Modern Technology: The Darker Side

We recently published an article praising innovations in technology over the years – Four Fantastic Technological Innovations – and while technology has certainly been a boon in many fields, there is also a darker side. What follows then are a number of examples where advancements in technology have not been so helpful:

AI-Driven Recorded Phone Menus

How difficult is it these days to actually talk to a human? These AI-driven recorded phone menus drive me crazy. Dribbling on about inconsequential matters, press this button or that button. You sit through maybe half a dozen or more options with which button to press and, in the end, none of them fit what you a calling about.

In the early days of this type of technology, I would babble incoherently at a fast speed and, eventually, get put through to a human. Now, if I try that same tactic, all that comes back is… Sorry, I didn’t quite get that, or something very similar. It seems the AI has gotten a lot smarter. More and more online institutions are also abandoning human contact – Facebook, and eBay just to name two. Seems the age of human interaction has been well and truly left behind.

Social Media

I do not like the way Social Media has evolved. These days, the irony is that Social Media has become the most common cause behind anti-social behavior. I understand that Social Media can be a great way for separated families and friends to keep in touch but the massive popularity of Social Media has also led to many dark aspects. Fake ads, scams, bullying, abuse, racism, and other anti-social behavior, all are rife on Social Media.

I was looking at an ad for an item on sale on Facebook just the other day where the price seemed just too good to be true. Following a bit of quick research, it was patently obvious that it was a scam, yet around 30% of the hundreds of comments stated that they had already ordered one of these items. I suppose that, with Social Media’s phenomenal reach, there is bound to be a high number of gullible folk among the multitude.

I also think about the bullying and abuse on Social Media. I would bet my bottom dollar that these people who are posting their nasty comments from the safety and comfort of their own homes would never have the courage to say those same things in a face-to-face situation.

Modern Cars

I am currently driving a brand-new SUV and, while I do love some of the new technology, there is a lot that I do not appreciate. The new SUV is simply lovely to drive but it keeps on wanting to drive for me – steering for me, constantly beeping at perceived obstacles, and slamming on the brakes when cornering. I’ve been driving for 60 years with never an accident and the last thing I need is for a car to be doing the driving for me.

I guess there would be some folk who appreciate a lending hand while driving but I certainly am not one of them. In some modern vehicles, some of this driver-assist technology can be turned off but, alas, not in mine.

This is what’s known as… progress. Hmmm…

Now, do you have any peeves about situations caused by modern technology? Let us know in the comments.

6 thoughts on “Modern Technology: The Darker Side”

  1. That is one reason my personal vehicle is a 2007 Ford F150, beside the fact that I cannot afford a anything new. Enjoy that SUV!!!!

  2. Shobha Mathur

    Technology wanting to help you is everywhere . I do not drive, but I do not like talking machines, and especially Gmail trying to tell me who I mean to write to and what I should respond.
    But I guess this peevishness is with older folks. the new generation is used to them from the beginning and do not see anything amiss, rather they welcome it. To me it is making them intellectually lazy, no one wants to do any sum in the head, or remember spelling or grammar. In any case spellings are not important. GM, LOL, etc have taken over I dont know saving how many hours for the writers to fritter more time to find more things to save time .
    Brave New World.

    1. You are spot on about the younger generation. Not only can they not do simple math in their heads, they cannot use paper and pencil. As for spelling, it is a miracle they can find something on the Internet, using their short hand, Mindblower!

  3. Somebody at GM (around 1999) decided it would be a good thing to have the headlights turn on (and stay on, no override feature) when it was dark outside.
    More than once I got the evil eye from dinner patrons when backing out of the parking space directly facing the restaurant’s picture window. Couldn’t even turn down the lights to daytime running mode.
    Not even a courtesy response from GM when I complained about this automatic safety feature. However, this division of GM shortly disappeared following my complaint…

    1. Cliff, just talking about the running lights which come on when the vehicle starts, has one major flaw. Some drivers are unaware that only the front light come on, so they fail to turn on their lights later at night believing they have front and real coverage. The companies who came up with this idea should have taken the lack of knowledge and had rear light also come on, Mindblower!

  4. I am glad I don’t have lane assist and autonomous braking, but I would turn both of these on for a long straight highway after lunch or at night. Modern cars and highways put people to sleep and this tech can save lives. I would need the option to turn it on though.

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