Research Paper: Telecommuting Technology Has Reached

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[. . .] In instant messaging, the parties engage in a conversation similar to what one might have on the telephone but the individual comments are typed onto the computer screen and received immediately by the receiving party.

In the area of entertainment the internet has become like a portable television providing hours of entertainment for its user. Web sites have become the primary source of game playing from card playing to highly complicated adventure games. Replacing radios and portable CD players, specialized internet sites have developed such as Rhapsody or Pandora that allow one to listen to a full spectrum of music while surfing the web. It has also allowed for non-traditional musicians to gain exposure and for the publication of music that major studios have ignored.

The impact of the internet on business is almost immeasurable. (Kroese, 2001) Not only has the internet become a use database of information for today's businesses it has also become the main street of the ever growing e-commerce world. Every day brings a new business to the internet with the potential of developing into the next Amazon or Ebay while traditional businesses such as Kohl's or Macy's have used it to expand their services. In essence, the internet has provided a vehicle for anyone with a computer connection and a good idea to start a business with a minimum degree of capital.

Aside from the obvious impact there are also the subtleties. Our language has been altered; emails addresses have become a part of our identification like our name, address and telephone number; and membership in Facebook or LinkedIn have become a sign of one's social sophistication. Terms such as lol, btw, or bff, have been adopted as part of our society's daily conversation as they are used in texting, instant messaging or emailing. Email addresses are used by employers, credit card companies and government agencies as a form of identification as much as phone numbers and driver's licenses are.

Like the internet that began as a tool of the military, Global Positioning System (GPS) enjoyed a similar beginning. The GPS system grew out of NASA's satellite program which allowed the present day GPS system to develop. Signals from the satellites rotating the earth permit anyone with a commercially purchased GPS device to pinpoint a location anywhere in the world within 15 meters (approximately 49 feet). Through the development of GPS and related devices motorists and other travelers have been provided with improved navigation; emergency response teams have been able to more efficiently and quickly provide their services to persons in even the most remote areas; traffic management has seen remarkable improvement; and, with the introduction of GPS into the world of smart phones, tourists can maneuver their way even while walking.

Prior to the widespread use of computers there was no such major on American college campuses such information systems. Information systems as a career option mirror the growth of the use of computers. The need for an organized method for gathering, processing, storing, distributing and using information was vital if computers were going to be used effectively and, as a result, the field of information systems matured as a study discipline. Over time it has grown into one of the fastest growing fields of study in all of academia and as one of the most sought after degrees by potential employers. (Bureau of Labor Statistics, 2010)

Information systems was developed initially developed in order to facilitate the use of computers but it has impacted on our everyday life as well. As computer use became more widespread the demand for additional and more complete information by even the most casual user became more demanding as well. Users wanted as much information from the computers they were working and they wanted it not only faster they also wanted it faster. Enter the information systems expert who could develop programs that made computer use easier and faster.

The casual use of the computer placed extreme pressure on the information systems field to develop better and more efficient methods of handling information but it was business, government and institutions that supplied the greatest need and the greatest pressure. Growth in governmental programs required that data bases be created that could handle the geometric increase in information and it was found that information system professionals were an important part of the developmental process that could effectuate this result. As more and more government programs were initiated and grew so did the demand for information systems professionals who could manage the programs.

The severe demand for improved information systems personnel by government is only the tip of the iceberg in describing the impact that technological change has had on the field. In the computer age information management is seen as a key to success in business. Any graduate with a business degree looks upon the use of information technologies as the key to obtaining commercial advantage. For example, being able to discern what the customer wants and being able to supply it to him is what an effective information systems professional can do for a business and so being able to procure the services of such an individual is crucial. Therefore, for any business, The use of information technology to monitor a business' performance can also enable the business to highlight areas where they are not making the most use of their resources. This is a use that is frequently utilized by advertising departments to determine where and how to spend their budgeted dollars. (Melymuka, 2002)

Having looked at each new technology individually it is now time to examine how all these different elements together influence how we live our lives. In practice, these different elements do not operate in a vacuum. Rather, most of us use each of the technologies and devices mentioned herein as part of a general technological scheme. Our cell phones are networked with our computers; our computers are networked with several different social media outlets; our GPS units are soon to be able to networked with our smart phones and information system specialists throughout the world are analyzing our purchasing tendencies and grouping us by demographics. It is an endless pattern and so what impact does all these devices and systems have on our ability to telecommunicate?

Beginning with the invention of the telephone, the entire issue of telecommunication had its beginning. The shrinking of the world began immediately and as the telephone business increased so did the relative size of the world and it has not stopped. Globalization is the watchword of the day. Telecommunication has made the exchange of ideas and thoughts an almost immediate action in today's world and it is sure to become even more important in the years ahead.

Today's technology is poised to completely change our work environment. For the first time in history commuting through cyberspace has made it possible for workers to do everything they need to do without ever leaving the confines of their home. Businesses are recognizing the positive effects that such a concept can have on their bottom line. (Apgar, 1998) It reduces overhead by limiting the need for office space; it allows for their employees to be more comfortable by working our their own homes; it allows for a reduction in salaries as employees who do not have to drive, park, buy lunch, etc. can afford to work for fewer dollars. Employees are attracted to telecommunicating by the fact that they feel that they have greater control over their lives. Whether they do or not will depend heavily upon the personality of the individual employee but in today's society perception is important and, at least in the short-term, many employers are emphasizing this as an advantage.

There is also the thought that work-at-home employees are less distracted by fellow employees and that, therefore, they are more productive, The typical office environment is subject to a substantial degree of socialization and, as a result, productivity suffers. Again, measuring whether this is true or not will have to be measured over the course of time but, on its face, the argument has some intellectual merit.

One of the original attractions to employers relative to telecommunicating was the decreased dependence on oil. Beginning with the OPEC oil embargo through recent increases in oil prices corporations have been looking for ways to cut costs. Allowing employees to telecommunicate was one way of reducing these costs but it also had the collateral advantage of being environmentally helpful. With ecology taking on increased importance in the public relations arena businesses allowing employees to telecommute have enjoyed these residual advantages.

Telecommunicating is not without disadvantages. (McNeely, 2000) Working at home can often create a certain sense of isolation. Many employees find that within a very short period of time that they miss the work environment. They miss the experience of socializing with the other employees. They feel that working at home causes them to feel isolated and they no longer feel like… [END OF PREVIEW]

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Telecommuting Technology Has Reached.  (2010, December 19).  Retrieved March 24, 2019, from https://www.essaytown.com/subjects/paper/telecommuting-technology-reached/9921402

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"Telecommuting Technology Has Reached."  19 December 2010.  Web.  24 March 2019. <https://www.essaytown.com/subjects/paper/telecommuting-technology-reached/9921402>.

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"Telecommuting Technology Has Reached."  Essaytown.com.  December 19, 2010.  Accessed March 24, 2019.
https://www.essaytown.com/subjects/paper/telecommuting-technology-reached/9921402.