Technology in our society

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No doubt, technology is increasingly important in the modern world. It is amazing how fast
technology has been developed. Nearly every major advance was invented in the last century.
These invention are always planned for a positive result, however the negative effects often
do not become apparent until after the event. These effects will be deal in the following
paragraphs with related materials.

The text, "Whose Life is it Anyway?", by Brian Clark, has clearly illustrated that with the
development of medical technology, people can now have a better quality of life. Moreover,
many lives which normally would not survive without the advance in medical treatment can now
be artificially prolonged. The central character, Ken Harrison, who becomes a quadriplegic
after a car accident, has met this situation. Nevertheless, it is cruel to ask him to face
this life if he does not desire to. He can no longer sculpt, run, move, kiss or have any
form of sexual fulfillment. Obviously, his normal life has drifted away. The tendency to
sustain people's lives, just because the technology is available, is intolerance under
certain circumstances. It is the individual patient who must make a decision about whether
to keep himself alive. "What is the point of prolonging a person's biological life if it is
obtained at the cost of a serious assault on that person's liberty?" There is probably no
simple answer for this question. Any patient's decision should be respected, not based on
the fact of all available technologies. This medical technology has the potential for both
good and bad results. However, it is very important in today's society.

"Insurance in the Genes" is a piece of valuable material which explores another area in the
technological field. Nowadays, genetic engineering essentially plays an important role.
Genetic testing can predict a person's biological use-by date, forecasting everything from
heart attacks to breast cancer. People can therefore have a basic concept of their health
situation and prevent what is going to happen if technology allows them to know this
beforehand. "Up until now, only 50 genetic tests have been developed to detect diseases. But
within a decade, there will be tests for 5000 diseases." It is a remarkable increase. In the
near future, hopefully, genetic testing will be employed to reveal potential health risks.
It is a positive effect of technology in the modern world.

Another useful source for the effects of technology in our world is the documentary. On 23
April 1996, SBS broadcasted a film entitled "Weapon: A Battle for Humanity". It recorded
that landmines and laser weapons are devils. Evidently, mines do not just shatter individual
lives, they also shatter whole communities. In World War II, mines were used to be defensive
weapons. However, they do not just only kill soldiers, but also farmers farming, children
playing and women collecting food. People in the past or even now have complained about
their existence.

Laser weapons have been abused in military field. Militarism plans to install these weapons
in war. Their power have been recognized that under a certain condition, laser weapons can
result in losing sight. No medical science today can actually give sight back.

Weapons should only be objects of defense. However, because of the advance of technology,
they have become more and more powerful. Scientists clearly know that misusing weapons will
result in deaths, but they are still working towards more powerful weapons which can result
in even more death. Why is this? Weapons lead to homelessness, disasters, sacrifices and
death. This study of the development of landmines and laser weapons shows that technology
can be used for destructive and immoral reasons. It is shocking to know that the USA, a
peaceful nation and a member of the United Nations, has spent more than two-thirds of its
research and development finance on military projects in the 1980s.

My personal experience has inspired in me a lot of understanding of this issue. In today's
society, communication and transport are significant features. Over the last decade, their
developments in technology are rapidly increasing. People who want to go to other countries
can travel by airplane; and people who want to communicate with friends overseas can use the
telephone, fax or Internet. Not only in Australia, but also in other developing countries,
Internet has become more and more common. With the use of Internet, I can now travel all
over the world without stepping out of my door. Most importantly, a large amount of money is
saved and having Internet is important to me. Internet has taken communication a further
step: all information is totally accessible to any who owns this form of technology. It
opens up a new international community which is positive and should lead to a peaceful
modern world.

So in this world today, technology is perhaps the most important driving force of our
society, creating dilemmas concerning life and death, changing nature with genetic
engineering, developing such immoral weapons and the instant advantages of using Internet.


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