Facebook or no Facebook?

Facebook is everywhere these days, in our everyday life, in business, in schools and on our phones. It has become a big part of our life and the way we communicate with each other. So what happens if you choose not to sign up for Facebook? Will you be seen as a strange person, who might just want to be alone or who doesn’t care about the latest news in school, at work or in your circle of friends? A lot of young adults and teenagers feel that they have to sign up to not be left behind. How else are they going to find out about a birthday party or find out about gossip? Even in relation to work, employers are interested in your Facebook account to be able to look you up. Employers can also start to wonder who you are if you don’t have a Facebook account and this has become an issue for applicants (Goessl, 2012, p. 1). What if people choose not sign up due to security and privacy reasons?

When signing up on Facebook, users give away a lot of information about them self which they are not aware of. It can make it harder for people to reinvent themselves and when you sign up you agree that it’s Facebook that owns the rights to do as it pleases with your data, and to sell access to it to whomever is willing to pay (Rowan, 2010, p. 1). The question is should you sign up or not? If we could live a life without Facebook before it came in to action, what makes us believe that we can’t do the same today?

References:

Goessl, L. (2012). Does staying off Facebook make you a suspicious person? Retrieved from http://www.digitaljournal.com/article/330704

Rowan, D. (2010). Six Reasons Why I’m Not On Facebook. Retrieved from http://www.wired.com/business/2010/09/six-reasons-why-wired-uks-editor-isnt-on-facebook/

Social Media survey

This survey has been on my Facebook page for a week and from my findings, Facebook is the most popular social media tool with a 100% usage followed by Youtube, Twitter and Instagram. The average age for this survey was 15-25 and the three main reasons to have a social media page were to stay in contact with friends and family, to share music, videos and photos and to make professional business contacts. In the last question about the future of Facebook, 75% did not believe Facebook will decline in number of users but 50% answered that Instagram will be the new social media network that might take over Facebook.

Social Media Survey

 

What is Cyberspace?

What is cyberspace? Do we live in a cyberspace world or does it belong to another world beyond humans? Is it robots or something more advance that has the ability to control and live on its own? What exactly is cyberspace? I think we can look at cyberspace from a real and non-real perspective. For most people, cyberspace is something unreal, advanced technology interacting with humans and controlling our world, such as the movie Terminator, Blade Runner and Transformers.  Are these movies showing us the future? Are we moving into a world where humans and advanced technology go hand in hand? Will humans be able to connect their brains to the cyber network as in The Matrix movie and therefore access unlimited data? One definition of cyberspace is that it refers to the nonphysical environment created by joined computers interoperating on a network. (Wisegeek, n.d., para. 1). It is the idea that humans can interface with machines and that computers interact in a similar way to the real world, except cyberspace interaction does not require physical interaction (Ottis & Lorents, 2010, p. 1). Information in cyberspace, such as the World Wide Web, can be exchanged in real or delayed time, and people can share, shop, research, work or play.

The cyberspace environment such as the Internet is existing and real. In the video below, Captain Scott Hinck from Barksdale Air Force Base in LA, U.S. explains the importance of defending against cyberspaces vulnerabilities. The video shows that cyberspace is something real, a world we are living in right now, and how simple a person can hack into military systems with a computer. Is the movement of human interaction with technology and machines starting to develop a new world that some of us will be a part of while others will be left behind? Just like the move Hunger Games.

References:

Cyberspace [Video] (2010). Retrieved from http://youtu.be/OL2IORXwg2E

Ottis, R & Lorents, P. (2010). Cyberspace: Definition and Implications. Retrieved from http://www.ccdcoe.org/articles/2010/Ottis_Lorents_CyberspaceDefinition.pdf

The Hunger Games – Official Trailer [HD] [Video] (2011). Retrieved from http://youtu.be/OgssLmsOa2s

Wisegeek. ( n.d.). What is cyberspace?. Retrieved from http://www.wisegeek.com/what-is-cyberspace.htm

Key moments in cyberpunk history

Cyberpunk is often associated with high tech, future, darkness and the interaction between humans and machines. Something that seems to be the real world in the future, but yet we see cyberspace as a world of its own. Films like Blade Runner and The Matrix are based on humans connecting with technology and how technology is starting to replace humans. Is cyberspace and cyberpunk another world or does it exist in present time?

Check out some key moments in cyberpunk history in this timeline.

Bulletin Board System

Bulletin Board System (BBS), was a computer system running software. People could connect and log in to the system using a terminal program and exchanging messages with other users through email or direct chatting. Users could also upload and download software and data, reading news and compete in online games. This was a new technology that allowed people to interact with each other and towards the early 1990s, the BBS industry became very popular worldwide. It affected the way people communicated with each other.

With the Bulletin Board System, people could access information online and chat with other users instead of using their phone. It has therefore increased group activity by bringing people with similar interest together, not only physically and geographically, but online worldwide. However, the growth of BBS technology has also increased problems in determining system operators’ responsibility for what happens on their boards. Issues online such as, privacy, identity and personalization will slowly increase, and as we can see today, this is being one of our main topics for discussion.

Bulletin Board System reached its peak usage around 1996 and rapidly declined in popularity when the World Wide Web suddenly became mainstream during the same year. Some of the larger commercial BBSes, such as MaxMegabyte, evolved into Internet service providers.

Reference:

Connect: A Look At Bulletin Board Systems [Video] (2007). Retrieved from http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=ESaTREAAzww

Schlachter, E. (1993). Computer Bulletin Board Technology: Sysop control and Liability in a Decenralized Information Economy. Retrieved from http://www.ericgoldman.org/Articles/decentralizedinfoecon.pdf

Mind controll

The acceleration of digital technologies and the using of the internet, have a major impact on the human mind and how we think. With the development of smartphones, netbooks, and social networking services and how this multimedia is increasing the intensity of the interruptions that attack us, (Ford 2010). The human brain will get more and more disturb as the internet is getting more involved in our social life, work life and education. The question is should we be worried?

As Nicolas Carr stated in an interview by Matt Ford, CNN Tech, about mind control: the internet impacted Carr’s ability to pay deep attention to one thing over a long period of time. When he sat down to read a book, for instance, he was only able to sustain his concentration for a page or two. “My mind would begin to crave stimulation and distraction — it wanted to click on links, jump from page to page, check email, do some Googling” (Ford 2010, p.1). I think this is the part we need to worry about as children need to learn to read from printed books and to pay attention. If they get distracted all day from the net, they will never learn how to think deeply.

Our life has become much easier with the computer and the internet. We do shopping online, dating online, socialise with friends, get information about cafes and restaurants and so forth. The internet influences the way people are thinking and their opinions. For example, through social media I can easily find out the latest trends in music, fashion or which restaurants  are popular. What happens on Facebook or other social media sites influence friends and other people’s opinions and their decision making. When I’ve seen my friends’ status about a new restaurant or their photos on food from Instagram, I rather go there then try an unknown restaurant. The use of the internet has in one way made our world smaller even though it has given us unlimited access to information world wide.

Reference:

Ford, M 2010, Mind control: Is the internet changing how we think?, viewed 16 August 2012, http://articles.cnn.com/2010-09-16/tech/internet.brain.carr_1_climate-change-internet-digital-technologies?_s=PM:TECH