TECHlab: Computers [P13]

Whoa.  This documentary, The Machine that Changed the World, was pretty informative.  It’s mind-blowing how amazingly smart and talented these people were who invented such a machine that changed our world.

But what if that had never happened?  It’s hard to think about a world without computers.  Computers control almost everything we take for granted these days.  We wouldn’t be anywhere near where we are in terms of technology without them.  So while I can try to imagine a world where computers never came to be, I’m sure I will leave certain, very important things out…

In my daily life, I wake up because of the alarm on my phone.  That wouldn’t be possible without computers.  So I’d probably wake up like I would if I’d grown up in a rural area — by the crowing of a rooster, or by intense sunlight peering through my windows.  I do know that humans create a natural chemical called melatonin that regulates our sleep patterns.  Melatonin is excreted in our bodies when our eyes no longer see bright light.  Sure, we’d still have electricity to keep lights on, probably delaying this process somewhat, but not nearly to the effect we experience now.  The light that our eyes take in from our computers, cell phones, and televisions late at night are technically what keeps us up longer.  Therefore, without them, our melatonin excretion process would work better, keeping our sleep cycles in check.  So who knows, maybe I wouldn’t even need my cell phone’s alarm clock in the morning.

I certainly wouldn’t be able to make my coffee the way I do either because I don’t own a French press, nor do I know how to make coffee on a hot stove; I own a coffee maker, which uses some form of computer system to be able to work its magic.  I guess I’d learn… Or maybe, since my sleep cycle would be in check, I wouldn’t need coffee at all!

I definitely couldn’t open my laptop, go online, and check in with my summer courses, that’s for sure.  So in a world without computers, we’d basically be living as though it were the 1800s, or the early 1900s.  After all, computers were initially made to compute numbers more efficiently, not to live and breathe.  Of course it’s possible, but being born in the 80s, and raised in the 90s, with even the most basic computers, it has become a part of my life that I cannot imagine living without for an extended period of time.  Not to mention the effect it’d have on the whole world.  Most of the things we can do are because of the invention of the computer.

It might be a nice change though, to live without them… But we’ll never know.  Because even if all the computers in the world crashed at once, and we had to live without them, our world would be in chaos.  So it seems to be one of those things that once you do, you cannot undo, so to speak.

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By anabhani

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