Friday, March 4, 2011

Technology and the Breakdown in Human Interaction—Take II

By Julie Tangen
Technology brings us together in so many ways, but from a social standpoint, what are the repercussions of its advances? Do gadgets, like iPhones, shut out the world around us and are we on the verge of a breakdown in human interaction? I posed this in a blog a few years back.

Since then I’ve come to realize how powerful technology can be for deepening relationships. Thanks to my iPhone I can watch my little nephew take his first steps via video chat. I can check in with family members more frequently via text. I’m able to respond to client and editor requests quickly, no matter where I am. My iPhone has also helped to expand my business and social network. For instance when I meet someone out and about I can immediately connect through Facebook or LinkedIn and start developing a friendship with that person, where as five or ten years ago their business card might have been filed away in my rolodex with other interesting people I’ve met along the way.

I’m typing this while waiting for my latte, by the way. Am I missing an opportunity to chat with the person in line next to me because I’m so focused on my iPhone? Maybe. But I’ve been able to create more meaningful friendships with the people who make my coffee because we’re now connected through Facebook.

Do you find that your iPhone/iPad/gadget opens you up to new people and experiences?

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