Last night I kept track of my computerized use. After spending the afternoon working on a group project, in which we were all on our computers doing research and adding to a google doc, I went home to relax and watch a new show I have started called ‘Boardwalk Empire’. I spent the next three hours watching Boardwalk Empire free online. Sunday evenings I probably spend the most time “plugged-in” to electronics including texting while watching TV shows, checking my Facebook, watching highlights from the Badger game, checking my emails and looking at pictures on my phone and uploading them to my computer. The more I analyze how much I use computers and technology, it is safe to say I depend on them for a lot of things, but I would not mind if they all did not exist sometimes.
So I tracked my use of “computerized” devices last night, and I’ve concluded that I stay extremely wired/ connected most the time….no surprise there.
I was (unfortunately) at the library for several hours last night. As I was writing a paper, I had my laptop out. I was simultaneously researching for my paper, writing for my paper, and probably all too often checking Facebook, Twitter, email and my guilty pleasure, Perezhilton.com. My iPhone was also never far. I was using this mostly to text.
After I left the library, I continued to use the internet on my laptop to check my social networking sites, email, and to read lots of awesome stories about the awesome Badgers and the Rose Bowl! If my laptop is not out, I tended to still check these things every now and then up until I go to bed. I watched Netflix through the Wii, so thats hooked up to the internet.
Even as I laid down to bed, I was still “computerized”. I fell asleep to an episode of The League on my laptop. Staying connected through these devices is informative and generally entertaining. However, I wasted a ton of time at the library (as I often do) when I should have been strictly working on my paper. I will be paying dearly for that tonight. I also wish that at night, when I’m off the clock and ready to relax, it was easier to “unplug” and avoid things like email, but its such a habit to check these things regularly. I believe my use of computerized devices is probably pretty reflective of the usual college student, and probably a broader demographic.
Last night was the best time to keep track of all of my computerized use because it was a lazy Sunday evening and I had time to check on every computerized aspect of my life. First, I went to Associated Bank online to check to see how much I spent at the bars this weekend. That is always the worst feeling to check on your account and see multiple pending transactions that you faintly remember. Next, I checked on both my Yahoo and ESPN fantasy football leagues to see how my teams were doing. In addition, in order to complete my finance homework and online tests I have to access myfinancelab.com and do all of the requirements online. In between checking on my finances and homework, I ofcourse checked my email and searched online for other entertaining and trivial purposes. This participation assignment made me realize that almost every aspect of my college life revolved around using computerized technology. It is hard to imagine how my parents and grandparents managed everything in the pre-computerized era.
Last night was a crazy night to choose to keep track of what I was doing online and on different networked technologies. First off I worked my job at the UW Foundation T-fund which means I sit in front of a computer for 3.5 hours calling alumni and going through hundreds off computerizer records. During this time it gets a little boring so I obvi am on my phone playing Words With Friends, Tweeting, and checking Facebook. After work tickets for the Rose Bowl were going on sale at 9 PM and based on my experience last year they sell out really fast. So because I was so nervous about not getting tickets my roommate and I grabbed as many lap tops as we could find, between the rest of my roommates, and sat online preparing for 9 o’clock to come around in hopes the server would let us on first to buy tickets. My roommate couldn’t get through right away but luckily everything worked great for me and I was able to do three different transactions on my lap top at 9:01, 9:04, and 9:08. Needless to say I was pretty much never not using the internet and my computer yesterday.
When documenting all of the technology I used in one night, I was pretty appalled at how reliant I am on different technological devices. I’ll start counting from when I finished dinner at around 8:00. I sat on my couch and turned on the television. Obviously, I always have my phone on me–I use it for texting, phone calls, games, and a camera. After a few minutes, I got my computer to check facebook (I could have easily checked it on my phone, but I like looking at the bigger screen on my computer). While on my computer I logged onto twitter, my aol mail, stumbleupon, etc. My friend Jen was sitting on the couch with me and was playing a game on her iPad, so naturally I then played a few games on it too. Before going to bed, I turned on my TV (which I fall sleep to every night), set the alarm on my phone, and plugged my computer into the charger. Essentially I only used my laptop, my phone, and watched TV–which is what I do nearly every day.
Tonight, the two obvious computerized items that I used were the computer and my cell phone. I not only used my cell phone to call my mom, text my friends, and make a to-do list for the week, but I also used it to set my alarm for tomorrow morning. In using my computer, I wrote this blog post and checked Facebook and my email accounts for updates. Tonight, my roommates and I made chicken so we defrosted it using the microwave’s poultry defrost button. Once you press this button, the microwave automatically sets the timer to defrost the chicken for a certain amount of time. We also used the “automatic popcorn” button to pop the popcorn for the specified time. We used the heat, which is set to reach a certain temperature, automatically and we watched a movie that our DVR program recorded last week. So, after thinking back on how many computerized devices I used in one night, I realized how dependable we are on these devices and really started thinking about how life was when we did not have all of these items of convenience. It is interesting to think about the fact that we use these devices every single day and not too long ago when our parents were young, they have non of these items! Well, they did have heat.
Last night, I decided to track my use of every computerized thing I used in an evening. I would have to say every single night brings different uses of technology, but last night I especially used my cell phone and laptop. I used my cell phone to text and call my friends and family, since it was my birthday weekend I was on it a lot. I have the iPhone, so I also used my phone to play games, especially my latest addiction: Words With Friends. Unfortunately, I got pulled into the game by my friends who told me how amazing it was… but it takes up a ton of time. I’m currently beating some people, but losing to others, too. I also used my cell phone to search up the name of a restaurant my friends wanted to go to for dinner. My cell phone was running slow on the wifi, so we decided to use my computer at my house instead. I used Google to search up the address for the restaurant and to get directions. I also went onto Facebook and uploaded pictures from the weekend, uploading them first to an album on iPhoto. I also played music on iTunes while I was getting ready for dinner. Some other nights I use other computerized things like a TV or iPod, but last night was pretty basic. I find it interesting how helpful computerized things are in assisting us in our everyday lives, and to make communicating with others easier than ever.
When keeping track of every computerized thing that I use in one evening, I would usually only use just my iPhone, and my Macbook. Last night I used my laptop pretty much all night to get work done, chat with friends and surf the web. I also used my iPhone to communicate with others and receive emails while I was away from my computer. It is sad to say that I am extremely dependent on my smartphone for receiving important emails immediately. Without this technology, I would be terrible at checking all of my different email accounts and notifications.
Other than my computer and cell phone, I also used my iPod to listen to music. I watched some TV shows on Apple TV, which is a device made by Apple that connects all of your itunes data to your TV set enabling access to shows, movies and music with the click of a button. Lastly, earlier in the evening I used the computers in Vilas hall to access FinalCutPro to finish a film project for a class. Furthermore it is safe to say that computerized objects, and the internet are vital to my everyday daily activity and life would be much more difficult without this useful technology.
I wasn’t sure what all actually constituted as a computer, but my boyfriend said it could actually be many electrical things, so here is my use in one evening.
Cell phone– I texted people throughout the evening. Sometimes they were two hours away, sometimes they were in the same room as me. I also talked to a few people on the phone.
Television– I watched the Big 10 Championship (Go Badgers!) and a little bit of the Oxygen channel.
Laptop– I quickly checked my Facebook and e-mail, and then spent a good deal of time reading for a class before the game.
Microwave– I heated up leftovers. I was surprised by this one, but I guess this is really computerized. It’s funny, I just always thought of computers as standard screens with keyboards and a modem.
It was really interesting to find out that many electrical things have computers in them. It makes you think about how vital the computer has been to our every day lives without our awareness of it. After reflecting on this blog post, I actually think I use laptops/desktop computers less as entertainment and more for school and work. I don’t know if this is because I’m not as obsessive with Facebook as I used to be, or if schoolwork has gone away from pen and paper and transferred over to the digital realm. I think it’s both.