One of the greatest parts of growing up in my generation has been witnessing the transition from
newspapers and library catalog cards to having the ability to find almost any bit of news or information I might need or desire almost instantly from the internet.
I never was much of a TV watcher, but the news would only come on at certain times of the day (barring catastrophes) and follow a certain format, such as, world, local, weather and sports respectively; whereas, now I can quickly sift through search engine results and/or connect to my favorite news sites for articles of interest I can read when I want to read them.
Additionally, news from other countries is also quickly at my fingertips, for example: Britain’s The Guardian and RT (formerly known as Russia Today) which both aid in allowing me to gain a more objective world view.
Also, when TMZ simply isn’t enough, there is always the extensive British gossip news site Daily Mail (Mail Online).
The greatest way technology has improved my life in the past decade has been through online learning. After four years of study, I graduated in 2011 with an MFA in Creative Writing from the University of Texas at El Paso. Over a decade ago, online schools were not widely accepted. They have since grown in number and proved themselves to be a serious venue for earning a degree.
The Guide to Online Schools website lists online colleges and universities in the United States. It also provides rankings, tuitions and much more valuable information about almost any online degree program.
Although I truly do not miss those library card catalogs, there has grown a nostalgia for them as collectibles on e-Bay, for example. Aside from library links, I now rely heavily on search engines, most specifically, Yahoo.
This past year’s revelations by Edward Snowden regarding the NSA and its surveillance activities have ruffled many feathers throughout the world. An animated video from The Guardian, titled, “The NSA and surrveillance … made simple – video animation” explains its impact on the average person in easy-to-understand language.
I’ve long-ago resigned myself to the fact that privacy no longer exists in today’s society. However, I am very relieved I did not grow up in this ever-constant surveillance age, where every mistake a young person might ever make is forever recorded. Now only the mistakes of the tail end of my life will linger, unless, of course, some skeleton from a long-closed closet creeps onto the internet and rears its ugly head.