Kristi Porter University
Advances in Technology In the 21st century, advances in technology have had a profound effect on our everyday lives. Past advances, like electricity for example, have forced mankind to this point, where now we are made to wonder where this new technology will lead. Some of these advances have been around for more than a century, while others are on the realm of being applied to everyday life. However, one must question whether or not civilization has fully explored the potential dangers of our modern technology. People could lead a safer and more natural existence without many of the advances in our world. A lot of advances in technology are extremely dangerous to people and the atmosphere. For example, exposure to radiation kills living organisms. Whether it’s ionizing (x-rays) or non-ionizing (radio waves), they still can be harmful to humans and the Earth’s atmosphere. We cannot control the sun but, we can control what types of radiation producing machines we use and build. Weighing the balance of the benefits and risks of each new discovery, along with progress and advantages, is a grave responsibility. Insights into certain technological advances are here discussed, such as the aspects of wireless, laser and medical technology.
Wireless advances in today’s hi-tech world are on the rise. Firstly, almost everyone in the world owns, or has owned, a cellular phone. Cell phones can be used in an emergency to dial 911, or to locate a missing person through the GPS locator. Conversely, when cell phones, and especially smart phones are misused during driving, they can lead to fatal accidents and injuries due to distraction. Research on cell phones being linked to tumors and cancer of the brain are inconclusive at this time. This may be because it’s hard to study people that have passed away and the increase of cell phone users over a period of time have yet to be recorded. The only significant finding so far is that after talking on a cell phone for about an hour the brain shows signs that side the brain tissue metabolizing more glucose than the other. The human body can absorb this negative energy and as technology increases, so does the radio wave towers. It’s just a matter of time until we know the full extent of damage and harm that is going to be passed down to a new generation of young people. Secondly, having a wireless Internet connection is the latest trend, known as WiFi. The convenience of an internet connection can save a user untold amounts of time and money with useful applications like online bill pay and e-stores. On the other hand, humans are becoming overly-reliant, even addicted, to games and social networking, which can ironically result in anti-social behavior and a negligent attitude with regard to everyday responsibilities. Spending time with friends and family often gets placed on the back burner, along with exercise and, too often, sleep. Looking ahead to the future of wireless inventions is a company called WiTricity. “WiTricity, a company spun off from research at the Massachusetts Institute of Technology (MIT), aims to redefine how people use energy, making it possible to power devices without ever plugging them into an outlet. In WiTricity's lab, various devices run on power transmitted via electric coils through the air” (Ferguson, 2012). There are so many wonderful benefits of going wireless; no more batteries, decrease in accidental electrocutions and spontaneous house fires from faulty wiring. The possibilities of having electric cars that don’t pollute the atmosphere and use up fossil fuels are wonderful ideas. Another perspective, that needs to be explored before leaping in that direction, are the unknown health risks with continuous exposure to energy waves. People may wonder about the electromagnetic radiation that could affect humans. Giler’s response on how safe WiTricity products are, "Our technology