07/22/2005: Electric Speed...
I found this tid-bit of analysis in “Everything Bad Is Good For You” by Steven Johnson about our Bloggie-At-The-Speed –Of-Light –Culture and “The Sleeper Curve” [explained in this previous post].
”Technology amplifies the “Sleeper Curve” in one final respect: it introduces new platforms and genres at an accelerating rate. We had thirty years to adapt to the new story telling possibilities of cinema, then another twenty for radio, then twenty years of present state television. And then the curve slants upward: five years to acclimate to the VCR and video games, then e-mail, on-line chats, DVD’s, TiVo, the Web – all becoming staples of the pop-culture diet in the space of a decade. McLuhan had a wonderful term for this accelerating sequence, “electric speed”:
’Today it is the instant speed of electric information that, for the first time, permits easy recognition of the patterns and the formal contours of change and development. The entire world, past and present, now reveals itself to us like a growing plant in an enormously accelerated movie. Electric speed is synonymous with light and with understanding of causes.’
McLuhan believed that this rate of change shed light on the hitherto invisible ways in which media shaped a given society's worldview; it let us see the impact of the medium and not just the message.
What they've learned is not just the specific rules intrinsic to a particular system; they've learned abstract principles that can be applied when approaching ANY complicated system...because they've learned general rules for probing and exploring a piece of technology, rules that come in handy no matter what...you put in front of them.
So, perhaps these bloggie new skills and Web-communications ARE good for me and you can Teach and old dweebie New Tricks. LOL
Karen on 07.22.05 @ 07:31 AM CST