I believe on some level it has helped, such as artists with getting their shit out, but more often, it has been a burden, since it makes it harder for people to communicate, as well as form real life friendships. No matter how much technology has advanced, it will never be a substitute for actual human contact.
I think this question is so subjective that it is almost impossible to answer, because who is the world?
I think that it benefited the 'world' of humans, because it allowed us to grow as a species. However, our inventions have hurt the physical world (inventions such as cars, or any kind of transportation) and it has also affected other species.
To say if it 'worsened' it, I don't know.
We will never really know since most of us have only ever lived in a time that there were cars...
I think it has provided much easier access to information. Especially the iphone, w/ the built-in screen reader. I love being able to have books read to me via my phone. I can get thru so much more material now. Yay! I also love email, apps, texting, and facebook. Oh. And online dating sites. Makes it a lot easier to meet ppl when one doesn't go to bars.
Technology and the human world have a paradoxical relationship, I might say. Well, I am saying it, but nevertheless... back to what I was talking about.
What came first? The chicken, or the egg? [the egg] The outside or inside of a spiral?
Each time humans create new technology, it is most likely to solve problems we already have. The technologies usually fix the problems we try to solve, but then cause even more problems. So, in the end, technology does us some good, but harms us whether we have it or not.
Get my drift here? It's pretty ironic, isn't it? I'd give examples, but I'm never good at that, so I'll just leave this as is.
Technology makes jobs easier and if you need to remind yourself about something you can just put it in your phone and it will remind you. But also technology is making people unsocial and lazy. Now people just sit around and play on the computer or ipod or ipad instead of go out and be active.
There are pros and cons, obviously: the pros are seemingly endless, ranging from the lightbulb to the smart phone, and all the things they alone have done to advance our way of living. Just in the past few years alone, we are seeing a lot of change all across the world (good and bad) thanks to the advent of the social networks born of the internet and telecommunications systems. My neighbor can all but ignore his 4 year old son because the boy is endlessly entertained through one media device or another, right down to his dad's smart phone; a device the boy works better than I could if for no other reason than I don't have one.
Let's keep with the kid, though, as I transition to the 'Cons', like his father leaving his son to all but be raised on these devices, and he is just my example based upon the countless children I've personally seen and the rest I've only heard or read about that are being practically raised by these devices. I'm not too quick to blame the parents, since the world seems to have transitioned from raising an independent, moral, ethical, disciplined, and well rounded child to coddling them so as not to upset their delicate sensitivities because they are litigiously scared of their own shadow when it comes to control and punishment. It seems now the parent's job is simply to keep the child fed, well groomed, and out of jail; to keep up appearances, as it were, yet accomplishing nothing more than raising their spoiled brat into being a spoiled adult. Then, when life (which isn't so afraid of it's own legal shadow) kicks that child in the nuts with a cold rejection, or a humbling job, they can't handle it because they are unprepared for it, and that adult child jumps the rails, sometimes walking into a mall with a shot gun.
This is just one of many ways I see in which technology has spoiled us, and making us lazy. Why go over to someone's house when you can simply text them? texting is the laziest level of communicatiion there is; it allows nearly complete emotional irresponsibility for what is said. example? dumping someone via text versus face to face. even compared to a phone conversation, it lacks all the awkwardness and related guilt. This of course is just one small example meant to help paint a larger picture, but let's look at other ways tech has hurt us as a people.
Infastructure is another. where once was a library full of books, now there is a kendle, or related digital book format. You once had a huge industry to produce these books, from the lumberman, paper recyclers, printers, and binders, to the publishers, writers, and book stores that sold them. Now you have a smart phone factory in china, some UPS drivers, and boutique stores. sure, there are environmental concerns for both, but you can't argue with the fact that the older way of doing things required more manpower, which resulted in less joblessness.
technology lead to automation, which means the full office staff, and factory full of labor that got us through the industrial age, can now be done by a talented office manager, some readily available office software, and a machine that can be run by one man, but produce that of ten.
Technology has also lead to advances in medical sciences, which has not only improved fraternal rates, but reduced infant mortality drastically, allowing for the population growth to boom; meaning we make more people every year then we did the year before, while losing less. If you combine this with the advent of automation and technology, you get an exponentially increasing gap between work that needs doing, and the number of available workers to do it. As an unemployed engineer, I pay close attention to these statistics, and just this morning the number I heard was 4 people for every available job. Out sourcing sure didn't help this, but I think this too will moderate itself thanks to popular opinion, and the unforseen complications and logistics of such distances.
As I said, I'm an engineer by trade, with no where to work, but even in my field alone this comparison of population to automation was quickly evident when you compared the workforce requirements before and after the advent of Auto CAD (computer aided drafting). what once took a group of guys weeks to draw up now took one guy days to draw up on the computer, with half the needed knowlege because the computer handled many of the tougher computations. Now take two dimensional CAD, and compare it to the modern three dimensional modeling programs, and you can nearly double it again, thanks to leaps forward in element analisis, and tech. You can now design and build products, as well as run them through stress tests before you ever physically make a part- the amount of research, developement, and wasted resources this cuts down on is staggering when compared to the way things were done just a few decades ago. You then compare that to how many more people are in the world now than were there then, and the problem becomes evident.
For me, technology and it's potentials are no different than any other vice: best handled in educated, and controled moderation. Unfortunately, such self control seems to be rare these days, and growing more and more scarce. I fear for our future, as we try and fully cope with the true depths in which technology has and will change our lives all across the globe. We are only just beginning to see the signs with political and social turmoil- with uprisings, and power structure shifts all in the name of freedom and the iphone.
Technology's benefited the world because it's let us get in touch with others quicker, but it's worsened the world because it makes us too dependant on having our answers instantly and made us think that everything we had before iPods and iPhones and Kindles are ancient.
Do you really want to me to answer that? REALLY???
Pretty much made it a small world. I can't say it just worsened it yet it didn't just benefited it either. But the best things about it are the information reach and connection with others. I never felt this close with people before, even when you live miles away from me, I can always find them with a click of mouse or press of button. In the same time, it did make things worse but all depends on how people use it.
In my shortest answer: I think it's a bit of both really. On one hand, we need Technology to further advance in the future and businesses. On the Other, it's both partly runing and ruining our society mainly due to the fact that we suddenly have to depend on it a lot more than we did say, 5 or even 3 years ago. The whole dynamic has changed while we're all busy to catch up with it, and not really taking the time to look at what our country and society has become. Unless you're the type that does. I like Technology (heck, I would probably even condone it to most people) and where it's gotten us this far, I think there's still a lot more room for improvement to be made, but sometimes I think it's just that which tends to create a problem. You upgrade a million things just so you can basically rush out and grab the newest model to replace that old one you just spent half your paycheck on and into the manufacturers pocket. No kidding...I'm not saying EVERYTHING is going to turn out bad. But that's up to you, which is eactly how most people like it.
The real thing is also that it's opening up an even bigger path for cyber bullying, among other bad problems and habits and making it easier for hacking and whatnot.
IMO, you either take the good with the bad, or don't at all. Will it continue to get better and evolve untill it can't anymore? Not an easy answer. Will we still continue to use it our own way no matter what the consequences? Most likely, yes.
End rant/debate, lol.