Superstition is a belief or practice that is not based on rationality, logic or evidence, but rather on fear, ignorance or tradition. Superstition can take many forms, such as avoiding black cats, crossing fingers for luck, or knocking on wood to prevent misfortune[1].

But what does superstition have to do with technology? Technology is supposed to be the opposite of superstition: it is based on science, reason and innovation. Technology is supposed to help us understand and control the world around us, not make us more fearful or irrational.

However, technology can also create new forms of superstition or reinforce old ones. For example:

  • Some people blow on their video game cartridges to fix technical errors, even though this may actually cause more harm than good[2].
  • Some people close all their background applications on their smartphones to save battery life, even though this may not have any effect at all[2].
  • Some people avoid using certain numbers or words in their online usernames or passwords because they believe they are unlucky[3].
  • Some people trust online reviews or ratings more than their own judgment or experience because they believe they reflect the wisdom of the crowd[3].

These are examples of how technology can make us more superstitious by giving us only a little bit of information about how it works, leaving us with gaps in our knowledge that we fill with assumptions or beliefs. Technology can also make us more superstitious by creating new phenomena that we do not fully understand or explain, such as glitches, viruses, hacks or artificial intelligence.

Technology can also challenge our existing superstitions by providing evidence that contradicts them. For example:

  • Science has shown that there is no causal link between walking under a ladder and having bad luck[1].
  • Technology has enabled us to explore space and discover that there are no monsters living in the sky[1].
  • Technology has allowed us to communicate with people from different cultures and religions and learn that they have different beliefs and practices than ours[4].

These are examples of how technology can make us less superstitious by opening our eyes to the reality behind what we perceive with our senses. Technology can also make us less superstitious by empowering us to test our beliefs and experiment with different outcomes.

So are you superstitious? How does technology shape your beliefs? Do you use technology to confirm your superstitions or challenge them? Do you trust technology more than your own intuition or experience?

There is no right or wrong answer to these questions. Superstition is part of human nature and culture. It can be harmless or harmful depending on how we use it. Technology can be a tool for learning or a source of confusion depending on how we understand it.

The important thing is to be aware of our own biases and limitations and seek out reliable sources of information and evidence when we encounter something new or unfamiliar. Technology can help us do that if we use it wisely.