Free Choice

Today the internet can be accessed from nearly anywhere. Technology and production costs have been rapidly advancing for the past few years and we find ourselves at a unique point in history. For the first time ever, we have a machine that let’s us access any medium we want. We can talk to friends, watch movies, read articles, listen to music, and play games with barely any effort. You don’t even have to get up from your chair. However, this information overload has not been without a downside. What we’ve gained in convenience, we’ve lost in productivity and creativity.

A computer screen is not exactly comfortable when it comes to reading. The screen has an incandescent glow that takes a toll on the eyes when looked at too long. Pair that with concentrating on a long passage and you might feel a headache coming on. At least I have. True to its ease of use and convenience, the internet is all about condensing information and getting things over with quickly. It’s difficult to concentrate when one is faced with so many different options online. You are constantly switching between different websites, chatlogs, videos, etc., and sometimes skimming through them seems like the only viable option. Our computers can process things which would have been out of our price range 20 years ago. One wonders how our minds can keep up and compete with these super machines. Finely tuned and perfected to carry out our demands. I find myself looking through the tabs on my browser even as I’m writing this. It’s inescapable.

I think Nicholas Carr has done a great job setting up his argument thus far. He put many thoughts I had into words and made everything seem a lot clearer. Chapter 5 left me wondering what our technology will be like in another years. It’s hard to imagine where we can go from here. To me everything seems fine the way it is. I couldn’t ask for more. I especially enjoyed the chapter on the Gutenberg press. I always knew it to be hugely influential but the little details made it very interesting and I find it easier to appreciate its impact on society. I feel as computers and the internet are our generations “Gutenberg Press” and that it will take another few hundred years before something similar comes along. That’s if we’re still around then.

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One Response to Free Choice

  1. prof. kaufman says:

    Good post! I’d be curious to know more about what you think Carr does to “set his argument up”–why is he successful? What does he do well? What makes his work persuasive? In other words, what is it about Carr’s style that we can learn from…or steal?

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