The future is here and it is ever changing, ever present and full of technological advances that boggle the mind. In the past 100 years we have seen huge technological advances in medicine, in computers, in robotics, in transportation and much more. In the past 1000 years we have seen huge advancements in education, the scientific method, literacy, and yet we still lack the knowledge to build the Great Pyramid of Giza - not because we are unable to move rocks that big, but because we still cannot figure out how the Egyptians cut the rocks so perfectly that you cannot even slide a piece of paper between two of the large rocks.
This shows that regardless of our level of technology we still have much to learn.
Computer Chips getting Smaller, not much Faster
So in recent years you may have noticed that computer processors have really just gotten smaller and aren't that much faster. What is the reason for this slow down? Learn more by reading Next Gen Computer Processors, plus read our old article "Chipzilla Tukwila".
As technology grows, so do cities - and the need for cities to become more technologically advanced. The Future of Condo Complexes tackles the problem of making cities more compact and convenient, wherein people work and live in the same huge structures.
Blu Ray Disc Boycott
Technology and Cheating: Are students not capable of the work or are they just not interested in doing it?
By D. E. Liam
Education has changed in many ways over the years. The university in Toronto that I went to just 10 years ago is vastly different than it is now. Tuition has gone up at most universities where there is not government-imposed cap (which is most places excluding Quebec). The stakes seem to be getting higher and higher as often the investment you put into your education may not necessarily pay off in a good job when you are done. Teachers are affected by these changes too. Teaching has changed from the one-size fits all method to one that is more individualized - which means you need a smaller ratio of teachers to students. At the same time teachers are making less money but school administration costs are going up.
Students have to adjust to the new changes in education and find ways to succeed despite them. At the same time students are finding more and more ways to cheat nowadays too. And more and more of them see nothing wrong with it. With all the changes in the world what exactly has cause this change in behaviour in students? Are students not capable of the work or are they just not interested in doing it?
Well, if you asked the students they would probably blame it on everything but themselves. But I have a sneaking suspicion that there are a few reasons that play a part including: students can cheat easier now (technology enables it), students feel pressure to succeed (the stakes are higher) and because students suffer from a bad case of procrastination (technology itself is a distraction).
They Can Do It
The Internet and computer technology was just becoming ubiquitous and was just beginning to change the way students learned. Back in the 1990s cheating using the Internet was possible but often not the most used way to cheat. Instead you were better off asking if your friends know anyone or hunkering down with some Cliff’s Notes (that is if you were willing to spend the cash). Now the means to cheat are at a student’s fingertips. You are just a point and click away (and possibly your credit card) from having your 20 page English essay completed for you.
For instance, students can easily find large passages online that they can copy and paste into their essay. The hardest part is probably the Googling (which is pretty darn easy). But doing so is a huge disservice to the student. Instead of reflecting on the topic students are not even thinking about it at all and robbing themselves of the opportunity to learn, which is why they are there in the first place. Also, a teacher can arm himself or herself with the same technology the students use to catch their cheating students. Programs allow teachers to search for stolen passage on the net with a simple click. So it may not even be worth it in the first place.
The Stakes Are High
But, technology is not the only difference that exists now. Schools are demanding more and more from the students. Competition is high and a lot of money is at stake on all levels. Universities and Colleges want the best and brightest coming to them to boost their prestige so they can in turn boost their tuition fees. They want their student to demonstrate bigger and more complex skills. Simply answering the question is not enough they want you to innovate, create and extrapolate. Some students are just not up to snuff, but that does not keep them from trying and doing what they have to do to stay ahead.
For instance, students often cheat because they want to get into the best program. Although it seems like a great idea to do whatever you need to do to get your foot in the door, students often do no think about what happens after they get in. If you did not do the work necessary to succeed in that program you will not definitely not do well in that program.
Technology Is A Distraction
Also, the lives of young people have changed so much. They seem to have less and less time now days. With constant connectivity college students are always aware and planning their social lives. It used to be that you could only communicate with one friend over the phone. At most you would see your friend at school during class or after school to hang out. Now you can be connected to thousands of friends at any moment in time and you can be contact no matter where you are. This is exceptionally time consuming and students often complain of there not being enough time in the day to do everything. The last thing students want to do is cut out their social lives so often academics can suffer.
For instance, take one of the essay writing websites that are available on the web. These are phenomena that did not exist just 15 years ago, but now proliferate the web. Testimonials on the website list various reasons why people they choose to use the service and how good the service was. They often say that they had familial obligations or they say that they just didn’t have the time (read too busy living). Although I can sympathize with having a busy life that still is not excuse for passing on other people work for your own. Students are violating an honour code established by their school whose punishment could include their expulsion. They know the consequences and the gravity of their actions but choose to violate them anyway because it is easier.
Tech Savvy Teens More Active than Adults
By Charles Moffat - March 2008.
It is adults, not teenagers who are more plugged in to the internet. Teenagers are twice as likely to be more active physically with respect to sports and exercise than adults, and spend less time on the internet than the average adult or senior.
Teenagers are not as tech savvy as we think they are according to a new Ipsos Reid study. They may stay up late, download music mp3s, play their music loud, but teenagers spend less time per week online on average than adults do.
The study by Ipsos Reid was released yesterday surveyed 1,272 kids age 12 to 17 and 1,041 adults, and found that teenagers ages 12 to 17 spend only an average of 13 hours a week online. Teens sometimes spend their time online multi-tasking by simultaneously watching TV, doing homework or talking on their cellphones while surfing the net or answering emails. Adults however (ages 18 to 100+) however spend an average of 19 hours per week online, either when they are at home or at work.
A large aspect of this is actually seniors over the age of 55 whom are the 2nd most frequent users of the internet (the most frequent is the 35 to 55 age group). Slightly less than 50% of seniors in North America use the internet, but those that do are usually online for 20 or more hours per week.
In contrast 87% of teenagers use the internet, but do so for an average of 13 hours per week, and usually just to check email, do homework, watch some videos and maybe download porn. Most teenagers still don't have a computer in their bedrooms (although it is increasingly becoming the norm) and many parents try to keep the computer in the family room or a den so they can keep an eye on what their kids are doing.
For myself I work online during my day job plus I have numerous responsibilities for this website, so I am on the internet 50 to 60 hours per week, and most of it is boring HTML code work. No surprise it is likely the people who spend 100 or more hours online per week who are really boosting the percentages for adults.
The study also found teenagers focus on a limited number of activities such as chatting, downloading music or playing games. Many teenagers aren't comfortable navigating much beyond that and aren't fluent in issues like privacy and security. The survey shows that "we can't assume every teen is an early adopter or a tech-savvy user," said Steve Mossop, president of market research for Ipsos Reid in Western Canada.
World Stats for Internet Use
The United States still leads the world with the highest number of internet users (now up to 212 million) and an increasing number of which who have broadband connections (58 million). China is now 2nd place and has tonnes of room to grow (162 million users including 35 million with broadband). Japan, Germany and India are currently 3rd, 4th and 5th places with India also rising fast.
Interesting Tidbit: Obesity rates in the United States are also skyrocketing, tripling in the last 20 years. In China the obesity rate has doubled in the last 15 years. In Japan obesity rates have jumped 50% in the last 10 years. Germany and India have also seen a shocking rise in obesity rates. Whether this is connected to more people spending time on the internet is unknown.
In the United States the number of adults who participate in 1 or more sports or active recreation has fallen by 48% in the last 10 years and Canada also has seen a similar drop in adults who participate in sports.
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