Friday, August 06, 2010

The internet is changing the way you think: The Difference Engine: Rewiring the brain | The Economist

Another timely and eloquent reality check from The Economist – follow the link below to read the full article

To the specific question that Mr Carr asks about what the internet is doing to our brains, the simple answer is that it is making us think and behave differently. Of that, there is no doubt. But that does not mean we are getting dumber in the process. What makes people intelligent is their ability to learn and reason—in short, to adapt and thrive within their environment. That fundamental capacity has not changed in thousands of years, and is unlikely to do so because some new technology comes along, whether television, mobile phones or the internet.

Adaptation to one’s changing surroundings is a different matter. Every new medium introduced since the invention of the printing press has molded our minds in different ways. It would be alarming if it didn’t. Today, confronted with the ubiquity of the internet, we need a whole new set of skills to navigate the information-laden environment we inhabit. In other words, each new set of skills we learn and memories we create builds on our existing mental capacities without changing them in any fundamental way.

The internet is changing the way you think: The Difference Engine: Rewiring the brain | The Economist

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