Quote: “Technology is not magic…”

Sarah at Reference Desk
Sarah at Reference Desk

“Technology is not magic. It cannot think for you, no matter how advanced it is. It cannot make you smarter. Technology is a tool, a means to good or to ill based only on the intentions of the user. There is no panacea, no global solution… ” – Phil Elmore

Elmore, Phil. “The most insidious IT security risk.” World Net Daily. Nov. 30 2008.

https://web.archive.org/web/20090228085454/http://www.worldnetdaily.com/index.php?fa=PAGE.view&pageId=80832

Remember Technology Is A Tool

While Mr. Elmore was specifically talking about network security, I think this is one of the most apt quotes about technology in general that I have come across a long time. Technology IS just a tool and the real secret is learning to think about it analytically and to learn to use it well and how and when to use it all. A truly technology literate person needs the ability to choose when technology is the best tool and when it’s not.

But Not The Only Tool

Technology can’t solve all problems and if you try to force it to, you will only be bending the problem to try to make it fit your preferred solution and nothing will be solved. Today too many people try to solve problems by doing things that computers do well. That’s not always the answer.  When I was doing my graduate work I took one class that I got one thing and only one thing out of, a very powerful saying that I often apply the same way “If the only tool you have is a hammer, you tend to see every problem as a nail.” While technology is an important tool, remember it’s not the ONLY one.

UPDATED December 10 2016: I originally posted this back to 2008 and for some reason I hadn’t added the citation just the weblink which had since gone dead. I added the citation and fixed the link thanks to Internet Archive. I also added my current signature block and the photo. I added the headings and made some small edits for clarity.

Sarah S. Uthoff is the main force behind Trundlebed Tales striving to bring the History, Mystery, Magic and Imagination of Laura Ingalls Wilder and other greats of children’s literature and history to life for a new generation. Uthoff is a nationally known Laura Ingalls Wilder authority and has presented at five of the Wilder homesites, many conferences and numerous libraries, museums, and events around the Midwest. Attend one of her programs, schedule one yourself, watch her videos, listen to her podcast, and find her on FacebookTwitterGoogle+ LinkedIn, and Academia.edu. Professionally she is a reference librarian at Kirkwood Community College and director of the Oxford (Iowa) Public Library.

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trundlebedtales

Sarah S. Uthoff is the main force behind Trundlebed Tales striving to bring the History, Mystery, Magic and Imagination of Laura Ingalls Wilder and other greats of children’s literature and history to life for a new generation. Uthoff is a nationally known Laura Ingalls Wilder authority and has presented at five of the Wilder homesites, many conferences and numerous libraries, museums, and events around the Midwest. Attend one of her programs, schedule one yourself, watch her videos, listen to her podcast, and find her on Facebook, Twitter, Google+, LinkedIn, and Academia.edu. Professionally she is a reference librarian at Kirkwood Community College and director of the Oxford (Iowa) Public Library.

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