Christina Griffin

Rob Cole


11 October 2016

The Generation of Human Robots

From VCRs to online streaming, pagers to smartphones and computers weighing fifty tons to tablets weighing about one pound. Technology continues to increase and so does the demand for newer and better inventions. As time has passed and new generations have been born, a technological barrier has been built. Creating a visible class system: the haves and the have-nots when it comes to understanding and utilizing technology. The advances in communication over the past decade alone have outshined just about all other technical advances over the past century. However, with technology comes change. This change can be good if handled properly. This paper will tackle the idea that technology has warped generations by stripping them of basic human identity and how this shocking fact can be seen as a good thing, focusing on cultural and developmental ways. The comparisons between successive generations are blatant. As generations are introduced to technology more and more means of communication rise therefore molding generations to think, act communicate and feel differently than the generation before them. The younger generations crave the next new thing, and this will only increase. Technology creates new opportunities every day.


This chart shows the basic differences between the most recent generations.

Millenials will be the main focus, considering they have been surrounded by technology since birth. However, the advantages that technology has introduced to the world have their disadvantages. It has made things like bank account hacking, bullying and privacy invasion easier than ever.  The pros and cons list of this tech-involved world is endless, however picturing a world that brings technological advancing to a halt or even slows it down is pretty much inconceivable. In fact, the advantages simply out weigh the disadvantages. Update after update, technology progress will go forth with time.


This states that “the critical stage” of development is from age 2-7. And it is when you are most receptive to learning new things like language etc.

Millennials are more technologically inclined than say someone in the Traditionalist or even the Baby Boomer generation. Growing up with technology is completely different than being introduced to basically all of it in your mid-thirties. In the time period of a Millenials “critical stage” they grew up with advanced technology all around them that they tended to incorporate into basic every day life, as a result they became acclimated to most technology at a very young age making it easier to understand and operate. Younger generations have more advantages than older generations do when it comes to researching and information being at the tip of your fingers, literally. It’s a time gap that created a technological understanding gap. The people that are having trouble acclimating to new and better technology are the people saying technology shouldn’t be placed in school environments. Linnell Charles from Virgina Tech. said that setting, “cross-curricular values” is important in school systems. He stresses that school systems need to accept technology. Furthermore, he quotes “The technology education profession is, and has been, immersed in an on-going change process for almost twenty years.” (2) Charles sheds light to a future that technology will be incorporated in schools properly some day, until then it is his opinion that we should start communicating exactly what technology education is. Limiting technology via taking a more traditional approach to teaching and implementing it is the antithesis of what Charles believes. Shunning technology from schools only sets children of this day in age back. There is no better way to prepare children for the real world than to implement technology in school systems. Either way, the outside world will take its toll in teaching people in different and unconventional ways. It can be done right in the first place if we start it in schools rather than leave it up to the children to learn by themselves. Its not abandoning traditional methods, it is acquiring new and more effective ways shaped for a specific generations learning needs. Without more advances people, especially young people, will not quench their thirst for the knowledge they want from the world.

Children, young adults, and grown people are connected now more than ever. When they aren’t physically in front of one another, their profile pages on social media are displayed for, not just their peers and friends to see. Everyone and anyone who has the ability to type in your full name can see your life up to date. This brings the crucial need for security and privacy to be protected now more than ever. But besides that communication is also dwindling, well at least face to face communication is. Barry A. Farber from Columbia University came to the conclusion that younger people are using more and more technology for means of communication. A survey of 300 adolescents said that texting and face to face communication were the most convenient means to them. (4) Social media can also be a simple out for avoiding awkward or uncomfortable face to face communication. While he shapes specific traits that most Millenials have in common, Farber justifies exactly why Millenials avoid traditional means of communication.(3) Coming to the developed idea that the advancing technologically mediated communication or “TMC” (2) is being accepted by this “new millennium” for a reason. And that reason is that technology is influencing and holds so many possibilities-and younger people want to explore that.


This video shows how communication has changed over time.

In Farbers conclusion he states that “For those who have been ‘born digital’, technology may be experienced not as a means of avoiding intimacy with others, but rather as providing endless opportunities for connection.” (6) This idea supports the fact that generations have molded around technology for the better. Obviously it can not be stated that technology has only good outcomes there are basic disadvantages with knowing everything about everyone. Cyberbullying has become a problem over the past few decades as the social media wave has spread. This has left researchers wondering “What is cyberbullying?” Danielle Law from British Columbia University came to the fact that cyberbullies are social bullies via an online medium. Same sort of bullying just easier to not care about the implications. (2,3) However considering this source as a whole and the knowledge gained prior to reading this, it can be concluded that without technology there would still be bullying in real life. The only real fact is that technology can influence and increase bullying through many portals.

With all the advances in technology we can not forget our human identity. In C.T.A. Schmidts piece titled “Technology and culture and possible vigilance too.”, they bring that exact idea to life. In order to point out how important it is to not abandon personality and human traits, Schmidt hypothetically creates a situation where technology is so advanced that humans are artificially made. Robotics have virtually taken over. All due to technology getting out of hand. An excessive approach, however a valid point. (4)

This can be exlimpified in the 2009 movie- Surrogate.


The world has become 100 percent reliable on surrogacy and technology. The main fear of Schmidts journal article.

Schmidt proposed that for Millenials and Generation X members- “…our environment-rich with technical objects-turns us into artefacts.” (5) Referring to us as the “culture of the artificial” Schmidt believes that it is a cultural evolutionary process to acclimate to technology and he promotes technology with limitations on advancements, to prevent anarchy like humanoid robotics. Schmidt doesn’t want to see the face of humanity disappear all because of technology blinding us from seeing the facts.

Internet addiction is also a real threat in the cyber world and the lose of human identity. Cellphones, email, blogging, Twitter, Tumblr, Facebook and Myspace are just a few social media portals that are updatable 24/7. For Millennials mainly- you could say technology takes up a huge part of their day. Haley Eastman says, “…time spent on new technology and social media sites is increasing immensely, creating less time for real-life interactions. Likewise, there is no doubt that as these numbers continue to rise, face-to-face and verbal communication will continue to decrease and possibly even become a mere trend of the past.”(1) Extreme, yet, a good point. It will be hard to picture a world with no face to face communication however we must be wary of this unforeseen side effect.


This picture captures the idea of how technology has replaced things even over the past 20 years. Just from the 80s to now, television has been replaced with an app- Netflix. Music and computers are now morphed into a cellphone that can do all. And yellow pages is basically an ancient artifact.

According to Aviv, Weinstein, and Michael Lejoyeux, in a sample of Italian adolescents, 36.7 % showed signs of problematic internet usage this can be caused by impulse-control problems. (10) The internet is a way to escape from reality so its hard to see why anyone, especially a person with insecurities wouldn’t want a break from the real world. To escape from their human reality and morph into the computer they are using. Losing themselves in the media they are addicted to looking at. Tim Healy from Santa Clara University hypothesized that, “… the Internet has already had a very significant impact on human life, involving the ways in which [we] meet each other, the ways [we] transact business, the ways [we] share information, and many more. Still, all of this is surely only the small tip of a huge iceberg, which seems very likely to change our lives in ways which we cannot today imagine. We cannot begin to anticipate the consequences of this technology.” (3) Technology has changes basic every day life drastically. It gives people new identities if they wish. “Catfishing” which is when you pretend to be someone else online to meet others is the latest trend that can relate to this. You can look at this as an example of people giving them selves their own technological identity and in turn abandoning their own human identity. This is an illness in itself and as easy as it is to blame technology, the fault truly lies in the hands of the operator.  Healy is saying that the consequences of technology are unforeseen and that gives it a scary unknown vibe, which is true. However, technology isn’t always bad for a generations development, it is simply a different approach and if used properly and not vindictively, it can create amazing things. The advantages simply outweigh the disadvantages.


This clip shows an episode of “Catfish.” A show about how people pretend to be another person online to meet other people. The producers find these “Catfish” and confront them for the people that they meet online. Sometimes they are who they said they were and sometimes they are nothing of the sort. This shows how easy it is to fake identity behind technology. And how easy technology can get out of hand. This opens the doors to how scary the internet can actually be if used improperly, and shouldn’t be taken lightly.

But, if we spend our whole lives scared of the consequences of actions we make, we will never develop as individuals. Nor will we take steps to better the community as a whole. To counter Healys argument of technology being consequential, Keith Hampton wrote an article about human isolation and technology for Information Communication & Amp. In his article Hampton retorts a common belief that human isolation has increased with time and technological inventions. He states that since 1984 social isolation has not increased at all. Therefore, technology is not a immediate threat to isolation. Instead, it is just a new means of communication.(4) Manuel Castells back up with Hampton completely when he says, “…media often report that intense use of the Internet increases the risk of isolation, alienation, and withdrawal from society, but available evidence shows that the Internet neither isolates people nor reduces their sociability; it actually increases sociability, civic engagement, and the intensity of family and friendship relationships, in all cultures.” The internet simply poses a new way to communicate, misunderstood by people who favor the more traditional views of face-to-face communication. Technology doesn’t take away communication it enhances it. The one fact the everyone must get behind to make technology understood as an advantage rather than a disadvantage for civilization is simple… Change is good.

Along with technological changes to increase means of communication, technology has also opened new doors for creative jobs provided for this coming generation in all cultures.

This is a chart to show how old jobs can be reformed into new, more innovative jobs.


All types of creative jobs have emerged. Marketing opens a whole new platform online. Its no longer just billboards and radio commercials. Now a corporation can reach you virtually anywhere- online, text message ads, and around campus. There is virtually no way to escape the marketing world. This brings opportunity for new, fresh and inventive minds to come up with good ideas to reach the public. And with all the means of communication now the ideas are limitless.

Generations succumb to the environment they are surrounded by. That is basic cause and effect logic. If you give a group of people basically limitless access to knowledge in the world, it will eventually make an creative information-hungry society. This is what has happened to the latest generation. All for the better in the long run. Even though technology has the capability to “strip” humans of identity, this come with the territory and online portals simply influence this. But the advantages of being able to communicate with most of the world in a matter of seconds obviously will come with its disadvantages. It is up to us to decide whether these disadvantages are worth it. In short they are. Technology and advancing innovations regarding technology has lately opened doors for generations unimagined before now. New means of communication, advanced school systems, higher knowledge capacity, and innovative jobs are just a few things that technology has created in such a short period of time.

Really, it comes down to the person that is in control of the technology. Humans make mistakes, and no one is perfect. The disadvantages of technology are solely to blame on how humans handle and use it. Will these disadvantages ever come to a stop? We can’t tell yes or no. But the tremendous advantages that technology could have on developing generations to come are just worth that risk.

Annotated Bibliography


Schmidt, C. T. A. “Technology and Culture and Possibly Vigilance Too.”Ai &Amp; Society, vol. 26, no. 4, 2011, pp. 371–375.

The author realizes that communication has slowly but surly been replaced with technology. Referring to culture today as the “culture of the artificial” Schmidt, believes that it is a cultural evolutionary process. Hypothetically speaking Schmidt describes a would where humans are artificially made and humanoid robotics are taking over, in turn I believe, to make a dramatic point in how important human identity is. Basically, don’t let technology take over your life. Touching both sides of the argument, Schmidt also gives light to reasons to consider “greater human diversity”. “Today it is clear that a certain number of values are perceived by at least some people as lost.”   I will use this source in my favor in my essay. Schmidt shares similar views with me. Even though the point of this paper is that tech shouldn’t take over humanity, it sticks with the notion that technology holds great benefits to humans however too much can lead to bad. Where in my essay I go into how technology especially for the millennial has taken over and we much be cautious.

Linnell, Charles. “Focus on Communication and Collaboration: Suggestions for Implementing Change in the 21st Century.” JOTS The Journal of Technology Studies, vol. 27, no. 1, 2001.

Linnells paper is about suggestions for implementing technological changes in school systems k-12 in the 21st century. He believes there will be two challenges to overcome- 1) communicating exactly what technology education is and what technology educators do and 2) to prepare technology educators in different school settings. Setting “Crossciricular values” as a very achievable point in education, Linnell stresses ways that school can be used to integrate technology opportunities.

“The technology education profession is , and has been, immersed in an ongoing change process for almost 20 years.”

Linnell believes it all starts with the teachers and the main problem is that the teachers dint always know what they are teaching. This supports my essay because I am pro-advancing in technology throughout schools and generations.

Weinstein, Aviv, and Michel Lejoyeux. “Internet Addiction or Excessive Internet Use.” The American Journal of Drug and Alcohol Abuse, vol. 36, no. 5, 2010, pp. 277–283.

Aviv, Weinstein and Lejoyeux collaborated ideas and view points to come to a conclusion about various types of internet addiction. This piece goes well with my essay because I believe that- for millenials mainly- technology has taken over basic everyday life. Not to confuse my stance to be something against the progression of technology, I am using this piece to highlight the exceptions to when people can become addicted to technology which obviously would be a bad thing and not progressive in any way. The Authors believe that the internet is a way to escape from ones self and become something else momentarily, which in my opinion is too true. Also that Internet addiction is a impulse-control issue within the person. I will utilize this quote: The internet may also be used as a forum for expanding social networks, consequently, enhancing the chance foe meaningful relationships, self confidence and social abilities.” However I will question it and incorporate an idea from my first source. Is that quote accurate? Or is it the contrary? Is it an artificial relationship over online?

Farber, Barry A. et al. “Children, Technology, Problems, and Preferences.”Journal of Clinical Psychology, vol. 68, no. 11, 2012, pp. 1225–1229.

These Columbia University professors collaborated their views on the roles technology plays in the development of children and young adults. Having the millenials as their study group, they recognize every thought provoking trait of the common millennial. Younger people are increasingly using more various forms of technology to communicate . This to other generations will be seen as a problem but to those who are participating it is natural. They grew up with it. This is my favorite source because it has many statistics and it really supports my ideas that technology has had serious affect on generations progressively.

Law, Danielle M. et al. “The Changing Face of Bullying: An Empirical Comparison between Traditional and Internet Bullying and Victimization.”Computers in Human Behavior, vol. 28, no. 1, 2012, pp. 226–232. doi:10.1016/j.chb.2011.09.004.

This piece is written by Danielle Law, wondering what the difference between cyberbullying and social bullying is she comes to the conclusion that cyberbullying is in fact social bullying via a online medium. She believes we have just scratched the surface of how internet and technology effects adolescent communication skills. Comparing Offline bullying and online bullying, she found through 2 studies that they are different. I will use this piece to give light to the negatives of my view point, which every research paper should do. Law believes in a prevention/ interventional method to dealing with such issues.

Hampton, Keith N. et al. “Core Networks, Social Isolation, And New Media.”Information, Communication &Amp; Society, vol. 14, no. 1, 2011, pp. 130–155. doi:10.1080/1369118x.2010.513417.

Keith Hampton suggests that there is a common misunderstanding that the basic cause of human isolation is the advances in technology over the past few decades. Hampton challenges this finding with his own that in fact isolation has not increased at all since 1985. This supports my idea that technology isn’t bad for the future. I will use this source to counter “The Unanticipated Consequences of Technology”. The only thing expanding is social networking which in turn is a good thing for the world. Hampton believes in the progress of technology and that it will brighten the future. This source back my stance up perfectly.

Fling, S. et al. “Videogames, Aggression, And Self-Esteem: A Survey.” Social Behavior and Personality: an International Journal Soc Behav Pers, vol. 20, no. 1, Jan. 1992, pp. 39–45. doi:10.2224/sbp.1992.20.1.39.

Fling states clearly in his paper through evidence of many different studies that violent videogames leads to more aggressive people. Studying many children and young teens fling refers to many studies  that find this true. Boys and violent videogames aare more aggressive than girls and violent video games. He believes that aggression and amount of videogames played is strongly correlated. I will utilize this piece to show how certain aspects of technology can hurt more than help. And technology should be utilized in better ways.

Healy, Tim. “The Unanticipated Consequences of Technology.” Markkula Center for Applied Ethics, 6 Apr. 2005, https://www.scu.edu/ethics/focus-areas/more/technology-ethics/technology-ethics-resources//the-unanticipated-consequences-of-technology/.

Tim Healy from Santa Clara University begins by defining basic terms that may be misunderstood in day to day life. He describes the consequences that comes with technology. He goes into how technology can have unforeseen consequences. I will rebuttal this by looking at it in the exact opposite way. The unforeseen advantages. He relates all of this to how individual’s actions cause consequences.


Eastman, Hayley. “Communication Changes with Technology, Social Media.” The Daily Universe, 2  Dec. 2014, universe.byu.edu/2013/07/07/1communication-changes-with-technology-social-media/.

Haley Eastman battles the topic of how social media is forever changing there for we are expected to change with it communicating in different ways as it continues to change. Learning new and better means of communication along the way. She touches the idea that verbal communication has obviously dwindled however technological communication makes up for it. Verbal has been replaced with technological basically. Phones are the most convenient form of communication especially because a phone is now basically a computer also. “time spent on new technology and social media sites is increasing immensely, creating less time for real-life interactions. Likewise, there is no doubt that as these numbers continue to rise, face-to-face and verbal communication will continue to decrease and possibly even become a mere trend of the past.” We must be wary of this side effect of increasing technologic advances.

Ramey, Karehka. “Use of Technology in Communication – Use of Technology.” Use of Technology, 18 Mar. 2014, http://www.useoftechnology.com/technology-communication/.

Ramey states that communication through technology is a necessity today. Through business to everyday life technology is extremely prominent in communicating. Text messaging, social networking platforms, email, business skyping and may more portals of communication overpower the traditional face to face. And ongoing theme of showing how face to face communication is just out of date. Of course it is still essential to communicate in person with people however but the bottom line is it is better and easier to communicate now a days through these portals to people that aren’t immediately in front of you.

Castells, Manuel. “The Impact of the Internet on Society: A Global Perspective.” MIT Technology Review, 8 Sept. 2014, http://www.technologyreview.com/s/530566/the-impact-of-the-internet-on-society-a-global-perspective/.

Manuel believes that communication today is better than ever. People are connected in so many ways. Everything including marketing has taken technology to its full advantage. The available information out there is unreal and its all thanks to the advancing technological wave. I will use this source to go along with Tim Healy as well.

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Source: eportfolio

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