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Human ingenuity will WIN Over Gadgets by Perkal

"Technology has brought us so many gadgets to do our work. One of these gadgets is the computer. It can be so confusing and frustrating, but it can do so many tasks for us that we no longer need to worry about our lack of knowledge or ability. I am sure many children could rationalize their lack of studying by using technology as an excuse. After all, they might say, the computer has a spell check and can check my spelling.

Our governments, school boards and parents want to update the school buildings and programs to include the latest in technological innovations to help our children learn. These innovations may be wonderful as tools to help learning take place, but they will never take the place of good old-fashioned knowledge.

Ah, but does the computer check your word usage? Remember all those spelling and English lessons about word usage that you found so boring? I've decided to put the computer to the test. I am going to write a little story for you.

The Deer Hunt

My friend and eye went hunting. We had herd that for dear were inn the field near the slew. When we arrived, we saw a heard of ate dear. They were all mail dear.

It was a grate day until the wind blue and blue vary hard. Then my knows smelled a vary strong skunk cent. My friend saw too skunks with there tales inn the air. We sat quietly until a long eared hair hopped buy and distracted the skunks.

Relieved, now we could wait for the dear again. As we waited, my friend and eye talked about hour homes. He said that he wood repair the would on his deck. A large bored wood be enough would to repair his deck facing the see. A blew flag and a flour bed wood decorate the yard buy the deck.

Since we hadn't seen any dear four a long time, we eight hour lunch of fore sandwiches and too pickles. We had two shoe all the flies away from hour lunch. The day was vary long and we became board. We decided to wok around the slew to the big bail of hay. We herd an owl hoot; the knight must bee coming and eye had a pane inn my leg, so we decided two drive back two the in where we were staying.

Now I have used the spell check and it said that everything was OK. How wonderful to have this computer to do my work for me. Now my story is ready to be put into print.

As you have probably discovered, this story is full of words that are spelled correctly, but the word usage is wrong. The computer can correct the spelling, but it is only a machine and cannot know how my words are used. It cannot know my intent or the meaning of my writing.

All the newfangled gadgets created throughout human history to do work for us did not take the place of human ingenuity and knowledge. The abacus was a newfangled gadget at one time but now is only used in few places and is an antique in American society. The mechanical adding machines and typewriters were wonderful inventions in history, but now are antiques. Then came the electric calculators and typewriters that are now discarded junk, replaced by the computer.

We now have computers, cell phones and palm pilots that will some day be discarded junk or antiques. Some of the first computers are already collector items.

Human ingenuity and knowledge learned well from experience and education will never be replaced by gadgets; after all, gadgets were invented by man. The written word may have been the greatest invention of man to pass for history.

All the new innovations and technological gadgets are only tools to help in learning. We still need humans to pass on experiences, and students who are willing to study and learn word usage, as well as spelling. To keep our world growing, only the human ingenuity will win out in the end.

When decisions are made about our education systems today, don't forget that the teachers and students are the primary focus, not all the latest gadgets."

This article was published on Sunday 17 December, 2006.

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