How does technology distract us from the world around us?
“Today everything exists to end in a photograph.” (Susan Sontag)

“All that happens must be known” (Eggers)

The person in this image seems to be taking a really astonishing photo. But she looks to be very motivated in getting the perfect picture by adjusting the brightness and zoom on the photo. This way she will be able to share it with friends and family on social media. What she is not capturing is all the fun and activivites around her. In her photo, the scene looks like the sun is about to set and it is around night time. But when you look outside of the phone, it is a beautiful sunny day with endless amounts of activities to do. She has become way too distracted by technology. Instead of living in the moment, she is trying to have others live it for her. In Eggers novel, The Circle, a company tries to create a worldwide idea that everything that occurs must be known by everyone else. The girl in this photo is trying to do that. But in the process, she is missing out on everything else that is going on around her.

“I am not the only person who uses his computer mainly for the purpose of diddling with his computer.” (Dave Barry)

“Just beyond her, Mae saw Alistair, who waved to her, and began texting” (Eggers 165)

School studies are very important. Depending on how much you work and study, it will eventually determine the type of future you will live. But students today are procrastinating like no other. They just can’t seem to get away from that phone or computer for just 1–2 hours so that they can study or get their work done. When it comes to studying it can be a challenge to focus on their studies without checking their phone or computer every once in a while. It is resulting in many students staying up late, writing last minute essays, or crunching in a lot of information that they need to memorize for a test. Technology, in my opinion, is the number one reason why students procrastinate today. It is their biggest distractions to their studies. As shown in Eggers quote, young people are so attached to their phones that they don’t even have time to say hello anymore. They will give a quick wave and go back to whatever they were doing on their device.

“One way to boost our will power and focus is to manage our distractions instead of letting them manage us.” (Daniel Goleman)

“You no longer pick up on basic human communication clues. You’re at a table with three humans, all of whom are looking at you and trying to talk to you, and you’re staring at a screen! Searching for strangers in… Dubai!” (Eggers)

This photo is a prime example of how technology is distracting us from the world around us. This man in this photo is curled up on his couch and is giving 110% of his attention to his phone. His pet dogs, on the other hand, lay lifeless on the other side of the couch. They are hoping that the man would just get off his phone and come play fetch with them. Just like eggers explains in his novel and in the quote above, humans are not seeing how being distracted by technology is impacting those around them. It is giving others the notion that they are less important than a phone or computer. Sooner or later, everyone will only communicate with each other through the use of technology. The idea of sitting down and having a conversation with someone will cease to exist.

“Yes kids loves technology, but they also love Legos, scented markers, handstands, books, and mud puddles. It’s all about balance” (K.G. a first grade teacher)

“…haven’t explored the gym, and you’ve barely explored the campus. I think you’ve used about 1 percent of our facilities” (Eggers 178)

This young child seems to be fascinated by the T.V. screen. It is the center of the universe in this photo. Even though the child has all these toys and objects around him, the T.V. has caught his attention and will probably keep on caching his attention every time he enters this room. These technological distractions are beginning to start at an earlier age as the years go by. As the younger generation begin to interact with technology, they will grow up and loose thought of exploring other activities such as sports, reading, writing, etc. As Eggers explains, humans will use only 1 percent of what the world has to offer as they become attached to technology from a young age. They will be pulled away from other resources because of the mind capturing presence that technology has over other things in this world.

“By now we have devised a particular technology-an amalgam of instrumental knowledge and equipment- for everything we make or do.” (Leo Marx)

“My problem with paper is that all communication dies with it. It holds no possibility of continuity” (Eggers)

The man in this photo seems to be doing something that was very ordinary just 20 years ago. That is opening up a book and reading it. But now technology can be used for everything. You can read, write, sing, act, etc. The man in this photo has become so attached to his phone that even while reading a book he will sneak his phone in. There is no need for anything else. Technology will do everything for us at one point in the future. It will soon become just the user and his piece of technology. There will be no more usage of anything else. That is why technology will ultimately become the biggest distractions for humans and their involvement with the rest of the world. As noted by Eggers, the usage of paper does not come up to par with the usage of a computer to write or read something. People favor using technology over ordinary books and papers to read and write. In favoring technology, comes a lot of distractions. Many tablets, phones, and computers are able to multitask which means if someone wants to read a book on a tablet, they would also be able to receive messages from friends or other notifications that would distract them from their original task.

Works Cited

“Daniel Goleman Quote.” BrainyQuote. Xplore, n.d. Web. 25 Mar. 2015. <http://www.brainyquote.com/quotes/quotes/d/danielgole585905.html>.

Eggers, Dave. The Circle. New York: Vintage, 2013. Print.

Marx, Leo. “Technology: The Emergence of a Hazardous Concept.” Technology and Culture 51.3 (2010): 561–77. Web. 01 Mar. 2015.

Pintrest. Christine Buchanan, n.d. Web. 25 Mar. 2015. <https%3A%2F%2Fwww.pinterest.com%2Fpin%2F167618417356314956%2F>.

Popova, Maria. “Aesthetic Consumerism and the Violence of Photography: What Susan Sontag Teaches Us about Visual Culture and the Social Web.” Brain Pickings RSS. N.p., n.d. Web. 25 Mar. 2015. <http://www.brainpickings.org/2013/09/16/susan-sontag-on-photography-social-media/>.

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