Emails, messages and texts trickle into your life in a steady, inexhaustible stream. At work and at home, machines and gadgets demand constant attention.Do you check it constantly for messages, or social media pings? When was the last time you remember leaving it off? Do you take your phone out the moment you have a wait on your hands, or a queue to stand in?Do you feel anxious, nervous or restless if you're in a no wi-fi or no phone signal area?
We have become cyborgs, fused with our machines, plugged continuously into the Internet, connecting to the world and each other through a 24/7 freeway of social media platforms which include networking and blogging sites, image and video sharing sites, personal broadcasting and collaboration tools, widgets, social bookmarking and news aggregation and of course, virtual worlds and virtual reality platforms.Switch off the phone and all other electronic devices for several hours. Be aware that if you're used to being constantly connected, you will experience some anxiety the first time you try this.In these days of Facebook and Twitter, people feed off and thrive on display.For many older people, consumer technology is still regarded for the most part as augmentative; that is, something that enhances a chosen lifestyle and its tasks, functioning as an 'aid' rather than a 'driver'.For the 'Generation Z' who have grown up using and being surrounded by such technology, however, 'personal tech' is a way of life.
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On the extreme end of this trajectory, a Gen Zer's personality and self-worth may be enmeshed in their social media and their reception -- if they get many 'likes', it gives them a 'high'.