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  • What Has Google Done To Us?

    Posted on February 15th, 2012 halliedominick No comments

    I recently read an article entitled “Is Good Making Us Stupid? What The Internet Does To Our Brains” by Nicholas Carr.  This article outlined the point that the Internet has caused us to become extremely impatient. It has made each and everyone one of us a little ADD (attention deficit disorder). I can relate to Carr when he speaks of reading a book, reading a textbook, or watching a movie and feeling yourself drift from the subject you should be paying attention to. We have become accustomed to constant stimulation. After 10 minutes of sitting still we get fidgeting, delusional, and anxious. This seems to have become the norm but what is scary is comparing this to what we once behaved like. Many people could sit still and become immersed in a book and let it take over their subconscious. However, now the thought of becoming immersed in a book and letting it take up hours of your day sounds horrific. We have lost the ability to absorb a lot of material at one time.

    Carr makes another extremely valid point that “Media are not just passive channels of information. They supply the stuff of thought, but they also shape the process of thought.” The constant stream of information has led us to live our lives as though every question must be answered within minutes of asking it. We are not satisfied until everything is perfect. We do not allow anything to malfunction or for there to be bumps along the way. Unfortunately, this problem will only continue. Our children will learn from our habits and their children will learn from their habits.

    On a positive note, there have been studies and will continue to be studies regarding the Internet and how it has shaped our thinking. These studies aim at solving the problem we have created. A recent study at the University College of London has attempted to understand exactly what the Internet has done to our brains. The study found that “people using the sites exhibited “a form of skimming activity,” hopping from one source to another and rarely returning to any source they’d already visited.” This form of skimming has translated to other aspects of our life. Hopefully, once addressing the problem we can solve it.


    1 responses to “What Has Google Done To Us?” RSS icon

    • I agree that the internet has definitely made me impatient. I am so used to simply typing my questions into google and finding what I need. If I am looking for something specific in a large article, I often find myself use control find to search the document for a specific word or two. So when I am forced to sit down with a giant book and do research manually, I definitely impatient and frustrated. So yes, you could look at the internet and computer as making us in some ways lazy. But, doesn’t make sense that going back to these primitive methods can seem tedious and maddening? One of the biggest assets to computers is that they help us do things faster, quicker and more efficient. In the computer, we have found an invaluable resource that helps us in so many ways. So when it is taken away from us, I feel that frustration and impatience is expected or even inevitable. I guess the real question is not are we reliant on computers, but are we too reliant?

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