Instead of viewing technology from a negative point of view, how does technology give people their own voice and the confidence to use that technological voice?

Through just a few simple images, technology can be shown in basic situations streaming through everyday actions. The questions being associated with each image is to support the main essay question, how can technology truly be a positive impact on today’s modern society?

What is the subject’s relationship with the screen?

Here pictured is a young girl sitting with her laptop. There is a deep connection between her and the screen. She’s smiling, as though the image on the screen is giving her a feeling of content. There is a part of the screen that projects a part of her, which is her twitter account. Something that appears to be a thing she is proud of, it makes her happy.

Does the screen serve as a mirror or a veil?

In this specific image, the young lady here is using a social media outlet called Tumblr. Tumblr is a way for people from allover the world to post blogs, images, and videos; a forum in which expressing yourself and your personality is key to achieving success. The girl here is expressing herself through this social media outlet. Something that many teenagers and young adults do every single day. People find joy and connections through Tumblr; a way they can express his or her own sense of humor or any way they are feeling, and each have his or her own audience that reacts to his or her post, an audience that supports them.

What version of self is revealed or concealed, reflected, or distorted b the screen?

This is me taking a scary, unsure step. To answer this question, I choice the image of my own writerly-self. When I was thinking of which image to project for myself, I wasn’t able to to think of the “perfect” picture until I recalled this photo of me. This image is very relatable to how I felt at the beginning of taking this WSC course. I am slowly revealing myself through the life reserve. I am taking the step by revealing myself and my face does in fact show excitement about that step. But I am also being held in the life reserve, it is my safety blanket so I don’t drown.

What kind of self (or selves) does the subject promote on screen?

What is quite interesting about this particular image is the girl pictured is sketching out the image of the picture on the screen. The woman on the screen is from older times, most likely the 1960s, and she is absolutely gorgeous, a timeless beauty. Something all women look up to, someone we could all agree on adoring. The subject here is promoting the drive to almost look better due to the image on the screen: wear similar clothes, get the hairstyle, put on the same make up. Young girls nowadays crave to be beautiful, and sometimes by doing so, we aspire to look like particular people, i.e. models, actresses, singers. But the idea behind this photo could be taken in a much different way. This image could also be promoting the idea of generating art through media. Being able to show one’s own art through social media and technology, a quicker and easier way to have it seen by society.

How is the subject’s identity tied to her own screen?

The girl pictured here is holding the laptop in front of her own mouth; her eyes are veering off to a different direction of the camera, trying not to make eye contact. She doesn’t want the attention, she wants to give it to the screen. The screen is her mouth, the laptop is speaking for her. The way it projects images, images that she wants to represent herself is aiming directly at the eye of her audience.

In my WSC course for the past few months, students were given the opportunity to read The Circle by Dave Eggers. This novel opposes the view I am trying to reach here though, The Circle concludes with how hazardous technology is becoming; technology is taking away the ability for people to use interpersonal communication. Yet here and there in the novel, readers are shown how technology is beneficial to the Circle, the company within the novel.

“Mae’s new feeling of competence and confidence carried her through the week, and given how close she was to the top 2,000, she stayed at her desk the entire weekend…” (Eggers 193) Have you ever gotten a feeling exuberance while writing a paper, the ideas just keep flowing out of you? There is something about typing on a keyboard that is so much more refreshing than receiving cramps in one’s hands from holding a pen to paper for hours on end. I truly don’t know what it is about technology, but once we figure it out, once we get going, it is a nonstop pass to that touchdown dance in the end-zone. It is almost indescribable, this feeling, Mae knows it though; sometimes you just can’t stop, you are so honed in on your work, everything else around you becomes a blur. For once, that blur is a good thing.

“Mae is driving home for the first time since her father had been put on the Circle’s insurance plan. There is not a cloud in the sky, which represents how, for the first time in a while, Mae is able to go home without anything looming over her.” (Eggers 253) Mae’s father was brought onto the Circle’s highly intelligent as well as helpful, insurance plan. The Circle is technologically based, workers do his or her research through the Circle’s technology. But besides that, Mae is also taking a nice ride in her car, another large piece of technology. I feel as though at times, people forget about cars and other sources of transportation are technology. Car rides for some people is a sort of relaxant, especially for me. Whenever I just need to cool off or need something taken off of my mind, I hop in my car and drive. There is a feeling of controlling such a powerful piece of technology that fills a person with pride and confidence.

“Every morning Mae put on a necklace, much like Stewart’s, but lighter, smaller, and with the lens worn over her heart.” (Eggers 309) Technology is not all that bad. Given is a quote about Mae when she first started her “special” job as a member of the Circle. That little chain and amulet was much more than just a necklace, it was technology wrapped around her neck. Mae wore the camera everywhere she went, and she enjoyed it. Mae was given the chance to give eyes to those willing to watch, those wanting to see what it is like to see what another person sees.

Technology has done so much more than just merely giving confidence to those to use his or her voice through media; technology has given people hope. People that have been in much darker places than you and I could ever imagine. Think about not having a particular limb, being death, being incapable to walk. We can imagine it as much as we want, how painful and how much of a struggle it would be, but for most of us, we will never experience that. But what about those that do? What about those who go through his or her days with their indifferences, not having a “normal” life. Advances in technology is changing that. Through specific scientific technology, people are becoming mobile again, people can hear for the first time. In this Super Bowl 2014 advertisement for Microsoft, it projects the hope that all of these children and adults have, how their lives change due to technology; we see what a REAL smile looks like.

Social media has become one of the most powerful ways of learning; nowadays, it is truly how younger generations receive news, through Facebook and Twitter. People see what his or her friends are doing, what is happening in their world. Social media users often make some sort of status update at least once a day, and in general, they are expressing his or her emotions. That is when friends find out when someone is upset, when someone is calling out for help. Social media and technology is a medium for people to use to cry out for help, to get noticed. In this article about the National Network to End Domestic Violence, Verizons teams up with the organization to help make it’s stance heard allover the world.

“Twenty years from now you will be more disappointed by the things you didn’t do than by the ones you did do. So throw off the bowlines. Sail away from the safe harbor. Catch the trade winds in your sail. Explore. Dream. Discover.” — Mark Twain

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