Major Upcoming Software Releases

By Joshua Dowding – 2020 will be a hectic year for some of the world’s largest software companies. Each of the three top operating systems, including Windows, macOS, and Ubuntu Linux…

By Joshua Dowding

2020 will be a hectic year for some of the world’s largest software companies. Each of the three top operating systems, including Windows, macOS, and Ubuntu Linux, will see significant new releases either within the next few weeks, or within the next five months in Apple’s case. In this article, I’d like to go over some of the more impactful features and changes for each release and discuss when to expect these new versions to land.

Windows 10 20H1 ‘2004’

Microsoft’s first significant update to their Windows operating system will see the version bump to 20H1 or 2004 – both denoting the same release. It’s expected to land sometime in April as a free update for existing Windows 10 users, and come with a bevvy of changes and improvements across the board.

Preview releases have been made available through the Windows Insider Program, though for those less inclined to experiment with something as fundamental as their operating system, here’s a round-up of some of the changes you can expect to see from the 20H1 update.


Cortana Improvements

Microsoft has improved the Cortana experience on Windows 10 by refactoring it into its own application instead of being tied into the operating system. This means that future improvements to Cortana won’t have to wait for significant releases. Cortana will be updated through the Microsoft Store instead, so updates will come more frequently than before.

What’s more: Microsoft claims to have improved Cortana’s performance “significantly”, they’ve refreshed it’s user interface, it’ll respect the user’s current theme setting now – light or dark, and users can interact with Cortana by typing into a “chat box” instead of just talking to it.

Desktop Improvements

20H1 will tout a variety of smaller improvements and changes. Some of the more noteworthy among these will include: the File Explorer’s new search interface powered by the new “Windows Search” system, improvements to the Windows Ink experience including direct access to the Microsoft Whiteboard and Snip & Sketch applications from the taskbar, the ability to make a device “passwordless” which removes the traditional password prompt from the lockscreen, the second release for the Windows Subsystem for Linux with improvements to I/O performance, and the ability to rename Virtual Desktops after they’ve been created and save them between reboots.

There are many other changes coming to the 20H1 release. Windows Central have an up-to-date list of them on their website which I’d encourage you to checkout if you’re interested.

Ubuntu 20.04 LTS ‘Focal Fossa’

For those after my own heart, you may have heard about, or used, Canonical’s popular Ubuntu operating system. For those who don’t know, Ubuntu is a free and open-source operating system developed by Canonical, a London-based company, for desktops, laptops, servers, and IoT devices. 20.04 has been slated for release on the 23rd of April and will be an important update for Ubuntu ecosystem since it’ll be supported for at least five years after launch. These ‘long-term support releases’ tend to form the basis of third-party platforms, so here’s a round-up of the features coming in its upcoming release.

Default Theme Improvements & Dark Theme

One of the more striking improvements to make it’s way to Ubuntu 20.04 LTS will be it’s improved default theme. This time, it comes in light, mixed (“standard”), and dark variants, with a handy toggle setting to choose between them from the Settings application.

This brings 20.04 on-par with other operating systems that include a darker theme variant. Ubuntu already has a ‘night light’ feature to help ease the levels of blue light emanating from the screen, but a dark theme variant would go some way further to help those who still experience eye strain.

Moreover, 20.04 ships with a new set of icons and a visual refresh to the ascent colours used throughout the operating system. These include a mixture of subtle, but uniform orange and purple highlights, replacing the cacophony of greens, blues, and oranges seen in previous releases.


Desktop Improvements

Canonical contributes to an upstream project called GNOME which has been serving as Ubuntu’s default desktop environment since it abandoned Unity back in 2017. 20.04 ships with the recently released GNOME 3.36 which, in-tern, comes with a number of improvements that 20.04 will inherit. These include: an improved lock screen that displays a blurred variant of the user’s desktop wallpaper in the background, a ‘do not disturb’ toggle that’ll prevent notifications from being displayed, improvements to ‘app folders’ including the ability to rename them while they’re open, a new ‘Extensions’ application for handling desktop extensions, ‘password peeking’ in password fields, and a mixture of other system-wide changes to help improve its performance and fluidity.


System Improvements

For those of a more technical disposition, Ubuntu 20.04 will ship with support for displaying an OEM, or vendor logo on boot. 20.04 will also feature improvements to multi-monitor support in GDM (which provides both the lock and the login screens amongst other things), as well as improved support for ZFS (though this is labelled as ‘experimental’ in the installer), and Linux Kernel 5.4 to boot. In addition, 20.04 will also feature the usual smorgasbord of package updates available from the distro archive.

macOS 10.16 (‘Catalina + 1’) et al.

Apple is expected to hold their virtual developers conference – WWDC – later in June, and while we never know in advance what Apple might announce at its events, we can still look at the trends from previous years, and the rumours that have been reported on across the web.

Traditionally, Apple unveils it’s latest software releases at WWDC; from macOS to iOS, iPadOS, watchOS, and even tvOS. These releases tend to drop in the autumn of the same year – either in September or October. With that said, let’s take a look at what we believe will be included with the upcoming macOS 10.16 release.


macOS & iOS – Destinies Entwined?

While Apple has stated that they will not merge macOS and iOS, for fear of diluting the two operating systems, Apple has continued to make strides in recent years with integrating the two systems into one seamless ecosystem. In macOS 10.15, Apple depreciated iTunes in favour of its new TV, Podcasts, Music applications which had been carried over from iOS thanks to another feature of 10.15 – it’s new cross-platform development tools. Likewise, Project Catalyst allows developers to port their iPadOS applications to the Mac with relative ease.

What’s more; Apple has recently built-in support for Universal Purchasing into iOS 13, allowing developers to provide a single licence that grants access to one application on a variety of different Apple platforms, including the Mac.

Additionally, macOS 10.15 introduced the Screen Time feature from iOS 12, as well as a new shared feature for both macOS and iPadOS called Sidecar, which allows users to use their iPad as a second display for their Mac.

And let’s not forget the rumours of an ARM-based Mac making an appearance in the not-too-distant future. Meaning that the Mac could share the same fundamental hardware platform as iOS, iPadOS, tvOS, and watchOS. After all, Apple has been developing their own proprietary processors since the introduction of the first iPad which debuted the Apple A4 system-on-a-chip. Apple continues to develop their own silicon to this day. Could a future Apple processor debut for the Mac?


While AppleInsider reports that both iOS 14 and macOS 10.16 could feature improvements to their respective Messages applications, beyond that the rumour mill isn’t betting high on anything else that’s leaked so far.

Final Thoughts

2020 is already shaping up to be an important year for the software industry. I look forward to taking each of these new releases for a test-drive closer to their respective release dates, and I’d encourage the adventurous to do the same. Fire-up a virtual machine, or load-up a release candidate on an old compute; it’ll be something mildly interesting to do during the lockdown!

Images: Joshua Dowding, Wikipedia, Geekrar, Digital Trends, and Brett Jordan on Unsplash


Connected: Social Media & Online Friends – A Discussion

By Ciéra Cree & Soyeenka Mishra – Social media is everywhere – and I mean everywhere. In our hands, in our subconscious, and on the walls of our go-to coffee shops. It’s inescapable…

By Ciéra Cree & Soyeenka Mishra

Social media is everywhere – and I mean everywhere. In our hands, in our subconscious, and on the walls of our go-to coffee shops. It’s inescapable – almost trapping at times – but there’s no doubt that the ease of communication it brings is remarkable. You can talk to anyone at anytime and your conversation can take place literally anywhere.

I decided to have a discussion with Soyeenka, an online friend of mine living in India, about the topic of online friendship and social media in general. I wanted to see how she would respond to some of my thoughts and questions on the subject. This is an excerpt from the discussion we had together.

A selection of international snacks!

Q1: Do you use many social media platforms?

Soyeenka: ‘Umm, I don’t really know how many counts as too many. I definitely have accounts in MANY social media platforms (most of them abandoned), but I regularly use three of them: WhatsApp, Instagram and Pinterest. And Buzzfeed too, if that counts.’

Q2: Have you made many friends online?

Soyeenka: ‘I have made around 4 friends online, out of whom, you are the only one I’m still in contact with (not for lack of trying on my part, though). 2 of them either stopped replying or didn’t bother to start up a conversation, and the one who is left I talked to infrequently throughout last year but I guess we are still pretty close since we share some common interests. I felt distant when I talked with them really.’

Q3: Have you come across any dangers online regarding this?

Soyeenka: ‘Not yet, no. I’ve gotten quite a few messages from creepy sounding people so I just ignore them at all times. Prevention is better than cure, in most cases, therefore I don’t respond to anything that seems remotely off. So no, I haven’t come across anything potentially dangerous when making friends online.’

Q4: Do you consider online friends to be actual friends and, if so, what would you say to those who don’t?

Soyeenka: ‘I definitely consider online friends as actual friends, if not more. I have a total of 4 close friends, and I’m very chatty with 2 of them. I talk with you nearly as often as them (I’m sure we would talk more if it were not for the time zone difference).’

‘To those who don’t consider online friends as actual friends, they must really have a genuine out-of-the-way reason for thinking so. I mean, hey, the other person might be considering you as a really good friend and here you are, just using them to pass time. Friendship is a two-way street, therefore both of the people must be equally invested in it. The people who don’t consider an online friend as actual friends are unconsciously wasting their own time too, with meaningless (on their part) talks as well as the time of the other person (since there are people out there who truly want to make friends). As for me, I definitely consider the connection I have with people I befriend online as actual friendship.’

Q5: As a whole, what do you think about social media?

Soyeenka: ‘I can identify what problems/dangers a person may face as side effects of social media, but I tend to stay safe and use it in an appropriate manner. That being said, I consider it to be a place where we can find the content of our interest (for me that being the likes of fanfiction and fanart). We can also connect with people all over the world, but that’s not something new.’

‘It’s through the means of social media that we can also follow the lives of the people we look up to or admire. Apart from the general uses of it to make friends and talk with them, social media also provides a platform where one can choose to remain anonymous if they want to, supplying them with the self-confidence and courage they may lack during a real-life conversation.’

‘I agree that there are far too many cons of social media keeping in mind how the world is today, but as long as it’s used sensibly these can be largely avoided. I personally love social media, it helps me to discover things within my interests such as book recommendations.’

Q6: Where do you see social media heading in the future?

Soyeenka: ‘Well, social media has definitely come a long way from where it started. People can not only share their thoughts and pictures, but also other things like media files, documents etc.’

‘Nowadays people are so invested in social media that returning to real life can seem hard. Heck, people have close-knit friend circles over social media as well as friends who without it they would have never come into contact with. At the same time, however, social media to some extent contributes to the detriment of people (but all the memes are cool though…). Jokes aside, what turn social media would take in the future, in my opinion, totally depends on the developers and the current generation who both use the platforms now and shall also be the ones developing them further in years to come.’

‘In the future I just want it to be something parents warn their children not to use, at least not without the necessary restrictions. It should be something people can look forward to after a long day of school, work or whatever it may be as a place to destress as opposed to one which can sadly cause further tension and anxiety among its users.’

What are your thoughts on social media and our increasingly connected future? Are you a pessimist, an optimist, or a mixture of the two?

Featured photo by Robin Worrall on Unsplash

Podcasts for Beginners

By Hannah Miller – If, like me, you seem to have missed the hype about podcasts when they became big about three years ago, you’ll be just as surprised as I was when I realised I actually really liked listening to them. While still a relative newbie to the world of podcasts…

By Hannah Miller

If, like me, you seem to have missed the hype about podcasts when they became big about three years ago, you’ll be just as surprised as I was when I realised I actually really liked listening to them. While still a relative newbie to the world of podcasts, I’ve compiled a list of some of my favourite podcasts.

Ross Noble: Poddin’ on the Ritz


This was the first podcast I ever listened to, and let me tell you, if musicals are your thing, you will love it. Even if they aren’t I would still 100% recommend. Starring Ross Noble and Hadley Fraser, when they starred together in ‘Young Frankenstein’ at the Garrick Theatre, this podcast is by far one of the funniest things I’ve ever stumbled upon. With stories of bad audience members, mistakes on stage and interviews with the cast and staff of the theatre, the two of them work well together as a duo. Each podcast ends with the segment ‘Musical of the Week’, where they find a somewhat lesser known musical and talk about it, often ripping it to shreds, causing, on several occasions, me to literally laugh out loud when listening to it whilst walking to uni.

No Such Thing as Fish


Probably one of the most well known podcasts out there, it would be amiss to leave this off the list. Starring the ‘QI Elves’, this podcast brings to light some of the weirdest and most interesting yet random facts out there. Both hilarious and interesting, it makes me wonder why I took so long to find it, especially as I’m a big fan of the show QI. While it is missing out on some of the quips that the TV show allows, with the comedians on the show, the podcast still manages to entertain and educate, whilst being one of the best podcasts out there.

Boys Don’t Cry


Unlike the other two, this podcast tackles more serious issues. Created by comedian Russel Kane, he aims to tackle many of the problems men face in society today. With different guests on each episode, he tackles issues such as body image and friendship.  With three guests each week, including Joel Dommett and Jamie Laing. Combining both serious and comedy, he broaches subjects that challenge toxic masculinity and show the problems men face today.

Wonder Women


If you know me at all, this podcast being on the list won’t be a surprise at all. Created by west end actresses Carrie Hope Fletcher and Celinde Schoenmaker, they talk all things female. With only two episodes released thus far, they’ve talked about forgotten women in history and female hysteria, with the promise to cover female relationships next episode. The episodes are released every other week and promises to be a good series. It feels like you’re just sitting there with two of your friends having a chat over a gin and tonic, talking about all things women. A brilliant podcast by two of my favourite women.

These are only a few of the podcasts I listen to, but if anyone else has any suggestions, please leave a comment and let me know!

Are Fashion Bloggers and Social Media Changing The Fashion Industry?

By Eliza Rawson – In the 21st century, everything we need is at the touch, swipe and click of a button. Flicking through a magazine to find the latest trends seems to be an…

By Eliza Rawson

In the 21st century, everything we need is at the touch, swipe and click of a button. Flicking through a magazine to find the latest trends seems to be an old-fashioned concept now when apps such as Instagram and Pinterest exist, giving users an endless portrayal of the bags and shoes of their dreams. Online fashion journalism (especially blogging) seems to be the ‘new-in’ thing at the moment, with fashion bloggers and influencers posting left, right and centre. Are these fashion influencers changing the meaning of the fashion industry?

Young influencers amass thousands of followers, dictating to them what the ‘in’ looks are, how to dress for your body, but also opening up the platform for more diverse content creators.

Fashion blogging kicked off back in 2007 when the fascination with social media apps soon became immensely popular. The ability to post photos on an app to share with the world was a concept which everyone wanted to be a part of. Instagram was founded in October 2010, generating over 800 million users to this date. The app is a central hub for fashion bloggers and influencers to post and share their daily outfits; often tagging ‘ootd’ (outfit of the day for all you unaware) creating flat lays and sharing their current favourite outfits. Now, fashion is everywhere we turn, Snapchat, Twitter, Pinterest, the list could go on. It seems that fashion was once an enclosed industry but now has become digitally embedded.

Back in the day, fashion was a sealed envelope, a gateway in which only the elite and fashion designers were involved with. Fashion shows were private and the trends being showcased were released to consumers months after being on the runway. Nowadays, catwalks for specific brands are live streamed on Facebook and Instagram, with Tommy Hilfiger live streaming their Gigi Hadid collection at London Fashion Week this year on Instagram to their thousands of followers.

Influencers are incredibly strategic about posting content, choosing the time of day when most people are online, and using popular hashtags to gain more likes and comments.

Gigi Gorlova, London based fashion blogger and designer, owner of Instagram account Gigiscloset’ and blog, started up her blog over four years ago and now to this date has 19.1k followers on Instagram, Gigi Said:

“To me, blogging is very personal, it’s a diary of my everyday fashion styling. Sometimes brands send you clothes and it’s fun trying to style a certain piece. For me, blogging helps me get clients as a freelance social media manager. It’s a great way to show off what you are about and if you are creative at your work.”

Because of how powerful the fashion industry has become online, brands owe much of their success to promoting their products through bloggers promoting their products online. Bloggers can get paid thousands just for showcasing a product through a photo and posting throughout their socials. Selena Gomez, for example, can earn up to £500,000 for each promotion post on her Instagram. Brands could do this through magazine advertising, but it would take more time and essentially more money; social advertising seems to be the only answer in this current digital world, offering instant access.

“I get asked to promote products often but sometimes the products do not suit my niche. I will not post about tooth whitening or any of those cliché products just for money. My niche is fashion and that’s what I’ll promote. I’ve promoted for Quiz, Motel Rocks and LaSula.”

Vogue released a very topical article in 2016, titled “Ciao, Milano!’s Editors Discuss the Week That Was”harshly shaming fashion bloggers as “Pathetic” and “Embarrassing”. Vogue writer Sally Singer stated,

“Note to bloggers who change head-to-toe, paid-to-wear outfits every hour: Please stop. Find another business. You are heralding the death of style”.

It seems that the popular fashion magazine that has been on the scene for over 123 years haven’t quite got their heads around how social media plays a vital role in the fashion industry in the 21st century.

With phones at your disposal every moment of the day, we are constantly logged onto social media platforms, unable to get away from the constant notifications. Back in the day, to get the latest news and features, one would have to visit a shop to collect a physical print, with some of these only being produced weekly or monthly.

However, it doesn’t necessarily mean to say that fashion magazines and the print industry are dead:

I personally read magazines but because they are only printed once a month I go to social media as I need more fashion inspiration daily. It’s a good idea for magazines to stay digital as well as print. I want both!” Gigi adds. Magazines still hold that appeal of holding a good quality, glossy magazine in your hands that nothing else beats. It produces monthly issues of the greatest fashion trends and celebrities that maybe hasn’t been covered on social media.

“Magazines aren’t going to disappear, people still like to have something tangible to browse – the book industry was predicted to collapse in the wake of the Kindle, but it has rebounded.” Bronwyn Cosgrave, a former features editor, says in British Vogue. (Above article).

It seems that the world is now tech-savvy, orientated around the use of social and digital media. Yes, social media has changed the fashion industry, making it current and constant 24/7. But the fashion industry lives for the publication of high-end magazines such as Vogue and Elle that it couldn’t possibly put these out of business for good.


If you fancy your hand at writing about your passions, student-related topics or subjects of global importance – why not write for the Ruskin Journal? Accepting new writers in August 2018 – send an email to to find out more or express your interest. Open to undergraduate and postgraduate students at Anglia Ruskin University.

Instagram Business Accounts – How They Are Changing Fashion

By Sophie Taylor – There are more than 15 million registered business accounts on Instagram, providing online stores, independent companies, and online personalities…

By Sophie Taylor

There are more than 15 million registered business accounts on Instagram, providing online stores, independent companies, and online personalities an invaluable place for promotion, but is this threatening retail stores in our high streets?

According to online statistics, Instagram is estimated to have made $1.53 billion in global mobile ad venue last year. Sponsored pictures are amongst the many ways of making money on the site, with reality star Kylie Jenner making up to $400,000 per ad post. However, it’s not just celebrities able to profit from the social media domain; smaller followed business accounts are able to post sponsored ads, from themes of interior design to popular pictures of a pet, there are different ad revenue opportunities for a multitude of pages that make the site more and more business orientated.

My interview with interior blogger Sam, owner of the 20,000 followed Instagram business account @dove_cottage provided me with useful answers to how the site can act as a platform for promotion and pursuing individual ambitions, whilst also expanding the audience blog visits.

My Instagram focuses on home interiors, I share styling tips for people who are interested in design but maybe have a small budget or are renting their home or first-time buyers. It’s where it all started really, I wouldn’t have been able to do it if I hadn’t started an Instagram account. Being able to connect with people who have got similar interests to me has been totally invaluable, no one would have ever found my blog without it.”

So how does advertising on Instagram affect fashion? Recent years have seen the Instagram of various clothing stores take the site by storm, with teenagers more likely to buy their weekend outfits on their phones rather than visiting stores, meaning huge retailers such as Topshop are facing increasing competition from online shops that offer faster and cheaper products.

The Instagram’s of Missguided and Prettylittlething for example, have gained major popularity amongst teenagers; The growth of Missguided’s business increased more than 60% last year, with their daily stories, posts and ‘shop our Insta’ section that promotes their products to their 2.5 million followers. Marketing techniques such as the #babesofmissguided trend have seen 121,993 posts using the hashtag, as well as Prettylittlething using reality stars instead of professional models to advertise to a younger demographic. Reality stars such as Kourtney Kardashian and the cast of this year’s love island have appeared in collaborations with clothing stores that are dominating Instagram, arguably appealing to teenagers more than Topshop and Zara’s expensive catwalk based clothing.

When I asked Sam about her views on whether social media is becoming the only way to really reach out to people, she replies:

“Yes I do, I think’s it’s becoming the number one way. When I want to buy something I go on to a stores Instagram page and look through their tagged photos to see the products being used in real life which I think can offer me better than the website photos. I think it gives shoppers a much better experience and makes online shopping more enjoyable than shopping in town. Discount codes are always online too and with me having a baby, it just makes it so much more convenient for me.”

As Sam mentions, some clothing store’s Instagram accounts ‘tagged photos’ section includes real consumers pictured wearing the stores purchased clothing. Thus, they give buyers a more realistic depiction of the products considered, with clothing pictured on an array of body types and styled in various ways not pictured on the website. Upcoming clothing stores that are heavily Instagram focused such as In The Style, keep up to date with the digital age with their frequent use of Instagram to advertise in an aesthetically pleasing way, whilst incorporating Instagram stars into their products such as Tammy Hembrow’s range released with the popular clothing retailer. In The Style is yet to have a store on the high street, with purchases made online proving to be enough to create worldwide recognition.

As an increasing amount of consumers buying clothing online and social media becoming a platform to get users onto the websites of their businesses, high street retailers are called to question how they will find new ways to appeal online to their smartphone shoppers. Instagram is taking more of a central role in advertising than ever before.

Image Credit: Adobe Stock License

Nintendo Switch Console Review

By Kiana Rad – So although the Nintendo Switch came out all the way back in March 2017, I have only just managed to get my hands on one; and do I have a lot to say about it…

By Kiana Rad

So although the Nintendo Switch came out all the way back in March 2017, I have only just managed to get my hands on one; and do I have a lot to say about it! So if you don’t already know, the Switch is the newest gaming console released by Nintendo since the Wii U and it has lots more key features added to it to make it a console for everyone. Not only is it a handheld console you can take anywhere much like many consoles Nintendo are famous for, but it also has a docking system you can plug it into for a seamless transition to playing on a television with friends and family. The two remotes that can attach and detach from the console screen can also act as two separate remotes which have similar point-and-click functioning to the classic Wii remotes. The remotes can also slide into a controller frame that comes included and be made into one classic gaming controller if that is more comfortable.

So there are many ways in which the Switch can be played but how is the functionality of the console? Well, in my opinion, it is one of the highest functioning handheld consoles on the market right now. The one negative I may express is that not a whole lot of well-known games are available to the Switch at the moment, but as there is a whole line up being announced for the upcoming year I have no doubt in my mind that this will change very soon. Besides this, the gaming experience is unlike anything else I’ve seen. Here are some key features that make it a smart gaming buy.

The Display

The Switch’s console screen is a large 6.2 inches and also includes a 1080p by 720p LCD display with added touchscreen features, making the gaming experience fully immersive and very high quality.

Battery Life

Although there have been a lot of complaints about the battery life being too short on the console, I believe that for a larger handheld console with the much larger screen and higher display quality than its predecessors it is sufficient enough. Plus for the first time, a USB-C charging port has been added to the console for a faster charge as well as more seamless connectivity to the docking system.

Easy Multiplayer  

Now, this console may not be good for people who don’t like lots of different pieces and add ons, but the two ‘joy-cons’ attached to the console having the ability to detach and become two separate remotes actually work in favour of gamers who prefer multiplayer. For the first time, we see a console that comes with a single controller when attached to the console or controller frame, and can also transform to become two smaller ready to use remotes when detached. It clearly shows that the Switch is meant to be shared.

Lots of Potential Memory Space 

A little add on which will come in very handy as your game collection grows is the ability to save game software on a micro SD card. Behind the kickstand feature is a little slot for the card and can add up to an extra 128gb of storage (if you really need it). This way you can download your physical copies on there as well as many digital downloads from the Nintendo eShop.

Take it Anywhere 

This is the most important and greatest feature by far on the Nintendo Switch. You do not have to be bound to the TV and can take the console anywhere you like and play on the go. Even with just the console screen you can play 2 player or hold the remote separate to the screen like you would on a TV if that is your preferred gaming mode. Simply pop the kickstand open and place it on a flat surface and get playing!

All in all, there aren’t very many negatives about this console at all. It works to give a high functioning and immensely fun gaming experience for everyone of all ages.

Hopefully, very soon I’ll be able to give you guys a little review on some of the most popular games out on the Switch right now but until then thanks for reading and happy gaming to you all!

Image Credit: Kiana Rad

The Dark Reality of Technology

By Beth Clark – We live in a world where technology is quite literally taking over our lives. On average we spend 2 hours a day on social media, which over our lifetime equates…

By Beth Clark

We live in a world where technology is quite literally taking over our lives. On average we spend 2 hours a day on social media, which over our lifetime equates to 5 years 4 months. From here it gets worse, in our lifetime we spend 7 years 8 months watching TV, to put this into perspective that’s more time than we spend eating and drinking. When you think about it, we can’t do much without it. Technology is relied heavily upon to make our lives run as smoothly as possible.  Due to this, there are so many things that are becoming obsolete; books, DVDs, and CDs to name a few. When you look back at all the things we used to have, there really aren’t that many that are still needed today. Over a period, all things are developed and improved upon: the record for example. This simple idea has transformed over the years, developing into the cassette and CD. While all these are still available to buy many people now use apps to listen to music.

Long gone are the days of reeling the tape back into the cassette and having to flip it over if it was really long. If you talk to children now most won’t have a clue what a tape even is. They have become so accustomed to everything being on their phone or tablet, so reliant on technology, that if for some reason technology disappeared or stopped working, would children of today even be able to entertain themselves? If we gave a group of children a tape and cassette player, I presume that most of them wouldn’t be able to figure out how to play it. Taking this into consideration if you were to give the same group of children and brand-new phone or tablet, most of them would be able to set it up by themselves and then continue to be able to download apps.

Thinking into the future, paper copies of books will also soon become an item of the past. With eBooks being more popular than ever, books will soon end up in the same place as all our old tapes and CDs, buried in a box somewhere and shoved in some dark forgotten corner. The development of eBooks is a positive thing, they are helping the environment due to no trees having to be cut down to produce them, unlike with a paper copy. As they are generally cheaper to buy, it won’t be long before the book disappears altogether.

With the internet; humans have become very lazy. There is no need to leave the comfort of your sofa, everything you could possibly need can now be ordered online. 87% of the UK has brought at least one product online in the last 12 months, with companies such as ASOS having more than a quarter increase.  Many items are becoming available online, almost every store and popular websites such as Amazon and eBay use online shopping. It will not be long before we never have to leave home again. We are now able to do everything online from food shopping to organising events. Even to do exercise we don’t need to leave our homes, games have been made to encourage exercise, and gym equipment, although expensive can be placed in a house. Leading on from this most people can now work from home, with of course the exception of some professions. With advancing computer software, we can easily contact anyone we need to. Should you need to have a conference call then programs such as Skype can be used. For education, online courses are available meaning schools and university’s will not be required.

There is a downside to everything being done on the internet and the advancement of developing technology, including potential job losses.  Once technology reaches the stage where robots can take over almost every job, we will have nothing to do. Without our jobs, we ultimately would not be able to support ourselves, which could lead to the downfall of society. Following this, assuming that paper is a thing of the past, if the internet went down nothing would be able to be done. It would be the same if phones, tablets, and computers all crashed. Without them working it would be extremely difficult to do work in society today. In fact, it would be difficult to do anything without any form of technology, so I ask you this: is it worth relying on technology so much?

Image Credit: Adobe Stock

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