Throughout history, technology has been developed to improve our lives, make the labour-intensive tasks much less labour-intensive, and provide us with opportunities to focus on developing this technology further, as opposed to toiling away in the fields, mines, or warehouses sixteen hours a day.
Technology has allowed us to improve our efficiency. When you look at previous centuries, progress seems slow. In the 20th Century, we transformed from horse-drawn carriages to motor vehicles to discovering the secret to aviation to leaving the Earth’s atmosphere within just over 60 years. Now, we are looking more futuristic than ever. Autonomous cars, AI, the Internet of Things, and more are all examples of technology’s influence on our progression.
Furthermore, it has made even the banal and simple tasks so much easier. Factors that you might not consider, that you might take for granted, have given us the chance to complete so many tasks in one day that previously could have taken a week. However, that is not to say that technology’s influence is all positive. There are also cases where we have allowed tech to consume us and dominate our lives.
Everybody wants to be more productive. We look at our jobs for the day and lament that they will take far, far, too long. This delivers a massive hit to our motivation, and we are lucky if we get anything done at all.
However, tech’s streamlining of everyday tasks has made this process that much more manageable. From simple things like driving to the post office to more complex but necessary projects or duties like working out taxes or payrolls and other financial aspects have become a lot more than just a man and a calculator fretting over a missing ten cents.
However, as much as tech may have improved the productivity when it comes to our jobs, it also has the potential to hinder our productivity. The allure of social media always itches at our fingertips, and some of us can’t seem to be separated from our devices for more than just a few minutes before checking for any updates.
While it might seem harmless just to check in on the group chat every once in a while, you can quickly find yourself stuck down a rabbit hole of memes, gifs, and those awful online quizzes that determine which kind of Disney furniture you might be.
The Industrial Revolution was perhaps the start of our love affair with technology, but this reliance on steam-powered trains and coal-fuelled machinery has had its consequences on the environment. While we might have taken some time to recognise these effects, there is not a massive emphasis on sustainability.
We were obsessed with the act of manufacturing. If something broke, just make a new one, etc. etc. But this has damaged the planet, and so the more sustainable you are now, the better. It used to be a challenge to reuse and recycle and worn down item or product. However, with technology now solely dedicated to making something new from something old, the promise of renewable energy is coming to fruition.
Companies are investing in solutions to eliminate our carbon footprints. They are seeking ways to cut down on energy usage and even find methods to make that used energy usable again. This practice is essentially at the forefront of technology’s effect on efficiency. More energy efficient products are being designed and developed every day, and it might not be long before you find your home, your office, and your car filled with this kind of tech for a better tomorrow.
The days of not hearing from friends or family for weeks and months on end if you were travelling or out of the country have been well and truly eliminated. But it is not just keeping in touch that that technology has helped us with.
Communication in all aspects of life has been vastly improved efficiency-wise due to technology. While in the past, you would need to wait for Dave or Debra to come into the office to ask them a question, we are now so connected in all facets of our lives that we can get the answer to any question at the tap of a screen or touch of a button.
However, this has caused issues for some people. Despite the convenience of social media allowing us to be contacted anytime and anywhere, some people are (quite rightly) opposed to being asked to do work when not on the clock. The always-on culture of the modern workplace has caused burnout and anxiety among many employees, with managers insisting they get this and that completed, even on weekends.
While trading does not apply to everybody, there are still many companies and individuals that engage in it either as the profession or merely to make some money on the side. It used to be that any one person would need to scour the markets daily, which made any sort of further occupation almost impossible.
However, as with many things in life, technology has revolutionised this process. Algorithms and platforms, such as Algo Terminal, have taken this task away from the person and instead entrusted it to the machine.
Through code and programming, what was once a task for the many has now become the sole responsibility of a single computer, completing analysis of markets and any drops or rises in mere seconds. This is something that would have taken a person hours and potentially days and therefore speeds up the process and allows you to sit back and concentrate on other endeavours you might want to explore.
Efficiency in all parts of our lives is essential towards being as successful as we can. Many people will claim that they got lucky when it came to their success but we all know that you have to work hard to get anywhere in life.
While technology has provided us with the opportunity to be more efficient than ever, it is not something we should take for granted. Just because we have computers and machines to do the heavy lifting and thinking for us, it should not come at the cost of our drive and determination.
Allowing ourselves to become complacent will undo all of the hard work that came before us and leave us feeling unsure of what to do next should we find ourselves at a crossroads.