Computer, according to Kaczmarczyk, is a programmed general purpose machine that carries out logic and arithmetic operations. With their ability of an artificial person they play a significant role in running our day to day life. They are being used in industries, different trades, military work, education exploration and many other works of our lives. Nowadays, we cannot imagine life without computers. These machines have become a part and parcel of modern living and nothing can replace them. They have moved from offices to schools, churches, offices pocket technology has made them portable. Since the invention of the first real computer in 1948, life has dramatically changed; the machine is improved which is now the real digital revolution.
The first generation of computers was different from what we use today. In addition, computers are important in all daily transactions that we engage in, be it either about business, home or about social occasions. The field that has gained the most with the invention of the computer is the business field because of its nature. However, it is evident that there are no individual or country that will develop without the use of these machines in their operations. Moving business and affecting all sectors of the economy, military logistics has worked by the simple means, however, effectively only after the computer technology was developed. Manual applications’ in doing things in our institutions is a long gone story, which magnifies the importance of computer for life.
Therefore, computers have gained credit for increasing efficiency and productivity of work. Large amounts of information and data in business, industrial sector and personal life are stored in computers. The medicine sector has also been revolutionalized by these machines, as most of them are automated under the control of this unique machine. In addition, to running machineries ion hospitals and theatres, doctors use them to store date, scan patients’ bodies and even while making surgeries that are expected to be complex and dangerous the success is impossible without the computers.
In the field or science and technology, where research is a key driver of this sector, computers have made possible to store data and obtain solutions for complex research calculations and drawing conclusions on research work are executed. The good work of a computer is also undeniable in the communication sector (Swedin). Due to the use of the miraculous invention in the communication sector the world has become a global village. The entertainment and the media industry also have not been left behind.
Within minutes, multi-million movies, music and other software have exchanged hands in the very concept of entertainment through the use of computers. With the computer industry growing very fast, the technology has created a revolution in its own industry. Desktops have been replaced by palmtops and laptops, the portable system is becoming popular in every industry. Current computers have been reduced in size, and their features improved. Therefore, it is now possible to use them in full capacity and even to carry them inside pockets and bags and to work from the house unlike those times it was a must to work from the office.
However, the importance of computers to the economy can be judged by the aggregate users of the machine on a daily basis for economic benefit. Nowadays, computers are not only used by professionals, but it has become a daily gadget for everybody for even elders and children’s at home. Computers are undeniable fact for their benefits in the current world. If we make a list of the top gadgets of the century, computers will be at the top of the list for its diversity in the world activities.
However, computers have had different impacts on the political, social and economic spheres of life. For example, everybody thought that American political campaigns will be revolutionized by the use of computers. However, little is still known among us how computers as a key communication and information tools are being used politically. Present researches on computers and political campaigns have come with a set of hypothesis about how proponents of ballot measures and candidates use computers in elections.
The hypothesis tries to relate the environmental uncertainties during campaigns to the resources at their disposal to computer use (Shelly). This hypothesis was determined from the data, collected from 35 campaign managers through an in-depth interview. The research indicates that the use of computers in campaigns and in making political decisions is highly influenced by the uncertainties in the political environment. For those politicians who face unpredictable campaign wave, there are high chances to use computers in comparison to those who are stable in the political run.
This does not depend on how much money the politician is fuelling his campaign with or how competitive the race is. The study draws attention to how important computers are to political campaign organizations as the open systems for the practical conduct of the election campaigns. In addition to campaigns, since the intensive use of computers and their applications, like the Internet, politicians have found a good platform to advertise themselves online. Before this technology came at door steps, it had been very hard to evaluate the manifestos of these politicians; to even meet them or hear from them was not possible.
Although other media like television and radio are still important for campaigns, the Internet has bypassed them over a few years. Also, politicians are able to exchange information while still in their offices, communicate with each other easily or share documents. However, a good character with politicians that help them in the use of the computer is that they can smartly write their manifestos, organize it and keep it in the Internet in different formats for the different viewers.
Moreover, before this technology the only way politicians could communicate with their followers was through mass mailings, bill boards, televisions, but nowadays one can read a lot about them in the Internet and even exchange the ideas through email. Another merit, earned by politicians who use the computers is during counting of votes. A central place department is where all votes are counted from all polling stations and through the Internet, via computers for general counting. Use of computers has also facilitated politicians to conduct virtual meetings and easily establish communication while still at a distance.
However, despite the many advantages that computers give to the political environment, there are also some minor disadvantages. Although, it may not seem that computers have any disadvantages when used in politics, they may be exploited in various ways, which are not always good. For example, opposing parties may write wrong information or bad views about their competitors in the Internet to blackmail their name? This has been the order of the day as politicians use the social sites, such as Facebook, in their campaign. These sites are easily hacked and wrong information is spread very fast, while within their page or account. Also, stored information’s on political strategies can be stolen by hackers and if one lacks backup storage, he/she looses much.
Computer technology has also brought controversies with culture and change of values. The future of this technology will come to a situation where we order and pay bills while seated on computer desks. There will still be no more than face-to-face human interaction as the computer will enable to facilitate all that. For many, this might come as a blessing, but the computerized world is eliminating initial communication methods, and interaction in the society hence is watering down the cultural values. Culture is the whole amount of socially transmitted customs, learned knowledge, behavior and material objects. It includes the values, customs, ideas and artifacts of group of people.
In a different context, it is said to be human activities in their varied patterns and symbols that give this activities significance. It is how people dress, what they eat, activities they engage in and beliefs that they hold. It is the total amount of the ways of life that people involve in an attempt to meet the challenges of the environment that they live in. Therefore, culture gives meaning to peoples political, social, aesthetic, economic and religious norms thus distinguishing people from their neighbors (Morley).
Computer technology and its extensive use have interfered with the way people live and hence affected their culture. Computers are being used to determine political waves, therefore, contributing to leaders that we elect, in economic actives and also in our culture, which is the reflection of culture. This means that computers have already influenced the way we interact and share in the society. The world has also been reduced with the technology and people can easily interact across the world and adopt different culture. Therefore, what originally by its definition was culture has been changed to have a different meaning.
The advent of computer technology has made the current developed world operate in a context of exchange and has interfered the way cultures are preserved and practiced. It has brought the culture and heritage of the western at door steps, desktops, and laptops at reading tables with just a click of the mouse. The computer is the facilitating machine for communication technologies, which according to the research are the principle initiators of cultural change. No aspect of human is left unaffected by communication technologies; from family life, schools, workplace, friendship, health care, recreation, religious worship and politics. In an effort to shape and better life by inventing computer, existing cultural values have been mounded
It is evident that computers have changed the way we use the five senses, reactions to things, therefore, the entire society, personal life’s and the way we do things is affected and that is culture. This is because irrespective of whatever relevance computer technology applies or position of time, it is undisputable that computer technology is the back bone of the information and communication revolution which is not a stimulus of cultural erosion. Therefore, information technology revolution came as a result of discovery of the satellite and computer technology which have brought globalization about. The world is, therefore, reduced into a small village, people can interact freely and share their cultures and hence a different culture emerges out of use of computer.
Everybody, who uses computer in our society, will attempt to argue that they are neutral, and it only makes sense to ethical and moral judgments about them in terms of their use. While, we cannot deny that there is a possibility of constructive and destructive use for every human development of technology. This is because in the process of producing and developing the technology, the value judgments that human beings make have both negative and positive implications on the human society.
Therefore, technology of the computers just like any other invention by human cannot be considered to be morally neutral with regard to the human society. It is undeniable that we cannot be neutral to determine their societal implications. However, the ideologies of the values attached to the computer technology through technological realities differ with those that affirm human society from the negative ones is known as discernment. As with all elements of human culture, we have to approach computer technology with discerning, hearts, bodies and minds.
The military sector also has not been left behind in the use of this machine of today called computer. They have enabled high levels of efficiency and effectiveness in the modern military applications. Computers are very useful in setting military logistics over the sea, air and ground ambush (Parsons). The accuracy of digital computing and computational abilities has enabled the military to execute their missions with lesser cost to the government and less risk exposure while in the battle field. Wars before the invention of the computer would take long and with immense loss of property and life of civilians and soldiers on both sides.
However, today even weapons are computerized to know where the target is, thus making even weapons intelligent (Yost). In addition, it is now possible to destroy one building, an enemy, hiding from hundreds of miles away by launching a projectile which is controlled by a computer. This nature of warfare is far much less expensive compared to manual systems, and there is efficient use of resources. The advanced use of computers gives the firearms the intelligent to eliminate a rebel soldier from all bystanders as the installed applications can make autonomous decisions before taking actions.
The knowledge of where precisely an aircraft, a ship, a projectile or a soldier is has always been one big achievement in the art of war that was enabled by the computer age. The computerized Global Positioning System is used by the military to locate their enemies before they are noticed and clear them on time. In the current military operations, it is difficult to win any fight without the use of computers or lunch a satellite. Computers are the ones that help in generating signals to the receiver; this signal will determine how far the missile is far from the enemy and whether it is still on target.
For example, the Tomahawk cruise missile can be planted from a destroyer’s deck off the coast of an enemy country, the missile with the aid of computer pilots itself with supersonic speed and low altitude to avoid being shot. This is made possible under computer control, using the global positioning system and resulting in precision impact with the enemy or target. Computers are also highly used in the modern fighter aircraft these aircrafts have hundreds of control options to be executed within a second to keep them at high speed and on target. Therefore, it is only possible to have these crafts work only under the control of computers which can perform various tasks at once.
Computers are also harmful to the health of human being. Firstly, the monitors are dangerous to the eyesight, although, nowadays they have improved with advancement in technology. In addition to the eyesight problem, working for long hours with a computer can cause epilepsy problem, especially with children. Moreover, a lot of trust has been placed on the compute as the safe storage device. However, sometimes the hard disk may break down, leading to the loss of important information. In addition, if there is loss of power and some information is stored in the computer is needed urgently then it becomes inconveniencing.
In the recent past computers have also contributed a lot to moral decay, there have been incidences of violence and sex immorality that are contributed by use of computers. Bloody games and pornography has posed a threat to many young users who are able to access the internet through computers. However, parents are not able to control the content OF sexual images in the internet. Also, there are games where the star is a soldier whose target is to kill as many enemies as possible. Such photos make children’s grow with that knowledge of violence in their mind as they try to practice the fight in their game and the mafia character they end up rue. The other threat that may happen is that, use of the computer is addictive is addictive if one spends a lot of time with the machine.
Computers have also caused stress on the less educated workers. There is a lot of pressure by firm managers on all workers to have knowledge on computers, however, the ever changing programs and computer skills have given workers hard time. In addition to this, with computers there is an instant connection between employees, fellow workers, vendors, clients and business networks through the day. Therefore, there are instantaneous communications, often with desire for an immediate response; this will cause an additional stress at the work place.
In conclusion, it is undeniable that almost every fact of our life has been improved by computers. There have been improvements in the communication, medical procedures, running of appliances and the economy in general. Therefore, computers have permanently altered human life with the technology that comes with them. Nowadays, everything we do revolve around computers (Golumbia). However, some people will complain that computers have made their lives complicated and stressful while others will appreciate the efficiency the machine has brought in their life. Therefore, computers have zeroed to the economy, social and political life’s both positively and negative.