Khushi Gupta Tuesday, 28 April 2020

Embracing Technology during Lockdown

Khushi Gupta
Tuesday, 28 April 2020

Embracing Technology during Lockdown

The great growling engine of change is the technology. It has become appallingly obvious that our technology has exceeded our humanity. Technology development has taken place at such a huge scale that who could have imagined that in the situation of a health crisis like this, technology would come at hand so much that everything including business, education, doctors treatment, tournaments, cooking and so many other activities will be conducted online.Technology has dramatically altered the otherwise mundane indoor space for millions in the city. From ‘Fam Jams’ through online video platforms such as Zoom, Hangouts, Skype and Duo to multiplayer video games, tele-medical consultations to the smartphone's unlimited array of killer apps, tech is everyone's obsession.

Social distancing measures and the subsequent shift to remote working, socializing and school led to questions about the technology available to us, namely Zoom. Yet amid the challenges of implementing technology into our home lives, families are having to embrace technology to keep things “normal”, and finding increasingly creative ways to stay organized and educated online along the way. People who never expected – nor ever wanted – to use digital technology to communicate or work now must, and so they are learning. We could look at this integration of technologies into family life in a positive light, in that the use of these technologies at home necessitates a new level of digital literacy for everyone, but there’s an equally important downside to the movement of work-related technologies into home life, too. Technology is useful, but it is not a substitute for the classroom.Yet in addition to forcing educators and parents to consider how technology can better support education, the sudden shift to remote learning has also exposed profound problems. The expectation on parents to provide adequate time and technology to educate their children lays bare vast economic divides, and many families may be concerned by the impact of remote schooling on their child’s educational development as well as their ability to focus on their own work.

More than anything else, social distancing is so mandatory that even the ministers of different states are conducting their essential meetings through video calling. The various people in contact through all this situation are using this measure. It is also being used in order to communicate with patients or family members abroad. This is how technology and society are coming together. Marriages are happening on video call, families fix up timings for playing games through video chat. Although physical presence is not possible, surely virtual presence can cover for it. Birthdays, meetings, anniversaries everything happening online will become a normal activity after this lockdown ends.

Beyond family and friends, the video platform has also helped students of multiple hobby and self-defence classes to brush up their skills. As Anuplal Gopalan, a professor of Sociology informs, his son’s Karate master remotely shows the moves so that the steps are not forgotten. Dance classes too have gone online this way. Stuck indoors with no chance to go out and play, teenagers across the city have gone back to what they do best: Video games, both online and offline. PUBG is an old favourite,but online battle games such as Fortnite: Battle Royale and Call of Duty: Warzone, are all back in vogue, big time.Well, this may also result in technology addiction. For theatre artistes, standup and other visual art performers, the lockdown has meant a total redefinition of their connections with standup and other visual art performers, the lockdown has meant a total redefinition of their connections with the audience. Since social distancing is the mantra to combat the deadly Covid-19, they have all dived deep into the social media space and are using technology advantages.

Technology now and then has helped make another transition: Online crowdfunding. The migrant labour movement across the country moved a lot of people to tears and inspired them to support relief efforts. My sense is lakhs of Indians discovered online crowdfunding platforms for the first time. This bodes well for that future as it opens up an entirely new world of charity and funding for micro enterprises and causes. Badlaav is a non profit organisation which is raising funds for Covid - 19 with the help of artists. It has aimed to raise Rs. 15 lakhs, with the help of great artists like Karun Talwar (standup comedian), Nikhil Gonsalves (director) and many more by conducting a live event on Youtube. It is astonishing how the youth is using technological platforms for good causes.

When computerization took wings on a large scale in workplaces, banks, there was hue and cry that jobs would be gone but today it is an indispensable part of our lives. There is so much accuracy, speed and apps that are helping to reach the mass and connect with a huge number of people at the same time. It also has reached the peak where we are receiving the regular updates of the number of cases all around the world. Our honourable PM is running the country by sitting at one place video calling everyone, isn't that wonderful and also inspiring. Sometimes we wonder about the stage that technology has reached and taken the world to such a great extent.

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