Are We Too Overdependent On Computers Philosophy Essay

Computer is a relatively new invention. Computers were invented about fifty years ago. However they came in extensive use some thirty years back. Personal Computers were put in use some times in the year 1980. In this short spell of time computers made tremendous impact on our lives. We are now so much dependent on computers that life without computers can not be imagined. Imagine the amount of chaos that would occur if Railway Ticket Booking, Air Booking, Banking computers fails or they are removed worldwide.

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Time is collapsing. Distance is no longer an obstacle. Crossing oceans takes only a minute by a single mouse click. Computers and internet are the one of the evolved technological revolution in the 21st century. By using computers, we can make or work out most of difficult things which are hardly completed without their hands. The presence of increasingly sophisticated internet technology has changed human lifestyle and the demands on human competence.

The following paper discussed the different arguments about the computer dependency in our daily life. Starting from the brief introduction about the uses, advantages and disadvantages of the computers and technology, the paper leads towards the discussion about the arguments on computer dependency. At the end I have summarized the point of views of my friends and colleagues about the same question then I have given my conclusion from the overall study.


Fun, relaxation, communication tools can you get all that with only one tool? The answer is yes. What is the name of that magical instrument? Technology’s greatest innovation in recent past and those are computers. Computer is regarded as an unbelievable intellectual tool in our society. It plays a vital role in our everyday life and gives the workplace, education, entertainment, healthcare and communication a complete new form. In addition it helps us to do our work more efficiently and more professionally than ever before. They are exclusive equipment that performs three main tasks: accept user inputs, processes it according to prescribed rules and produce a result as output in the way which user requires.

aa‚¬A“In the 1980s, computers began to take up new roles in different forms. A simple computer could be a cash machine in a supermarket, which does not look like a traditional one. In the past two decades, the price of components used for computers steadily fell due to higher technological advancement, reduced cost of manufacturing, stiffer competition, entrance of more manufacturers, new usage that simplified many processes, greater market demand and inevitability to higher productivity. And the trend of the usage of computer is changing quickly, from governmental to societal. Till now, the beginning of the 21st century, computers are becoming more powerful and functional and much closer to our daily life.aa‚¬? [1]


The aim of this report is to find out the relationship between people’s life and computer and to see how much we are dependent on computers in our daily life?

Use of computers

Nowadays, we cannot imagine our life without computers and the fact is that they have become so important that nothing can replace them. They seem to be everywhere today. Since 1948 when the first real computer has been invented our life has changed so much that we can call it real digital revolution [2] . Our lives have changed to a great extent because of developments in Information technology. Many of our traditional practices have also transformed because of computers. Things that were only dreamed of in the past are now possible due to computers. If one day all the computer systems were to stop working, we would have huge problems1.

In the past, computers were different from today’s ones. They were so huge that they occupied whole rooms or buildings being comparatively slow in processing data. They were not faster than current simple calculators. Nowadays they are also used by scientist and they may also be as huge as the old ones but they are million times faster. They can execute many multiple operations simultaneously and scientist practically cannot perform without them. Now people have access to massive amount of information. Gathering and collecting data has never been simpler than now. They are not only used in laboratories but also in factories to control production. Sometimes it is computers who manufacture other computers2. This is known as computer aided manufacturing (CAM) and computer aided designs (CAD).

But not only in science and industry computers are being used. Thanks to them modern medicine and health science can diagnose diseases faster and more comprehensively. Also in banking system computers have become common. They control ATMs, all data is stored on special hard disks and paper is not used in accountancy any more. Furthermore, architects, designers and engineers cannot imagine their work without computers. This machines are really everywhere and we rely on them also in such fields as criminology. They help police to solve crimes and collect evidence.

Moreover, computers are wide-spread in education. Use of technology is woven into an almost daily educational discourse and debate. It is relatively easy to forget that computer use in education is a relatively new phenomenon that has evolved to widespread use only within the last 20 years. Teachers began to have more control over classroom with the help of technology in-use with the introduction of the first microcomputers in 1997 according to Roblyer and Edwards (2000) [3] . Except their classic tasks such as administration and accountancy they are used in process of learning. Firstly, they store huge amount of data which helps students to gain information. Secondly, thanks to special teaching techniques and programs they improve skills of concentration and adaptation of knowledge. They have become so popular and in use that not knowing how to use those means to be illiterate.

Advantages of Computers

Out of many some of the advantages of computer in our daily life are as follows:

Computers saves storage place. Imagine how much paper would have to be used, how many trees would have to be cut just to store information which is today on hard disks. Data stored on just one CD in paper form would use room of dozens square meters and would weight thousands of kilos. Nowadays techniques of converting data from paper to digital form have also terrifically developed. You can simply rewrite the text using a keyboard. If you are not good at it you can use a scanner to scan necessary documents. At least there are special devices which can transfer our voice into text.

Thanks to computers; banks, private and government companies, libraries, and many other institutions can save millions of square meters in terms of space and billions of dollars in terms of money.

Nowadays we have access to billions of pieces of information and due to the computer’s capabilities we actually do not need to worry not only how to store them but also how to process them.

Computers can calculate and process information faster and more accurate than human.

Computers improve our lives. They are very useful in office work, we can write text such as reports and analysis. Compared with old typewriters when using computers we don’t have to worry about making mistakes in typewriting because special programs help as to avoid them and we can change them any time. When the text is finished we can print it in as many copies as we want.

At least but not at last, we can communicate with whole world very fast and cheap using Internet.

Computers are user-friendly. We can watch videos and listen to the music having only PC. We don’t need video player, TV and stacking hi-fi any more.

Furthermore, we don’t have to buy PC’s which can take much room due to their other necessary components and wires. We can always buy laptop or palm top which is even smaller, and use them outside anywhere we want.

Of course except these excellent features there is also dark side of computer technology because every invention brings us not only benefits but also threats.

Disadvantages of Computers

Sitting in front of a computer for long has adverse effects. Radiation from the screen affects the eyes, making it difficult to identify objects in high resolution. A magnetic field, generated by computers, also harms the brain; therefore resulting in jumbled thoughts or memories. A common symptom of computers’ adverse effects is restless sleeping. When using a computer, the brain is constantly moving like a water turbine. Therefore, after prolonged use, the eyes are strained, the brain is on maximum is still expecting more work and so results in kicking and turning while sleeping.

Health is not the only ‘individual’ to be devastated by prolonged computer usage; relationships are also hit hard too. Computer users, who work on the computer for long periods of time, create less time for interaction with their society. The advent of social networking sites might be seen as a solution to that problem, but “face to face” interactions are beneficial once in a while.

Over-dependence on computers creates room for laziness too. People tend to disregard learning to do some things the manual way. Thus, a computer break-down would leave them helpless until the computer is repaired.

Violence and sex. The main threats to younger users of computers are internet pornography and bloody games. The presence of sexual content or level of violence should be properly marked and parents are obliged to draw their attention to this issue. There are many extremely bloody games such as “grand theft auto”, “quake” etc. For example, in GTA you are a member of mafia and to promote in crime hierarchy you should kidnap people, steal cars, robe banks etc. As a bonus you can also run over pedestrians. There are also many games in which you are a soldier and your mission is to kill as many enemies as possible. The other threat to our children is internet pornography. The availability of sexual content is enormous and you can do practically nothing to protect your child, especially when it’s interested in this matter.

The other threat is that you can be a computer addict. If you spend most of your free time using computer you should go to see a psychologist.

Arguments about Computer dependency

Since their invention, people far and wide have become increasingly dependent on computers. Computers have found their way into just about every aspect of our lives, and in most cases, they make things easier for us [4] . They allow us to work from home, socialize with our friends and family who live too far away to visit, and they provide an ever-welcome stress relief when we come home from school or work and just want to have some fun. But as we increasingly rely on computers to get through the day, the question begs to be asked: have we become too dependent on computers?

Despite the many benefits of computers, there are also a number of arguments against them, one of which is the negative effect some believe they are having on children’s education.

Illiteracy is a growing issue, and many say that computers are to blame. In the past few years, many teachers have taken to shuffling their students off to a computer to type out short, quick assignments that could easily be written out by hand. While this isn’t much of an issue for older students, it is an issue for the younger students who are just learning to read and write.

Regardless of how much we’re coming to rely on computers, printing and handwriting are a necessary skill to have. But typing out assignments has an effect on more than just the ability to print4. It can also negatively impact their spelling and grammar. While most programs now have spell- and grammar-check, they are not infallible; they cannot differentiate between homonyms and will often times suggest corrections that are not, in fact, correct.

Furthermore, information is often more easily and accurately remembered when children have to spend a little time writing it out by hand, rather than a few quick minutes typing away at a keyboard. Because of these factors, computers in school should be reserved for older students, longer assignments, or classes which specifically teach how to use a computer.

Another case against computers crops up when a person’s interest in computers goes too far and becomes an obsession. Computers make our lives easier and give us new ways to learn about the things we’re interested in. They make it possible to do many things from the comfort of our own home. We can shop online, keep in touch with our friends online, even go to school online. They make it easier to record and organize information and entertain us with a nearly endless variety of games.

However, it’s still important to maintain a life outside of the cyber world; a life spent attached to a computer screen isn’t a real life. When a computer becomes the central point of a person’s life, they undergo a change in behavior; they become lazy and develop anti-social tendencies, and, in some severe cases, simply cannot function without a computer.

It’s a common thing to see with children who have been allowed to spend too much time on the computer, watching TV, or playing video games: when it comes time to walk away, they throw temper tantrums. But it’s not just a matter of behavioral changes, when a person can’t tear themselves away from the screen long enough to take part in any other activity, it can take a toll on their comfort and health. They may experience weight gain, strained eyes, and headaches, among other unpleasant side-effects. However, it can also be argued that this is not the fault of the computer, but rather the fault of the person [5] .

Perhaps the most convincing argument, however, is the issue of safety. Aside from the issue of sharing personal information such as full names and addresses, there is also the bigger issue of stolen personal information. As our dependence on computers grows, so does our comfort level with them, and we are more likely to save personal information to our computer. While it would be nice to think that it is always perfectly safe to do so, the fact is that there are people who have any number of ways to gain access to your personal files, and therefore, any personal information stored on your computer. Even if you don’t knowingly keep any personal information on your computer, if you bank or shop online at all, it’s possible for someone who knows what they’re doing to gain access to delicate financial information.

But these are just examples of issues with household computers. What of the rest of the world? Instead of writing a cheque, we whip out our cards to pay for things when we’re short on cash. What happens when the internet goes down and you’re stuck in the checkout line with $200 worth in groceries, and no way to pay for them because you don’t have a blank cheque? What happens when everyone is driving their fancy, futuristic cars that run on a computer chip and something goes wrong? In a few hundred years, will anyone know how to drive the cars that we know today? Why are we really relying so much on computers? People put their computers through a lot of grief because they don’t quite know what they’re doing when they decide to fix a problem or clean up their hard drive, but there are also errors in programming, bugs that need to be fixed long after the product is out on the market, and there are always people trying to ruin a perfectly good thing with viruses and the like.

Survey Results

We have asked the same question aa‚¬A“Are we dependent on computers?aa‚¬? to our friends and fellow students and we gather these responses:

Yes, because many everyday skills have been lost due to the use of computers and other technology. I have had this argument many times with people. Because of computers and smart phones, too many people can’t think for themselves. They can’t decide what restaurant they want to go to without pulling up a search engine. They can’t add 2 + 2 because they always have their handy computer calculator to do the work for them. They can’t manage their own time, because their computer schedule is what keeps them in order.

In today’s society, we are too dependent on computers. People are losing their ability to function without a computer. Memorization is a thing of the past, we now depend on our cell phones to have the phone number of everyone we know and we no longer can even remember the phone number of our parents or children. We no longer worry about what we are writing or typing because we all use a word processing program that has spellchecker and checks for grammar mistakes. So as you can see we depend on computers too much and are losing our ability to memorize, type, spell, or even write a grammatical correct sentence.

We are way too dependent on computers today; most businesses are not able to run without a computer anymore. My belief that everybody somewhere somehow has to use a computer for what they are doing. Most businesses are run on computers or even by computers. Banking is now done on computers along with credit apps and even car and movie rentals. If we lost the use of computers at this point in time, our world would come to a screeching halt. Stocks would crash; gas pumps and credit card machines would go down. The dependency on computers is also an extreme risk to the way that businesses and lives are run. Some people are even addicted, having to be on the computer all the time. These reasons are why I think that we are too dependent on computers.

If we lose computers we end up in chaos. It is important to properly understand what being too dependent is. If we say that too dependent means that if we lose it in an instant then we are completely screwed and end up in chaos, then sure, we’re too dependent on computers. However, does the concept of too dependent even exist? Is it even possible to be too dependent on something? But the way I see dependence, we are too dependent.

Too many tasks are done using computers. At some point in a person’s day, a computer is involved – whether that is driving, writing, communicating, or even ordering food. Too many important aspects of our lives depend on computers and one of the crucial aspects is communication. For myself, I talk to more people per day via digital communication than in real life.

We are not too dependent on computers, because they allow us to perform better and produce more. Computers are tools, and you can never be too dependent on tools. Tools allow us to perform better and produce more. When I was in high school, research meant a trip to the library, finding the right book, and then taking notes with pencil and paper. Today, research is going online and cutting and pasting.

We are not too dependent on computers, because that would be the same as saying that we are too dependent on tools. Computers are only tools which help us to perform better.

Is the survival of the human race dependent on computers? No. However, if you asked, if modern society & developed nations are heavily dependent on computers? Then yes, to the extent that if you were able to destroy all computers overnight, then we would be in a terrible mess indeed, most forms of public transport, logistics, stock trading, banks, economy of the internet and modern life as we know it would come to a crashing halt and many of us would be too stunned to know how to deal with it.


In our opinion, computers and other developments of technology are useful and there is no possibility to live without them nowadays, as we got too much used to them. However, we should also work to find the ways of making our dependence on technology less dangerous for us. New developments should appear only when really important and helpful for people.