W: Hi, Tim. Are you playing on your smartphone again?
M: Yeah, sorry, Sharon...just doing something on my smartphone.
W: I can see that. But are you waiting for a call?
M: No, I just carry it with me at all times. Where I go, the phone goes. No phone? No me.
W: OK, but why do you need your phone so much?
M: Why? What if I need to go somewhere? How will I find my way? What about the weather? will it rain today? I need to know these things.
男: 為什么? 如果我要去別的地方怎么辦? 我怎樣才能找到路? 天氣怎么樣? 今天會下雨嗎? 我需要知道這些事情。
W: Why don't you just look up in the sky and see if it is cloudy?
M: Look up to see if it is going to rain? I have an app, and my app tells me the weather... and this one does all the maths I need... and here's one for translations...
W: OK, I get the point. Your smartphone is just like a mini-computer.
M: Exactly. But I need my computer as well. 1 rely on my smartphone when I am out, but in dormitory, l use my computer more often.
W: I can see you are very excited about computers, but do you know when the first commercial desktop computer was produced?
M: Yes, it was produced by an Italian company and presented at an event in New York in 1965.
W: And since then, our life has been changed dramatically by computers.
M: Yes, I can hardly imagine my life without computers.
W: But I've read a book which says computers might cause problems.
M: Problems? Yes, they cause problems when they crash.
W: In his book The Glass Cage, Nicholas Carr, the writer of the book says, if we over-rely on computers, we'll lose something.
M: But what is it?
W: According to him, using computers means that we are losing skills. He also talks about the loss of talent. He says that relying on computers means our talent is fading because we don't use it anymore. And he goes even further and says, we're losing some of the things that make us human, like empathy, the ability to imagine and understand what other people might be feeling.
M: So, do you agree with him?
W: l think he's got a point actually. It's like the friendships we make on social media. It is nice to get to know new people in different countries, but we have to remember that it's important to talk to people face-to-face too.
M: Good idea. I'll try not to rely so much on digital technology. Computers are here to stay and they'll become more sophisticated, but we have to remember they are just tools.
W: Yes, I can't agree more.