Note: This week you will complete EITHER Discussion A or Discussion B. Discussion A: Important Technology Most jobs involve interaction with technology in some form. Police officers have computers in their squad cars, nurses enter your blood pressure and pulse into electronic files, and waitresses swipe credit cards at the table with smart phones. Twenty years ago, none of that was possible. Is there a profession in which some form of technology is not used? Technological innovations continue to invade nearly every aspect of our lives. George Orwell‘s prediction of “ubiquitous surveillance” may have come true. Not only can you track someone’s whereabouts with multiple technologies. Additionally, to marketing researchers armed with powerful tracking technology, you are becoming what you buy. Profiles track a range of human habits, the website you search triggers border advertisements luring us into related websites and content. The purchases you make produce coupons specific to you and your purchase history. Some of these events might be beneficial to your wallet-but how might this technology raise concerns about how are online movements are being tracked and by whom? Graphic Credit: Wikimedia Commons (2010, May 21). Map of television ownership [Infographic]. Retrieved from http://commons.wikimedia.org/wiki/File:Map_of_television_ownership.svg As global is becoming increasingly local, human beings are able to view, review, and react to events happening in real time half way around the globe. In the United States, 90% of homes have televisions. Is technology a good measure of progress? You have discussed how technology changes the human experience. Work is a human endeavor that has been radically altered by helpful machines. From assembly lines to call centers, our work is tied to technology. Often, you are monitored by technology, number of customer interactions, emails sent, and keystrokes on the computer. Technology itself is work as anyone with an Information Technology department can attest. This week you will discuss your human helpmates: machines. Use the Week 4 Notes and Readings in your response. Consider technology that you consider intrusive. This could be your cell phone or computer. Both can be used for good or for evil. How does increased access to technology enhance your work life? How has increased interaction with technology complicated your work life? To prepare for the Discussion: Return to the Week 1 Check Your Tech Home Technology Inventory document. Can you classify the technology you use into categories? Think of the many uses of technology presented this week and others you might know, especially those that track you in some way. Consider how your personal and professional perspectives might influence your attitudes about technology. Evaluate (by interviewing people or online searching) the types and extent of technology used in your profession. Determine how the use of technology is changing in your field of study. By Day 3 Post a response (at least 200–300 words) to the following prompt: We are more connected and dependent on our technology than ever before. In Week 2’s Reading, Thoreau chose to live at Walden Pond without any of the modern conveniences of his time for a while. Do you think you could be completely disconnected from any type of modern technology? Would there be benefits to disconnecting? Is there a specific technology or gadget that you use in your personal life that you could not live without? Could you do your current job without technology? Why or why not? Read two or more of your classmate’s posts. By Day 5 Respond by sharing insights you have about the technologies mentioned by two or more of your colleagues or alleviate their fears about the new technologies. Return to this Discussion in a few days to read the responses to your initial posting. Note what you have learned and/or any insights you have gained as a result of the comments your classmates made. Remember to return to the classroom in a few days, to check the Grade Center for Instructor comments and your grade. Prompt B: Technology Takes Sides In a world of social networking, Instagrams, Twitter, Pinterest, instant messaging, and Facebook, technology can help spread the word. These networks can organize and mobilize individuals from around the globe, sometimes for political or humanitarian purposes. World perspectives on local events can help shape response, action, and policy. Have you used technology or social media to learn about or share information about an event? In this Discussion you will analyze the role of technology in global events, using this week’s Learning Resources and Week 4 Notes and Readings. To prepare for the Discussion: Consider the following: Do you follow people on Twitter? Do you tweet, use Pinterest, Facebook, or instant message your friends? How often? Revisit the “Tweeting Towards Freedom” article in this week’s Notes and Readings. Consider if there a downside to have so much access? Identify an example of how new communication technologies have had an impact on the world stage and the impact it made. Consider how the immediacy of communication can impact the spread of information about world events-both good and bad. By Day 3 Post a response (at least 200–300 words) to the following prompt: Not long ago, we had to wait for the evening news or morning newspaper to find out what happened in the world. In today’s technological world we have instantaneous access to global events. Some believe that the nature of instantaneous access to global events has strong political impact. Select a current event happening in the world or your community. Describe the event, why you picked it, and explain how technology played a role in the way the news of this event spread. Discuss the benefits and downside of having so much access to local and world news. Read two or more of your classmate’s posts. By Day 5 Respond by sharing additional insights into the context of the world event or giving a different view to two or more of your classmates. Return to this Discussion in a few days to read the responses to your initial posting. Note what you have learned and/or any insights you have gained as a result of the comments your classmates made. Remember to return to the classroom in a few days, to check the Grade Center for Instructor comments and your grade. To complete your Discussion this week, select the Post to Discussion link. Then, select the corresponding thread: To respond to Discussion 1, select Discussion A – Week 4.
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