When you hear or read the word ‘cyborg’ you probably have an image in mind of what this would look like. A half man half machine abomination, soulless and cold. But take a good look at your own life. Think of all the things you do during your morning routine and throughout the day through to the evening. How many times did you use your smartphone? To check the time. To look up the weather. Maybe you sent some messages or even called someone. Technology has become a part of our daily lives. And it’s not just driving to work or microwaving your meal. It’s the way you think and communicate, the way you connect to the world. In essence, technology is becoming part of what it means to be human.
Companies are constantly working on new ways to increase computing power on the one hand and decrease the size of these computers on the other hand. So what if the next big thing to come out is a microchip that connects to your brain, which in turn connects you to the internet and all the other people with a chip in their skulls? Would you do it? Maybe.
Where would that lead us? Would this dehumanize us or make us even more human? And what does it mean to be human anyway? Would you be a Google-borg or an Apple-borg?
There are of course many doom scenarios that could come to pass if we continue down this path. But since we are heading there anyway, let’s indulge in some speculation.
The way we use technology has already drastically altered us, and perhaps this will become especially evident in the next generation. Smartphones are in essence back up brains. How many of you still calculate numbers in your minds? Most people I know need a calculator. Memories, songs, texts and information are all readily available and no real effort to memorize things has to be made anymore. So what might happen if we increase our dependence on these devices? Perhaps our brains will evolve away from rational thinking and will instead become more empathic. A thousand generations from now mankind’s brain may have a completely different function from one today because many of it’s functions have been replaced by computing power. Who knows? I, for one, am curious to see what the future holds. What about you? Let me know in the comments below!
Featured image : Futurama