Captive In the Age of the Computer This work is considered exceptional by our editorial staff.

“There is no reason for any individual to have a computer in his home.” This is the idea brought forth in 1977 by Ken Olsen, the president of Digital Equipment, once and a leading vendor in computer systems and software. In 2011 our idea of the necessity of the computer has vastly changed. Rather than talk to their friends or actually study hard, people’s ideas are transfused by a system of wired devices. The media that affects me the most is that of the information age. It seems that even soon the veins that course though our body will be replaced by wires. I feel we are being forced into an age we are not yet responsible to deal with.

As I go from class to class technology is of common site. Rather than talk to their friends you see kids texting away, careful to make sure a teacher won’t catch them. The prized possession of the cell phone has replaced the human voice. To tell the truth, personally I have never even sent a text. Texting though is a problem that affects me daily. Every class you see kids using phones to check Facebook, text or play games, giving the teacher the highest disrespect possible. They try being sneaky putting a purse or binder on their desk to hide their phone use, but everyone knows, even the teachers. Testing for many is now considered a joke. While I’m yanking my hair out over an answer some people don’t bother to study, and look up the answer on their phone or text their friend for the answer. Technological advances were meant to make us smarter, but I think much of them are dumbing us up.

In high school we are nudged to grasp the power of the keyboard over the power of the pen. Cursive is now becoming a handwriting of past. Like many before it, is a skill that is now disappearing. Many elementary schools don’t even teach cursive anymore. I am in the 11th grade and many of my classmates are unable or unwilling to write in the much quicker cursive. Even now as I write, I am clicking away at my keyboard. Mailing handwritten letters may soon be a thing of the past in total. Rather than write you could just send an instant email. Who knows, maybe a hundred years from now humans will not even be able to operate a pen. The Spanish novelist Miguel de Cervantes Saavedra once said, “The pen is the tongue of the mind”. Then what is the computer?

As years advance and as technology advances we must ask ourselves one thing. Is this source of media friend or foe? This reliance on information age media is a vice which we are unable to break. It is a barrier to our real knowledge and emotions. It is the 21st century.





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