Has Advancing Technology Affected Our Perception Of Time?

I can hardly believe that I’m hearing about events for Memorial Day. It seems to me that it was just Christmas! Christmas of 2010! I just saw my son’s theatre troupe performing Nutcracker Rated R at The American Theater of Actors.  That was a whole year before this year’s incredible performance at Poisson Rouge! I’m talkin’ a year and a half ago!

I’m going to be 72 in a week and I understand that as we live longer and longer we perceive time to move faster and faster. For some reason I feel that although my grandmother felt time move more quickly in her later years, I don’t get that she expressed her feeling about the passage of time in a way that made it sound quite as fast as I’m experiencing it.

I also hear more and more young men and women who are in their 20s and 30s, expressing amazement at the quick passage of time.  At 72, I perceive time to move much more quickly than they do, but they perceive it to move much more quickly than I did when I was their age. When I was in my twenties and thirties there were TGIF parties every Friday. TGIF, if you weren’t around then, stands for “Thank God It’s Friday!”  A decade later, Wednesday was considered the “hump” of the workweek. It was a thrill to have gotten over the hump!  I’m now writing this blog post and it’s Sunday evening. It will be Wednesday evening in what will seem to me like fifteen minutes. A person in their early 30s told me the same period of time seems to her like about 40 minutes. That’s still longer than three days!

Young workers today are rarely free from answering people’s needs. They’re on their computers or Smart Phones all day long answering this email or entering their opinion on this or that Linked in Group and networking for hours to make sure they have the knowledge and craft to keep the job they have and, if that job doesn’t pay as well as they need it to, climb the ladder to success.  We’re living longer and longer and I wonder if most of us who are living longer are feeling as though we’re getting all those years our grandparents, for the most part, didn’t get. Even when the contacts are semi-personal, it can feel as though the workday never ends.

On July 11, 2011 I wrote a Blog Post about the day people won’t have to work and the machines will be set up to do the work for us. This will be hundreds of years on the future; but it captures my imagination.  Do you think people who are alive in that era will feel time is passing as quickly? When the routine of work is no longer part of the day, will the day still seem to fly by? Is it the daily need to use technology and engage in Social Networking causing time to seem to fly by at a quicker pace?  I’m speaking from my own observation. I’ve found many articles on this topic; but I don’t know which have the most validity.

Might any of my readers know of valid scientific studies that have come up with a way to measure the effect that the daily sending and reading of email, participating in social media, etc. has on our perception of time? I’d very much appreciate hearing from you. Thank you, in advance, for your help.

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Published in: on May 14, 2012 at 12:30 am  Comments (2)  

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2 CommentsLeave a comment

  1. I wanted to be among the first to wish you an early Happy Birthday.

  2. Bless you Larry!!!!!!!!!!!!!!


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