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futurista

futurista

Currently reading

Cristofori's Dream
Robert Italia
Your Inner Fish: A Journey Into The 3.5 Billion Year History Of The Human Body
Neil Shubin, Marc Cashman
The Enchanted Wood
Enid Blyton
The Sparrow
Mary Doria Russell
The Ghosts Of Evolution Nonsensical Fruit, Missing Partners, And Other Ecological Anachronisms
Connie Barlow

The Gutenberg Elegies: The Fate of Reading in an Electronic Age

The Gutenberg Elegies: The Fate of Reading in an Electronic Age - Sven Birkerts I thought I would agree more with this author bemoaning the fate of reading since I see first-hand in teaching American literature how few of my students actually read ... or have ever read a book for that matter. As the author says, it's true that many people in the youngest generations are more comfortable with television, movies, and the internet than they are with a book. It's true that students seem to more often have difficulty understanding literature without being guided through it. I often find myself surprised that students don't know how to use and index or card catalog and depend on google and wikipedia for everything. Sometimes I think technology is making people lazier and causing less people to read. But I think this author has taken these ideas to extremes.

Perhaps the author is more extreme in his views since he's writing in 1994 when the internet, for most of us, was a fairly new concept. Unfortunately, this author comes across as a technophobe who thinks that authors should still be using typewriters and who cannot see that hyperlinks on the computer screen are the same as footnotes, endnotes, and indexes made more user-friendly. He hopes that the world will refuse these new ways of conveying information because it's no longer the static words on a page that he's used to.

Unfortunately, the author chose to see technology as creating a doom and gloom future. He did not use any sort of empirical data to back up his conjectures. I would really like to see someone write a book that includes actual research on these ideas instead of just the fears of a man who feels more comfortable behind the pages of a book than in front of a computer screen.