Letter: Will we be left with a generation of lost minds?

Ron Chonner has written in, concerned about the young people who might fall ever-further behind in our increasingly digital world.

children-having-fun-visit-greenwich

We always welcome a Letter to the Editor to share with our readers, this one from Lake resident, Ron Chonner. Ed


Dear Editor

With Christmas close upon us, I write to draw the attention of your readers to the plight of the many children who will not be receiving that longed-for ipad this Noel; will not become the proud possessors of a mobile telephone on which to text their mates.

Children who have never, and will never, experience the joys of indulging themselves and indeed competing against those same young friends in one or more of those nowadays essential Internet games. Will not only not have a TV set of their own to play on, but in extreme cases may even have to share the sole laptop computer in the household. And will not, as a result, feel free to indulge themselves as they should in the mind-expanding delights of Facebook and Twitter.

A blessing in disguise
I know that to many of the older generation reading this, doing without the many electronic items available today will seem unimportant – even a blessing in disguise. But I think we must bear in mind that being deprived of a Playstation now, is the exact equivalent of us, in our youth, going without a football or cricket bat.

Such children will no doubt be visible in the days following their desolate Yuletide, aimlessly kicking a ball about in some local open space, perhaps playing a wistful game of cricket, or simply wandering about in the cold air of winter.

While their more fortunate fellows remain snugly indoors, happily expanding their imaginations as they watch the latest war game unfold in full living colour (Colour far more vivid incidentally, than anything those left abandoned will ever enjoy).

Breeding a generation of lost minds
I confess I do not know what the solution might be. I only know we are breeding a generation of lost minds.

Minds that may never blog, or even e-mail.

Minds that will fall ever further behind in our increasingly digital world.

Image: Visit Greenwich under CC BY 2.0

Monday, 24th December, 2012 12:52pm

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9 Comments

  1. watchdog's comment is rated +3 Vote +1 Vote -1

    24.Dec.2012 1:54pm

    Are you pulling our leg, Ron ? How about giving them a Library Card for Christmas ? That’s if they can find a library to use it in, of course.

    Reply
  2. JamesP's comment not rated yet. Add your vote Vote +1 Vote -1

    24.Dec.2012 2:03pm

    OK – name me a child over 12 without a mobile phone.

    I realise (hope!) you were being ironic, but it’s just another version of what we used to call the generation gap. Leaving one’s parents behind, by whatever means, was always a prime objective, I think…

    Reply
  3. Old Knobby's comment not rated yet. Add your vote Vote +1 Vote -1

    24.Dec.2012 7:47pm

    I saw the best minds of my generation destroyed by madness, starving hysterical naked, dragging themselves through the negro streets at dawn looking for an angry fix…

    Reply
  4. prewitt parrot's comment not rated yet. Add your vote Vote +1 Vote -1

    24.Dec.2012 8:55pm

    What I suspect you consider to be the lucky few treated to the opportunity of your traditional pursuits Ron are in fact the many whose parents cant afford an iPhone or whatever expensive gadget is expected of them as a passage into the rat race of consumerism, which is an out of control fact of life and indeed Christmas. This deprivation, along with the social stigma accompanying it, may be the catalyst of entrepreneurship for a few but most will languish in the despair of humiliation and can look forward to being bullied because they haven’t got a £300 gadget which needs to be upgraded to the latest incarnation annually.

    Reply
  5. lilly's comment is rated +4 Vote +1 Vote -1

    25.Dec.2012 1:48pm

    ‘Moments’ are what our lives are made of. Gadgets all have a sell by date. Technology has become a sort of adult ‘dummy’ – keep us quiet, occupied with trivia. Children can enjoy ‘moments’ without technology just like everyone else. Technology is full of broken connections, such as where the raw materials come from and at what cost, and how they’re disposed of, the effect on ourselves, our physical and psychological health and on other creatures that inhabit this planet with us. Technology is a poor substitute for moments spent exploring the real world.

    Reply
  6. Callum's comment is rated +3 Vote +1 Vote -1

    25.Dec.2012 6:26pm

    I think the letter written is more moronic than ironic. I’m afraid in today’s technological world, owning a mobile phone or laptop is second to none. True, the value of owning something ‘earnt’ may have been lost. Whether that was the point of your letter, I don’t really know. On the other hand, this year my family have decided to give a portion of money towards a kindle and a camera. Whilst the individual pays for the rest. This way they understand the value of money. ‘Moments’ can still be explored. I Skype my family on a regular basis when on the mainland as well as speaking to my friends abroad. Technology’s a wonderful thing. But should be used with everything else. It depends on your background also.

    Reply
  7. cynic's comment is rated +2 Vote +1 Vote -1

    28.Dec.2012 3:46pm

    Perhaps the alleged “lost minds” will be the saving of future generations as they will not become asocial resulting from spending hours in the solitary seclusion of their bedrooms playing computer games.

    Their “loss” might be society’s gain.

    Reply
  8. playingthenumbers's comment is rated +3 Vote +1 Vote -1

    29.Dec.2012 9:44am

    No, no, no! – the medium is not the message. Besides your not recognising the advantages of being liberated from tech. Value that freedom, it may prove to be the counter weight in a society of knuckle dragging repetition and oppressive corporate tyranny, seriously.

    Of course minds should understand the tools, but one should be concerned that focusing too much time on existing technology is time wasted on what is already ‘old hat’. What about creating the new?

    Moreover, I’m not sure that training every brain with process orientation will result in the creativity we all need and have enjoyed. Even the Apollo 11 moon landing initially required political inspiration, imagination & dreamers, problem solvers & technicians. The computer guidance system had just 2k of ram & capable of multi tasking a maximum of 8 tasks, at 1.024 MHz – it was really the software of AGC that was wonderful.

    For a peek into a future where the human brain is wired up to maximise its computing power, try William Gibson’s Neuromancer.

    Reply
  9. Better Red than Bled's comment not rated yet. Add your vote Vote +1 Vote -1

    11.Jan.2013 11:05pm

    Never fear, Many a lost mind has managed a political career on the Island. In fact there are current examples to aspire to.

    Reply

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