Book Review: Smart Phones Dumb People?
Information technology and exploration of its hallowed portals are the mantras of the present perfect. There are both pros and cons of getting high–tech. The ordinary mobile phones have got upgraded to smart phones. But given the fact that we have gone more tech-savvy with each passing day, Smart Phones Dumb People? – Using 21st Century Tools To Address 19th Century Issues by Parthajeet Sarma, puts forward the quite pertinent question: Have we become less intelligent? Have we become dumber? The main focus of the book lies in the advancement and impact of modern technology onto our lives.
The author writes that the fruits of mechanization like smartphones and tablets act as consumption tools for the modern consumer. He has reiterated the importance of innovation in modern information technology. He puts forward observations, which are later corroborated and substantiated by and through definitive examples.
When the author states that, “I am a big fan of free markets, and like many others, take pride in India’s elevated position on a global platform”, we see rays of hope and promise. Sarma is an award–winning innovator and entrepreneur. He has a degree in Architecture from Sir J.J. College of Architecture and later on , an MBA , on his personal coffers. Which is why he later turned to the building industry. He has reiterated the glaring fact that most of our rural population of our country eke out a living without the benefit of basic amenities like clean water, housing, education and healthcare. In our country, there is a need to build a balanced ecosystem where healthy living at every stage of the pyramid is allowed and tolerated. It is with the help of technology that we can bridge the urban-rural divide. Being an entrepreneur himself, the author has stressed on the role of these individuals who are, ‘catalysts for social change’ in our country. He has urged more women to regard entrepreneurship as a viable career option. “Entrepreneurship is somewhat akin to travelling to a weekend gateway on your own motorbike, as against travelling in a comfortable air-conditioned bus.”
Parthajeet Sarma does not forget to mention the crusades of people like Anna Hazare and Arvind Kejriwal, whose political party has taken up ‘brooms‘ to fight against the rampant corruption. In the final analysis, in the author’s own words which form the concluding sentence of the book, before his Epilogue, “After all, we are smarter than our smart phones!” The book has been constructed and conceived on the lines of an argument. The author has posed questions, sought answers and has an interesting conclusion to offer at the end of the book. Even though the book is punitive in terms of its numbered pages, it has some very enlightening insights to offer to the reader. The fact that the author is conversant with the ways of the world, becomes apparent when one reads the book.
A book to recommend to others, who are too engrossed in reading and getting enveloped by the genre of make–believe fiction.
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