The arrival of the smartphone in our lives has changed us, no doubt.We have in our hand a microcomputerwhich allows us at all times to communicate, inform us, carry out processes and procedures that used to take us hours in a matter of seconds and even work.
To such an extent comes the adoration for the functions that it offers us thatsome would even be willing to implant a chip in their bodyto have, even more quickly and naturally, many of these functions. In this regard, the study ‘And after smartphones, what? Citizen Cyborg ‘, carried out by Línea Directa, reveals that up to 20% of Spaniards would be willing to do what some would call true barbarity.
A chip in your body, for what?
Among the main functions of the smartphone that would supply the chip, respondents highlightthose of storing thousands of data, having an integrated vision camera or having a GPS. However, there are also important reluctance, due to the possible health problems derived from carrying a foreign body in the body itself, the fact of having to transfer data from your personal life to third parties or the possibility of not being able to disconnect digitally. On the other hand, the fact of always being traceable and not having to carry physical devices are the advantages preferred by the study participants.
Another of the main conclusions suggests that el 32% of Spaniards would be willing for companies to monitor their habits, if this brings you benefits in the form of discounts on the products and services of that company.
But, without a doubt, the most worrisome of the results of the study isthe dependence we have on the smartphone. So,21% say they feel anxiety if they don’t carry it onand 30% fail to do anything for more than an hour without looking at the phone. The most serious thing is that almost half of the respondents (46%) admit that they have lost cognitive ability since they have mobile phones and 2 out of 3 say that their addiction affects their personal relationships.
Is our relationship with technology healthy?
All this data leads many to wonder if our relationship with technology will not be getting out of hand. We have chatted withMariano Urraco, sociologist and professor of the UDIMA, co-author of ‘Of slaves and robots and slaves: transmedia landscapes‘(Catarata, 2019), who lowers the alarm by pointing out that “every historical moment has its technology, which is developed and used by people to solve the different problems they encounter.”
It is true that the human being tends to believe himself unique and that the era he is living is really particular in the historical line, but Urraco warns that “we should not get carried away by all the visions of contemporary technology as if they were something radically different from what previous whenthey are nothing but progressive evolutions“That is to say, one more sequence in the development of humanity. Thus, to the question we were asking, the sociologist’s answer is clear:” One could not speak of the fact that technology is getting out of hand. Perhaps, we are the ones who are letting go of certain handles (moral, mostly) in our relationship with technology. “
Is more functions synonymous with greater control?
Every step that technology takes, suspicions increase as to whether or not the bottom line of the issue lies in obtaining greater control of information and data. And some renowned cases, such as Cambridge Analytica, do not help in any way to be otherwise. However, in this regard, Urraco denies the major. While it is true that there is a tendency “to have a negative vision, associating technological evolution with higher levels of control or loss of individual freedoms,”does not have a direct relationship, but rather “it will only depend on the use that human beings themselves make of the technological devices that are being developed”.
In this sense, the sociologist emphasizes that we cannot forget that we, the human beings, have the power, becausetechnology “is not an agent of its own accord”. In other words, “it is people’s decisions that shape technological uses, and we should not start from the premise that people are stupid, but rather that we should analyze their actions from the perspective of rationality,” he argues.
We do not know if we will really live as ‘cyborg citizens’, but what is unquestionable is that technological development will not stop, and we will have to continue doing “cost-benefit calculation“Well, not all of us prevail in the same way” the ubiquitous connectivity or the need to be permanently localizable; they are individual calculations that, as such, cannot be subjected to a summary trial that encompasses the diverse group of humanity, “concludes Urraco.