Tuesday, November 17, 2009

New brains

One of the interesting developments arising from the use of programs like Twitter is that we are literally changing our brains

Rewiring them if you will

They are responding quicker over greater periods of time, days, months, years at a new pace and intensity

This new brain might be quicker but it encodes information more shallowly and the record lasts less long

Twitter might seem to record our thoughts and feelings, but for the most part does nothing other than record simple information like where I am, what I am doing

We do so in a practical way using our digital instruments that merely record our inputs
One person called the fixation of some users with Twitter and other interactive devices "time greed" and in a way this encapsulates what is happening

Many people are becoming addicted to their digital instruments to the point where this becomes and is their world

Seldom far away from the beep or demand of their digital devices

They break conversations, move away from others to text and speak totally absorbed in their digital world

The demand of their devices overriding any other relationships

Never stopping, their life totally at the beck and call of the digital devices of choice

Devices designed to aid communication are becoming that communication


Because Twitter and the like are creating the illusion of involvement, importance and reality

When in fact they are often nothing but accelerators of banality

As the old saying goes garbage in garbage out

And who would argue that 90% of twitter communication is less than stellar?

And our brains that accept this as an imperative are changing

Removing the interest and depth which makes inter human communications so rich and valuable

By increasing the speed of life and accepting the demands of the digital domain we risk losing so much more

Maybe this is why we are seeing the emergence of so many "slow movements", the best known of which is the slow food movement

These are fighting the relentlessly increasing tempo of life

Just as we are ruining the natural environment by our accelerating greed for resources

So we risk damaging our essential humanness through the overloading of our temporal realm

Destroying the core element of our humanity

Let us hope that those coming after us learn to handle their digital realm with more balance than many do today

"Time greed" is unsustainable as many will discover

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