and blindly followed the technology’s advice which was not very useful at the bottom of a river. With the advancement of things like social networking we also have a noticeable decline in our privacy as people can frequently see what we are up to, where we are going or have been, or  even know what you had for breakfast this morning. This is very different to the way things were not only 20 years ago where the home landline was the only method of communicating with people you were not immediately with. Information you share online is not only seen by the people you are “Friends” with online but is also held by large date collection companies such as the NSA. Technology is so common in everyday life now that children from the ages of 2-3 have access to these tablets, this allowance is causing long term psychological effects.


Dr Graham said that young technology addicts experienced the same withdrawal symptoms as alcoholics or heroin addicts, when the devices were taken away.

He warned that the condition prevented young people from forming normal social relationships, leaving them drained by the constant interaction.

You could argue all day about the pros and cons of advances in digital technology, but the long and short of it is, we ARE moving forward, at an alarming rate at that. So it’s sink or swim, keep up to date or fall behind like the senior citizens we try to teach internet to, but technology will keep moving on, as innovation waits for nobody.


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