I noticed an article about a report on how technology is reversing...or changing...evolution of humans.
I think that posture is the least of humanity’s problem.
Computers, calculators, smart phones, etc. are taking over simple tasks once performed by the brain. Humans are less able to do what even a child could do in the past. Children are already not learning proper grammar, because their language is dominated by texting, and they think spell check can solve awl problems. Who needs to learn vocabulary, if you can look up words on your iPad? Who needs to learn multiplication tables, if you have a calculator on your phone? Brain are being less and less challenged.
Before printing was invented, people memorized stories and information. Books spread knowledge, but the average brain no longer needed to store as much. Nor can it. This explains, perhaps, why the most common passwords are “password” and “123456”.
One of the more interesting facts I once noticed (and have since forgotten) is the curriculum of a high school student in the late 1800s in the United States. No child today--or even college graduates--could master the requirements. Schools have been dumbed down to make everyone a winner and help them acquire student loans and never-ending debt. Only those lucky enough to attend an elite school or obtain a scholarship are permitted to excel. People are becoming dumber, easily satisfied with cheap flatscreen televisions, and political leaders are happy.
The move to have computers and robots run the world bodes badly for humans, who are evolving backwards and giving up the keys to their castle...
I watched an interesting program (obviously not on a US-owned media outlet) on recycling of electronic waste. I had no idea about the magnitude of the problem. Bits are saved and reused, but most ends up harming the environment. As with most negative aspects of modern life, the United States is the most-voracious user of electronics/computers and thus contributes most to the problems. Humans might have evolved out of Africa, which does not explain or justify so much of the waste ending up on that continent. Of course, I am also guilty, because I own too many electronic products, all of which will become obsolete, be replaced, and end up in some recycling facility or landfill.
One of the things that caught my attention during the program was about computer games. I know that this is a popular hobby/compulsion/addiction. They focussed on games that are based upon “killing” people. Countless people are spending hours each day trying to destroy “people” and “property” in a virtual world. Perhaps, this explains why Americans accept real killing by firearms with little or no protest. Computer games have desensitized them.
I am, perhaps, one of the least-frequent players of computer games alive today. Only newborn children use them less. I tried the first one: the tennis game that let you bounce a “ball” back and forth on a screen. I tried Donkey Kong...once. And, I played Mario Brothers a few times, when it first came out. Since then, my only use has been the occasional game of solitaire on my computer.
Today, I took an IQ test in a British newspaper and discovered thatI am not as dumb as I thought. My brain still works. I am able to think logically to solve most problems. I did not achieve a perfect score, but I did well.
After this success, I watch a program on logic. I felt that I should be able to understand what they were talking about. I did...more or less. I try to be logical in all I do, even if I often fail. Human frailty.
The brain and a computer governed by logic. So, I--like all humans--am like a computer. Unfortunately, most humans do not think or act logically. Fortunately, a few intelligent humans give computers their logic. Computers are based upon logic, so humans might fear that computers will replace them. If not programmed by humans, computers don’t work. Or, they can pull the plug or switch off the power. That is a logical conclusion to a not-so logical fear. I think...
I doubt that I am the only one to have noticed the irony in Apple naming its customer service area “Genius Bar”. This is a place where confused, not-too-bright, untrained, helpless, etc. people gather to ask stupid questions about machines. Whenever in the vicinity, I marvel at the patience of those wearing colored tee shirts and their ability to keep a straight face.
Recently, I stumbled across an article on computer passwords. Of course, my passwords are useless (despite my delusion of being clever). And, I compound my stupidity by using some passwords on more than one site. I am a target waiting to be hit.
I have since read a bunch of articles on the subject and discovered the proper method to develop passwords. I have a system that is easy to remember and difficult to crack (according to a password checker). For example, one of my old passwords could be cracked in less than a day by someone with the appropriate software and hacking skill. My new passwords would keep a computer busy for 16,683 centuries. By the time a hacker cracked my sites, I will have been through several reincarnations...or been long dead.
Once again, I had a strange thought. Sorry. I can’t seem to stop.
I was thinking about what happens to all the data created for the Internet. Is everything stored forever? Is anything erased, like burning leaves in the fall, which disappear into smoke (carbon atoms?)?
If all data is saved, a huge pile must exist somewhere, because a whole bunch has been created since the advent of the computers...and the mountain grows. Perhaps, data expands like universe, whose extent is unknowable.
But, that was not my strange thought. I wondered if the saving of data could be a metaphor and compared to people’s belief in Heaven (and Hell). All humans that ever roamed the earth (and associated pets) are supposed to reside in Heaven (or Hell), which must be rather large spaces. That’s a whole bunch of folks and the crowd grows each day...like the total amount of data. Perhaps, they could also expand like the universe...
_ Most people have heard about Apple Mac. Well, there is a new fruit. It’s called Lemon Mac.
That is how I have labeled my new iMac. My experience with it has altered my opinion about Apple. I had several years of happy and trouble-free use of my iBook. I wanted a large desktop model and was fortunate to receive one for my birthday. It has caused trouble since the first day. It would not be so bad if something less-important that the internet bit failed.
I had no option other than to lug a heavy box to the Apple store in Frankfurt. I was fortunate enough to have one nearby, but parking is never close to any Apple shop I have seen. An iMac is bloody heavy and the carrying handle is not the best. I should be pleased that the replace the faulty part, but received no compensation for my aggravation or physical effort.
Yesterday, the Wifi went on strike again. Once again, I am faced with the trek to Frankfurt. I know that it is the iMac, because my other two Macs work. Naturally, it is the heaviest one that must be returned for repair.
I have the feeling, based upon my experience with one item, that Apple was better before it became so popular. Perhaps, that’s sour grapes, but I’m the one that suffered. Because it was a gift, it’s tough to complain, but...
The iMac looks very nice on my desk, but is almost worthless. It is a classic case of form over function.
Fortunately, I also have a PC (which I am using at the moment). I like Word better than OfficeMac Word or Pages. I have tried them all and returned to the PC version. It is far more dependable and works better with publishing. It is not fruity at all, rather good old meat and potato dependable.
At the time that I was a student, GE had an advertising claim that read “Progress is our most important product”. I had a teacher, who said that the claim should read “Progress is our most important problem”.
At the time, I did not give this much thought, because it was irrelevant to what I had to learn to get good grades. Now, I have growing sympathy with his opinion. This comes to mind when I contemplate my new iMac. It represents progress, I suppose, but it is a problem for me. I should be thankful, because it was a gift. I like its modern design and large screen. The dashboard works okay, if I need to calculate some number, look up a word, or play solitaire. Unfortunately, I prefer my aged (4 years is ancient in the ever-changing computer world) MacBook for major operations, like Safari and Mail. At times, I even like my older PC better, especially for Word.
Prior to writing novels, the author enjoyed a multifaceted career: from decorated combat aviator to advertising professional to global communications director of a major consumer brand. He has traveled the world and met sports, film and television stars, political leaders, and royalty. He graduated from Middlebury College, is married, lives in Germany, and has two grown children.