Society

Double-edged

The technological developments have brought in their wake many new problems thereby proving to be a boon and bane at the same time.

The technological developments have brought in their wake many new problems thereby proving to be a boon and bane at the same time.  

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Though technological developments are a boon, we need to accept their side-effects too

The world has changed at an amazing pace due to constant and amazing growth of technology. Changes in communications, especially in the sphere of the Internet and social networking sites have brought people separated by vast distances closer and transformed the world into a global village. Living locally and thinking globally is the norm nowadays.

The technological developments have brought in their wake many new problems, thereby proving to be a boon and bane at the same time. I experienced this first hand when I went on a family holiday to Gangtok and Kalimpong. Wanting to capture the beauty of the two places and cherish the moments with my family, I bought a Canon SLR 1100 camera and attended the complimentary workshop to know the basics of photography.

During the three-day stay at Gangtok we visited almost all the tourist attractions there, including the Tsongo Lake located at an altitude of 12400 feet bordering China. The camera worked wonders as I was able to capture some beautiful pictures with stunning clarity.

At Kalimpong, West Bengal we went paragliding which was a lifetime experience. I took many snaps of my children doing paragliding and shot a video with a wide angle camera. I took pride in the pictures which turned out be nice and felt that I had mastered the art of photography! The organisers downloaded the live video and copied it on a CD and asked for a storage device to copy it as a matter of precaution. Unable to furnish him a device, I removed the 8 GB storage device of the camera on which he copied the video.

From here started my troubles, namely virus attack. Clicking some more pictures at another location I was unable to view the nearly 700 pictures taken at Gangtok. Despite the fact that these were on CD, I was gripped by a sense of restlessness and became desperate to check the CD. Rushing to an Internet café I was stunned and dismayed when there was nothing on the CD and SLR storage device. All my enthusiasm quickly evaporated and disquiet, anxiety and alarm seized me. Greatly worried how to recover the video and pictures, I informed the person who had copied them and requested him to come immediately along with the laptop used for copying. Meanwhile, I approached another computer centre and requested them to help in recovering the lost video and pictures. They failed after trying for nearly two hours. The person at the paragliding venue arrived and the moment he inserted the storage device on his laptop, the pictures were visible. Breathing a sigh of relief, I immediately bought a pen drive, copied all the pictures and got the virus removed. Adhering to once bitten, twice shy, I made a copy on another CD. Sensing divine intervention, I thanked the Almighty.

The immense benefits of technology have also brought new problems. We are all aware of the malicious and dangerous computer virus/worms like “I Love You”, “My Doom”, “Sobig.F”, etc. which have created global havoc causing loss of billions of rupees. Also, hostile countries are waging cyber warfare, hacking official government sites. Equally common is the hacking of email accounts, leading to illegal access to banks, credit card details and invading individual privacy. Technical glitches, incompatibility issues, slow Internet connectivity due to heavy traffic, drive us against the wall.

From time immemorial technology brings benefits and unknown ill effects also the classic example of that being electricity which lights up life and can snatch it too.

Similar is the case of computers and communication technology which bring comfort with hidden perils.

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Printable version | Jan 27, 2020 2:47:32 PM | https://www.thehindu.com/features/metroplus/society/doubleedged/article6578222.ece

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