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The authors have gone beyond outlining the problems by prescribing solutions for various interest groups. Though, a good approach, some of the solutions are idealistic and may not be practical to execute. Other than this, while the authors have effectively managed to prove their point of the pitfalls of overuse of digital technology, the book, at places, ends up reiterating certain points. For many, this may be a good approach to drive the point home, however, some would call this a lack of a crisp narrative.

There is no doubt that digital technology is reducing the geographical distance between family and friends, keeping people connected, but it has also changed the triggers that would lead to happiness in our lives – where people are increasingly finding meaning not in the real connections but the ones forged virtually, often leading to a displaced sense of reality.

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Disclaimer: The views expressed in the article above are those of the authors' and do not necessarily represent or reflect the views of this publishing house. Unless otherwise noted, the author is writing in his/her personal capacity. They are not intended and should not be thought to represent official ideas, attitudes, or policies of any agency or institution.

Our generation is married to technology — for better or for worse, we remain committed to this complicated relationship. As technology develops and we stand at the brink of creating smarter, more sensitive machines, it becomes increasingly difficult to remain connected to our own humanity. Each one of us today needs to personally balance our dependence on technology and use it to our advantage rather than succumb to its   addiction. This is the crux of Your Happiness Was Hacked.
The book could be a thought-provoking read to many as it aims to mitigate the harmful effects of technology addiction and also, to a certain extent, influence a degree of behaviour change in the reader. The book can serve as a reality check for many of us who often overlook the fact that technology is just a tool and it is up to us to either use it to our advantage or let it rule our lives.

Technology has gripped us all with its addiction and we have reached a stage where it is difficult to break free. Authors Vivek Wadhwa and Alex Salkever have brought together a well-researched book incorporating multiple perspectives. For instance, social media feeds are compared to a slot machine, where the unpredictability of the outcome has us perpetually glued to the screen, while also adversely affecting our own sense of joy, stress or depression. This element was also identified by Nir Eyal in his book, Hooked, which highlighted how habit-forming products start with a trigger, followed by an action from the user, and finally getting rewarded, compelling the person to use the product again and again, making the person completely addicted to the same. Facebook, WhatsApp and dating apps all reinforce this phenomenon.

The book conveys an important message for the times we are living in and nudges us to use technology responsibly rather than letting it decide the course of our future. It is in our hands to reshape today’s narrative of technology, else, our happiness will indeed be hacked!  

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