I. Warming up

1. How much do you use a computer? How much does your life depend on it?

2. Do you use a computer for your studies/work? What exactly do you use it for?

II. Reading

Read the text and consider the questions below.

How Computers Changed the World

By M. Gaikwad

Computers have been one of the greatest inventions ever! They have changed the world by changing the way we think today.

Fire is known to be man’s first invention. But, little did he know then, that this effort was going to change his world so drastically. Since then, invention after invention, right from a wheel to a guillotine, changed a lot of things for mankind. Right from simple machines to complex mechanisms, these inventions have only brought about a sea change in the way we function today. For instance, invention of computers brought a technology in the world which had the power to multitask like none other machine created by man. It could store information, simplify tasks and organize work with just one instruction. Ever since, computers have been developed into smarter machines by honchos of leading information technology conglomerates. Let’s find out how computers changed the world.

How Computers Changed Business

Computers have changed the way a business functions in a large way. Back in the olden times, corporate houses rented spaces for running accounting departments. It took months together to figure out profit or loss that a business had made or suffered. Recording entries and other relevant data was done manually and most of it remained scripted. However, with the advent of computers, the concept of manual entries and use of human brain to remember and memorize company’s financial operations became obsolete. This transformation was known as automation, which made computers the backbone of all new age businesses. Today, computers are used beyond bookkeeping purposes too. Almost everything that happens in an organization, right from its inception to its closure, is recorded, worked upon, evaluated and rectified with the help of computers.

How Computers Changed Our Lives

Imagining our lives without computers is next to impossible. Ubiquity of these machines goes to show our incorrigible dependence on them. Computers were initially used only in workplaces. However, they soon became a household name, which revolutionized everything from school homework to grocery shopping. When computers were supplemented by Internet, it caused a great shift in the way we functioned. It ironed out several creases in long distance communication. This gave an impetus to globalization, bringing the world closer and opening new avenues to explore the human reach. Over a period of time, computers enabled working from home, which created a new type of employment for many. This gave usage of computers, within the confines of homes a new dimension. As technology progressed, simple things such as shopping, booking tickets, buying a new house, searching for schools and colleges, applying to the same, researching for projects and medical information became a lot easier with entry of computers in every households. Thus, computers affected our lives in ways that remained blinded to the naked eye.

How Computers Change the Way We Think

Computer being an indispensable tool in our lives, has changed the way we think in more ways than one. Today, all you have to do to find answers is, just ‘Google it’! The online world of blogging, instant messaging, chatting and social networking not only leaves virtual traces, but unites the world in a completely unimagined way. It has caused revolutions and added to the verve of celebrations in equal magnanimity. This powerful medium is the great mode of mass communication which affects out thinking by allowing people a platform to voice their opinions and stir discussions that have brought about a change in the world.

Computers have pushed us to see different worlds and experiences cultures. Although the growth is a virtual one, it’s after effects are very much real. The revolution in Egypt is the latest example of how computers changed the world. Today the identity of information technology is computers. Invention of this machine has changed the world’s perspective about cultures, economics, history and current affairs. The advent of computers has no doubt brought a revolutionary change in our existence, however it has a flip side too. Thus, using a computer for a better evolution in the coming decades remains a bigger challenge for the mankind.


1. What inventions have drastically changed the world? Add to the list of the ones that are mentioned in the text.

2. How did automation change the world of business?

3. Is ‘Google it!’ really an answer to all the questions?

III. Focus on the language

Divide the following words and expressions into two categories: a) the words you would use to describe the life in the past; b) the words you would use to describe modern life. Now list five changes that computers have brought into our lives. Make use of as many words and expressions as you can from each category.

Verb phrases : to bring about a sea change, to have the power to multitask, to organize work with just one instruction, to be used for/beyond bookkeeping purposes, to become obsolete, to rectify with the help of computers, to become a household name, to revolutionize everything, to be supplemented by, to cause a great shift, to give an impetus to globalization, to open new avenues, to enable working from home, to create a new type of employment, to remain scripted, to leave virtual traces, to unite the world in a completely unimagined way, to allow people a platform to voice their opinions, to stir discussions, to bring about a change in the world, to have a flip side, to take months together to figure out profit or loss.

Nouns and noun phrases : information technology conglomerate, the advent of computers, automation, manual entries, ubiquity of the machines, incorrigible dependence, long distance communication, indispensable tool, blogging, instant messaging, chatting, social networking, after effects, the olden times.

IV. Problem solving

1. Prove that computers have become a mode of mass communication.

2. Agree or disagree: Globalization wouldn’t have been possible without computers.

3. Prove the point: Although computers have incited growth in the virtual world, its after effects are very much real.

V. Useful tips for your presentations

How to organize you speech more effectively. A brief guide to constructing a speech:

An effective introduction will…

-gain attention

-establish credibility

-give the audience a reason to listen

-state central idea/reveal topic

-preview the body of the speech

-be relatively brief (usually not more than 10/15 percent of the length of the speech)

The body of the speech should…

-have a clear organizational structure

-clearly state each main point

-provide necessary elaboration of the main points

-use signposts to introduce new points (transitions, previews, summaries)

The speech conclusion should…


-reemphasize the main idea in a memorable way

-avoid introducing new main points

-signal the end of the speech

-be relatively brief (usually not more than 10/15 percent of the length of the speech)


VI. Working on the project

You are a specialist in computing science addressing a non-specialist audience. Prepare a 5-minute speech on the topic “Have computers changed our lives for the worse or for the better?” Follow the useful tips above.