Breaking Down Barriers Through The Use Of Technology

Feb 01, 2011
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I never cease to be amazed by the opportunities that technology provides.  Things that were once thought to be impossible are made possible.  Limits and boundaries are destroyed – walls come crashing down – new doors are opened, sometimes faster than we know how to handle.  The world today is different than it was even yesterday.  What’s often so exciting about new technology is that it eliminates so many restrictions that we place on each other – with the help of technology, people are able to challenge stereotypes and boldly show the world that they are capable and valuable and do not belong in the background.  Having said that, I believe that technology is far from the only answer to the many problems of discrimination and social isolation encountered in society today.  Our value should not defined by what we are able to do.  Each one of us is worth so much more than that!  Despite this, technology still remains an important piece of the puzzle and continues to help us move forward.   Of course, it takes a while for new technology to be brought to the level that the average consumer can use and afford it, but once that happens – watch out!

So many stories in this blog are perfect examples of this.  Here are just a few of the more recent postings:

All of these thoughts were triggered by a story I read this morning.  This past weekend at the Daytona International Speedway, a man who has been legally blind since age 5 (and had always assumed that he would never sit behind the wheel) drove a car around the track independently…with the help of some ground-breaking technology.

This is my favorite quote from the story, given by the individual who developed the technology:

“We said, ‘Hey, we already have a fully-autonomous vehicle, how difficult would it be to put a person inside?'” Hong said. “We couldn’t have been more wrong. They did not want a vehicle to drive a blind person around. They wanted a vehicle that a blind person could make active decisions in and actually drive the vehicle. So we had to start from scratch.”

That’s the goal, right?  Not for technology to just do things for people, but for people to be empowered and given new opportunities through technology.

You can read the story on your own and form your own opinions about this particular type of technology   – all I know is that stories like this continue to challenge me to never settle and to never doubt what is possible.

Author: Carolyn



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