Comments for http://www.bbc.co.uk/blogs/digitalrevolution/2009/11/rushes-sequences-nicholas-carr.shtml http://www.bbc.co.uk/blogs/digitalrevolution/2009/11/rushes-sequences-nicholas-carr.shtml en-gb 30 Thu 30 Oct 2014 18:19:46 GMT+1 A feed of user comments from the page found at http://www.bbc.co.uk/blogs/digitalrevolution/2009/11/rushes-sequences-nicholas-carr.shtml Gilbert Ross http://www.bbc.co.uk/blogs/digitalrevolution/2009/11/rushes-sequences-nicholas-carr.shtml?page=0#comment0 I see Mr.Carr's point but I think that he is looking at the problem from a somehow inadequate perspective. First of all if there really is a trade off between engaging with content/being contemplative/introspective and having quick access to a wilderness of 'information snippets' - it is not obvious in any way that this trade off is a bad one. Let me begin by saying that I love contemplation. I am introspective and contemplative by nature. But being contemplative and introspective is not an external influence, depending on the media of information around you but an internal one. You either have the character disposition to be introspective and deep thinking or you're not. I suspect that what Mr. Carr is talking about is having the faculty of a calm & centered awareness instead of a fidgety and bullet-train mind. let me say that people are naturally born with a fidgety mind (Buddhist call it the 'monkey mind') and centuries of reading paper-based material didn't change that. I never saw any studies indicating the contrary. Sitting by the fire and spending an hour sinking in a book doesn't necessarily train your mind to be more focused and attentive. I seriously doubt that. It only shows that if you did sit for an hour to read, then you already had the patience and natural inclination to do so. If there is a trade-off at all, I think that the positive outweighs the negative by far. Let's be practical. Say I am writing a paper and I need to research a topic. In order to get to an ideal depth and breadth on the topic, I need to read 170+ sources (books, papers & articles) in total. Being realistic, in the absence of the web, there is no way you are going to sit on your butt and read the full length of each & every book unless you're a 16th century friar with tonnes of time on your hand. It's another story with the web. The way information is being structured and hyperlinked means that I can avoid irrelevant chunks of information and manage and extract the essential information I need in exponentially less time. The result? In the first scenario, I would have probably stopped to a small pile of books. In the second one I would have crossed over much larger territory of information ultimately giving my research more depth and breadth. Tue 30 Mar 2010 15:46:18 GMT+1