• Patrick McAndrew

When We Don’t See The Internet

The Invisible Internet

Unfortunately, I can’t remember where I read this, but I recently read an article that discussed how the Internet is becoming such a vital part of our lives, that eventually it will be almost invisible. You may say, “The Internet is already somewhat invisible?” But what the article meant was that it will be such an ingrained part of our lives that we will barely even notice it.

In other words, the lines will become much more blurred. Initiatives like virtual reality and augmented reality will make this very possible. In the future, we will have notifications pop up in front of our very eyes without the use of a physical device. Information will not only be at our fingertips, but readily available without us having to even lift a finger. In the future, information will simply pop up when it deems necessary.

Manipulation Times Ten

While this sounds pretty neat and like something out of a science fiction action movie, we mustn’t be so enthusiastic to jump on the high horse. This type of technology holds an immense amount of power and we humans are incredibly vulnerable creatures. We are already being manipulated through our devices and we barely even register it. I can’t imagine what this manipulation will be like in the age of augmented reality, as the Internet becomes more and more a part of our DNA.

This then starts to raise questions with regards to what it means to be human. If we are becoming much more machine-like in our thoughts and behavior, what’s left that still makes us human? In my last post, I discussed how genuine, human relationships are going to become more valuable as time goes on. Some may argue this isn’t the case and that human relationships will become less and less pertinent in a technologically advanced world, but I would have to disagree. It’s part of our making as human beings to connect and interact with one another. Our species builds together and innovates together. In order to continue to progress in the world, we will have to rely on each other.

What It Means To Be Human

“Oh, contrare!” you may say. “Why, with artificial intelligence, anything will be possible, including the creation of new technologies and other…things!” Well my technological friend, while artificial intelligence may be able to do this on some level, at the end of the day it is still artificial. It’s not real. It’s not human emotion.And human emotion is a thousand times more interesting and captivating than something that can be programmed.

Human beings are 100% emotional. And as much as someone may want to program a computer or robot to convey emotions, it won’t be the real thing because it is not a real thing. Humans need each other to rely on. We need to build relationships and friendships in order to be happy in this world. Building robots is a super cool thing and I’m sure it will aid in the future efficiency of our society, but they won’t be a substitute to human companionship.

As the Internet becomes more and more embedded in our lives, we must remember that it is simply a tool; a tool to be more efficient, productive, and increase our international communication. But the Internet should not be seen as a way of life. Though many of us spend a large chunk of our days on the Internet, we must not define it as our life. If we start defining our innate human characteristics as being something projected through our online persona, we won’t be heading in the best direction.

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