My Earliest Technology Memory

Among many ‘first time’ experiences of encountering technology, the most shocking and intriguing memory is without a doubt about the time when I became a member of a online discussion forum in late 1990’s. Prior to that, I had heard about the internet and related things like chatting and online one-on-one card game (I actually did some chatting and game before; but it was not that fun). Later, by the time the internet became a bit faster than before, I found an English website where users exchange their opinions on several issues. The website was in a kind of infant mode of the public websites which would come later. Very unorganized. Very anti user-friendly. No privacy protection policy. Verbal abuses uncensored. Against all these backdrops that could have turned them down, people, however, still were willing to stay there to talk to and with each other (of course, much of them were nothing more than racist and sexist remarks). People were telling their uncensored and unedited stories, views and emotions, which truly amazed me (even if the things they were speaking often were ugly and certainly not for my political and ethical tastes). One time, I got involved in a fight between two males who called each other by racial remarks. I took one’s side because the other one started it altogether and pushed the person I sided with to that ugly fight. Then, it became all about me and that person and lasted for several weeks, during which my English improved itself a lot.:P




Avoiding the Use of the Internet

Make a blog entry focusing on these questions.

How successful were you at going Tech/Literacy free for a day?

-> I failed twice, the first for communication emergency and the second out of my personal obsession with checking out email.

What was the hardest thing about trying to go Tech/Literacy free?

-> Resisting my snow-balling paranoia that I should be missing something very important without checking email.

How did your friends/family respond to you do the task?

-> In fact, they didn’t notice it at all.

What was the short term impact on you of doing this task?

-> My cooking without seeing recipes online went pretty bad.

Was there any long term impact on you?

-> I will probably try to become a bit more “analogue” and less “digital” just in case I don’t have access to the internet which can happen any time.

Did going Tech/Literacy free cause you to get more physically active or less? Why?

-> Not much different this time.

What did you miss the most while you were going Tech/Literacy free?

-> Checking email as well as recipes.

What did you miss the least?

-> News about the world outside Indiana.

I asked you to keep a simple journal about your experiences. Please review those entries and discuss something of interest that you wrote down.

-> I realized that many basic aspects of my life are dependent on the internet.

Overall, what did you think of this experience?

-> It was a good experience and I will do it again, using different definitions of technology (i.g. spending a day without using gas oven and microwave).



Avoiding the Use of the Internet

Location: My residence

Time: 6am to 6pm on Sunday, September 25


I disconnected my three devices (the laptop, the tablet and the smartphone) from the internet. Actually, I turned off and put away the tablet and the phone. A nice start. I will only read and write on my laptop.


I am already wondering about what email I would have got from Dr. Hanauer. I couldn’t get rid of thinking about the email from him. Is this a withdrawal symptom or just a legitimate, academic concern?


I am trying to assure myself that checking email after 6pm would not jeopardize my academic performance this semester. In the meantime, I found myself unconsciously trying to check the weather forecast app on Window 10 which requires the internet connection. Since the connection was off, I couldn’t and didn’t have access to the app. Instead, I observed the sky more carefully than usual.


I had an appointment with my neighbors at 9am. I went outside to meet them but I couldn’t find both of them at all. Much surprised by this unexpected situation, I ran up to my laptop, restored the internet connection and sent an instant message to them to which they responded right away. 1st violation of the tech-free rule.


I was outside the house without any electronic device. But seeing other people use the internet made think about Hanauer email once again.


I am back home. Now I will make egg-fried fish for my friends. As usual, I’d like to check recipes online but I can’t. I have only myself to depend on in this cooking process.


Egg-fried fish turned out to be of much lower quality than expected. I can’t stop thinking that I could have done better with the recipes found online. Also, this sense of failure somehow strengthened the desire of checking email.


After trying to fight against my paranoia (“Dr. Hanauer must have sent something serious about my work via email; at this point, I better be safe than sorry, so let’s check the email!”), I finally gave up. I logged onto my account and found an email from Dr. Hanauer that had arrived around 11am. In his email, there were some suggestions for revision, completing of which would require a couple of hours. Still, 2nd violation of the tech-free rule.


I already broke the tech-free rule twice today. I don’t want to do that anymore. I will focus on revising my work, without using the internet.


I brought several paperback books from the library just in case I need reference in my revision. This time, my guess was right; without these paperback references prepared beforehand, I would have had to break the tech-free rule again or just wait until 6pm, making no progress in my work.


Doing my revision without using the internet at all.


Finished my revision around 5:30 and waiting for 6pm to come.


At 6pm, I sent my revision to Dr. Hanauer and got his response half an hour later.

Time Travel & Technology

Primary Blog Question: When compared, the two film clips help illuminate a key question for this course: How has our relationship to technology changed over time?

Response: There are a couple of things about technology nowadays.

  1. New technologies first tend to put people out of their jobs. But they also create new, different job opportunities.
  2. New technologies allow us to save our time on specific tasks. But they also create new, different tasks. Or with such saved time, we are asked or ask ourselves to do other tasks.
  3. Some people welcome new technologies more aggressively while others do so more passively. Some even choose not to use those technologies at all.

Secondary Blog Questions

How has film technology changed?


It did change a lot.

How have we changed as film viewers?

Technologies lead us to different expectations about a film we are about to watch. For example, I know some people who went to a 4D theater and buy an expensive ticket to see a movie (i.g. Avatar) only because of their interest into the technological part of the movie.

How has our understanding of time evolved?


How does fiction/science fiction impact our relationship to technology?