I’m by no means a techy or geek as they say in the digital world but I flat out love Wired. It’s an excellent magazine that I would recommend to anyone that works or has interest in the digital space. I’ve had a subscription for three years now and I read every edition cover-to-cover. In fact, if I owned my own firm, I would purchase subscriptions to Wired for every employee. Just sayin’.
The June 2010 edition of Wired features two great articles around the way we perceive and engage with technology. I highly recommend giving both a read:
We surf, we bounce, we click, we subscribe and bookmark but never read again. The Internet has turned the notion of reading comprehension on its head as we all splurge to consume and digest snippets of information across the Web as rapidly as possible. Carr explores the idea that we are rewiring the way we thoroughly analyze and interpret the surplus of data instantaneously accessible at our fingertips.
“Navigating linked documents, it turned out, entails a lot of mental calisthenics – evaluating hyperlinks, deciding whether to click, adjusting to different formats – that are extraneous to the process of reading. Because it disrupts concentration, such activity weakens comprehension.”
“The ability to scan and browse is as important as the ability to read deeply and think attentively. The problem is that skimming is becoming our dominant mode of thought. Once a means to an end, a way to identify information for further study, it’s become an end in itself – our preferred method of both learning and analysis.”
In this interview, Shirky and Pink explore the increasing value of our free time alongside intrinsic motivation as a route to making a difference in the world. With the Internet evolving as the dominant form of consumption, we are facilitating content creation and sharing and ultimately tapping into our natural desire to connect and collaborate with one another.
“We do things because they are interesting, because they’re engaging, because they’re the right thing to do, because they contribute to the world.”