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Web Sabbath

2008-06-15 13:19:11.445399+00 by ziffle 7 comments

Or What hath Google wrought?

Great article from the UK (Andres Sullivan) on how Google might be changing how we think.

"When I was younger I would carry a single book around with me for days, letting its ideas splash around in my head, not forming an instant judgment (for or against) but allowing the book to sit for a while, as the rest of the world had its say the countryside or pavement, the crowd or train carriage, the armchair or lunch counter. Sometimes, human beings need time to think things through, to allow themselves to entertain a thought before committing to it."

Some have suggested a web sabbath a day or two in the week when we force ourselves not to read e-mails or post blogs or text messages; a break in order to think in the old way again: to look at human faces in the flesh rather than on a Facebook profile, to read a book rather than a blog, to pray [!] rather than browse.

It does not appear to me that the net has improved most peoples methods of thinking, however.

comments in ascending chronological order (reverse):

#Comment Re: made: 2008-06-15 14:42:34.36132+00 by: ziffle [edit history]

Cleaning up the frontpage I moved this to a comment ..

I am often astounded at how ideas that at one time were considered (maybe by me only) to be unthinkable become commonplace. Like Google, or Mapping online, or email or cell phones. I remember driving down the Interstate and my friend took a photo of the traffic and emailed it to China, all in about 20 seconds. This would be unthinkable just a few decades ago, and now it does not raise an eyebrow.

When I try and think ahead of what else might be coming up on the horizon, my mind blocks as its hard for me to consider what could be invented.

What could be next?


BTW I had to edit this numerous times as the dash that Sullivan put into his article caused Flutterby to crash. I had to delete and add parts of the text over and over. One Dash? In the old days we ...

#Comment Re: made: 2008-06-15 15:27:14.407973+00 by: markd

not to mention all the new and unexpected varieties of porn.

#Comment Re: made: 2008-06-15 20:34:25.314272+00 by: Dan Lyke

I remember back in 1993 or 1994, trying to sell people on the notion of having menus for restaurants available so that you could figure out what you wanted on, say, your pizza without calling up the place and tying up a person while you asked "do you have salami and pepperoni?".

Now, most places in my neck of the woods with takeout have their menus on-line.

And the demise of the encyclopedia? That was super dramatic. As is the decline of the phone book.

And, yes, I do need to figure out whyintheheck I can't get the content encoding for data going into PostgreSQL right...

#Comment Re: made: 2008-06-15 20:49:28.514005+00 by: whump

A "web sabbath," as if Sullivan needs another excuse to be self-righteous...

#Comment Re: made: 2008-06-16 01:33:25.869072+00 by: dexev

Someone in our house was asking for a phone book a while ago, and my six year old piped up, "What's a phone book?"

She also gets upset with me when I turn the VCR off in the middle of a movie -- she doesn't want to lose her place.

#Comment Re: made: 2008-06-16 11:34:53.21081+00 by: meuon [edit history]

"whyintheheck..." - Yet another reason all Web 3.0 programmers are using PHP and MySQL. (smile and laugh, i'm kidding)

On the serious side, I've gotten some good code work done when I am off-net using laptops when travelling/camping. No e-mail, no www.. just the problem at hand. Sucks when I need to look something up, but otherwise helps stay focused.

#Comment Re: made: 2008-06-17 16:02:30.55864+00 by: Dan Lyke

Elf is referring to another "my buggy whip is going out of style" article, but he sums it up nicely:

"You kids with your electrical difference engines and aetheric yodeling machines are destroying Western civilization! Soon you won't even know how to talk to each other!"