Doctor Damian Carpenter
English Composition I
15 October 2018
Over the years technology has changed our conception of the world. We live in a time, where technology has made our lives more easier and simple, than ever before. It certainly can be a good thing, but is it sometimes a bad thing?
Judith Newman writes in her essay about her autistic son who has became best friends with Apple’s I phone voice controlled personal assistant app Siri .She opens up first saying she kind of feels guilt but yet is being grateful by letting her autistic son be best friends with Siri. She argues that Siri is just not a another device but really good learning tool for autistic people, especially for her son as it educates and encourages polite language use and keeps endless conversations about his obsessions. A good example of how Siri teaches Gus being polite would be the following part from the article: “She is also wonderful for someone who doesn’t pick up on social cues: Siri’s responses are not entirely predictable, but they are predictably kind — even when Gus is brusque. I heard him talking to Siri about music, and Siri offered some suggestions. “I don’t like that kind of music,” Gus snapped. Siri replied, “You’re certainly entitled to your opinion.” Siri’s politeness reminded Gus what he owed Siri. “Thank you for that music, though,” Gus said. Siri replied, “You don’t need to thank me.” “Oh, yes,” Gus added emphatically, “I
do.” “Using Siri has made Judith’s son much more social and has had long conversations with her mother, something that was not to be before.
To think of if this article being either an Ethos, Logos or Pathos, I would definitely have to say that the article is mostly a Pathos type of a writing as the writer uses a lot of emotions to describe his son’s relationship with the Apple I phone. However, some parts of Logos are present in this writing as well- the writer brings up a lot of real life experiences that probably many readers can relate with.
If we question is technology sometimes a bad thing, then we should take a closer look to the article “Is Google Making Us Stupid?” by Nicholas Carr. Carr describes his life as a writer and how the overflow and accessibility of information has made him lazier. This article is a perfect example of a Logos and Ethos type of writing- formal and deep into scientific facts and researches. Carr uses those researches in order to prove his point that technology (in this case, the Internet) is not making people dumber – but lazier, surely and thanks to his countless citations to different researches, other writer’s experiences we can certainly see the truth in his words. “In one experiment conducted at Cornell University, for example, half a class of students was allowed to use Internet-connected laptops during a lecture, while the other had to keep their computers shut. Those who browsed the Web performed much worse on a subsequent test of how well they retained the lecture’s content. While it’s hardly surprising that Web surfing would
distract students, it should be a note of caution to schools that are wiring their classrooms in hopes of improving learning.”