By Jesse Lopez
The big challenge all of us will have to overcome in the days past the COVID-19 pandemic will be reversing our personal and psychological dependency on technology. Today we live in a virtual world where we no longer have to physically communicate to each other. Want to complain about a bad restaurant experience? Why not just talk to the manager, possibly resolving the issue, correcting mistakes, establishing lessons learned for all parties involved? Because Yelping about it is way more straightforward and less confrontational. It’s just easier. That has become our answer to everything these days.
By way of the smart and educated tech industry developing rapidly, booming with new websites, APP’s, video games, and now artificial intelligence compiling data in our new era of automation we see the average human mind and awareness becoming easier to control and manipulate. Data is the new gold, and you are the new mine shaft. But what is that data really doing for us as an individual? It mostly keeps your corporate overlords who buy this data close by monitoring your internet avatars every move. Watching and studying every digital fingerprint left behind guiding each flock member back to their grazing pasture, righteously recommending only products, services, and entertainment selected and approved by them as your higher power. We have even given recording power to devices like smart phones, computers, TV’s, gizmos like Amazon Alexa, or your google assistant listening and suggesting exactly what you need, when you need it. We have all conversed around how “freaky and crazy it is” at the dinner table or at gathering among peers, friends or family members.
When you purchase a new computer the primary thing you need to do is protect your device thru anti-virus software shielding your investment and personal information. Why hasn’t anyone created an anti-cookies software? Something that would let you decide what type of cookies you’d like to select. I really am tired of getting suggestive advertisements for things I really don’t want and need.
For example, my google assistant who is always listening to me talk, breath, cough, sneeze and fart. Once overheard me helping an older tiny woman at PetSmart get canned cat food off the top shelf that was just a tad out of her reach. I offered her two choices. The one she pointed at and one next to her selection that happened to be on sale thinking she might want to save some money. She did choose the one on sale. After handing her the selected brand we both walked away from each other never again seeing her another moment in my life. Now I get kitty litter and cat food advertisement weekly, and my family doesn’t own a feline. Similar occurrences have happened helping my mother or other elderly folks look something up online only to get those targeted adds that I’ll never open or use.
It’s all around us. Netflix, Hulu, or Amazon Prime all use software taking your profiles complied date that suggest what they think is best for you based or your previously viewed options. This programming ends up programming our minds to relax and let the bot do its work. We each slowly stop thinking for ourselves guided by our subconscious making predetermined decisions minimizing impulsive behavior. We are creatures of comfort, and when we become comfortable, we become all around lazy. Lazier in our personal activity, lazier in our relationships, lazier in our health, and lazier in our pursuit of happiness. Why? Because everything we think we need is right there on that little touchscreen you’re probably reading this on.
We have all shortened our attention spans. Try talking to your friends for 5 minutes straight, and count how many times they look at their phones ready to virtually swipe away your current conversation as it no longer severs their entertainment purposes. Millions of us humans not building up society, not contributing to our local communities, not reading for education, only reading the petty personal drama on others people’s profiles. Or we just end up sitting online waiting for the next big thing to happen so we can be the first to buy it, post, or blog it in your own unprofessional, and uneducated personal review of the topic watched by strangers you think are somehow important to you.
The internet is to technology what the catwalk is to the fashion industry. A cheap domain address purchase and a low-priced webpage is all you need to showcase your art, company, work, or your entire self-existence across the worldwide web. If you don’t feel like paying for or managing your own site, you can simply hop on to one of the many social media platforms like this one introducing yourself to a new broad community. Humans urn for others love and attention it’s in our natural genetic makeup. We are a social animal. Data is controlled to make you feel these necessary emotions are sufficed triggering our own self-worth. We feel more important to these strangers than we actually are, creating an addiction to the idea of being needed and wanted. This allows are brain to reshuffle our personal priorities into our virtual priorities replacing our real loved ones with stranger that like our every post.
This virtual ecosphere develops into numerous individuals’ primary focus. These humans stop wanting to be the real person living in reality interchanging that for their avatar’s cybernetic life. Dependent on likes consistently chasing the dragon for that feeling of that first hit. Taking 1000 selfies before finding the one that will get them the best results. Shallow petty people use logo and brand boasting as the new form of prestige. Showing off items purchased using credit card funds with compiling interest rates as gifts bought from fake cash supplied from the “BOSS LIFE”. This fake attention and fake lifestyle’s devastating our mental health.
Our anthropological brain is a remarkably astonishing organ monitoring the entire human body. From stabilizing and controlling our every step to speaking, seeing, and hearing the cerebrum is the largest part of the brain controlling our emotions, reasoning, and cognitive retention. Our brain processes and interprets information and data received from our brainstem and central nervous system like a computer. Our sight, smell, touch, taste, and hearing help us learn what we like or dislike establishing the fundamentals of our intelligence and personality. Creatively and emotionally our selective memory picks out the fragments that bring us comfort and distress. From this collated data your brain has recognized and created who you are. Our brain is a power thing, but our minds are very delicate.
Our minds are easily changed. Order something to eat after waiting in line confident in your order only to find that item is sold out, and like that you order something else. Influence helps us easily change our mind. Everything around us forced or not influences who we become. Say you’re a kid at a park and all your peers are playing soccer, chances are your going to play soccer with them. As a result, you’ve just ignored sliding, swinging, playing in the sand, spinning on the merry-go-round, or you just using your imagination because you were easily influenced.
This type of influence is happening to all of us today, as we have elected to give these corporations the power to control our data for their increased profits. They understand how primitively fragile your mind is. If the tech world as we know was to end tomorrow and the internet went extinct, what would you have to offer yourself and those around you?