An unintended implication of the spread of handheld technologies is the diversion of attention from the real world to the screen. The photograph above nicely illustrates this electronic dependency which has taken a hold over the last decade.
I was recently in Florida with a party of school aged children visiting the Kennedy Space Center and driving out to Cape Canaveral I spotted a range of raptors, a very large snake, which I took to be a non native python, a raccoon, an alligator and a porcupine… all of which I pointed out to the students from England. Their collective response was the non-verbal “whatever” as they gazed fixedly at their screens deep in electronic chat or game playing.
I see this phenomena in the mornings with mums walking children to school, too engrossed in their texting to even answer their children’s calls for attention or questions.
Socially, I am sure this electronic dependency will have a negative impact on our social health. When people find the electronic more interesting than engaging in the real and sensory world around them then we have the recipe for dystopia.
Having said that, I am not entirely innocent as this blog, my Pavlov’s Dog reactions to political posts on Facebook and my ability to get absorbed in information mining when I have real world responsibilities and engagements to attend to!
I wonder, at the end of the world, what the final tweet will be… “alas, as Armageddon envelops me, I’ll never experience the smooth contours of the i-phone 17.”