9:45 am

Is Google Making Us Stupid?

Ignore the provocative title, and read this article from the Atlantic Monthly. I can’t make up my mind whether to be scared or relieved (or both).

I, too, have noticed with some dismay that I spend less time reading books than I used to, and that the books I do read are tending more and more to simple, inconsequential fluff. Mind, I still buy more serious books; they’re just likely to sit on the shelf unread for months at a time. I had worried that perhaps this was a sign that I was getting older, and the ole brain was getting lazy.

If this article is to be believed, though, the fault is not so much in myself as in the reading habits that the Internet has inculcated. Hence my relief.

On the other hand, it’s scary as hell to realize that not only have I willingly, nay eagerly, participated in this effort to dumb down my reading, I’ve even made a career of propagating it! And it’s even scarier to realize that my behavior is unlikely to change greatly even after this has been brought to me attention.

Excuse me now please, while I go pull some weighty tome off my bookcase and see if I can’t start to reverse the process.

P.S. The irony that I found this article on the Internet does not escape me, either.

One response to “Is Google Making Us Stupid?”

  1. Anne-Marie says:

    Recently I took a spelling test (for a job). I used to be a really good speller. I didn’t do well at all on the test. The administrator said “that’s ok, we have spell check”. Computers have made me stupid in the basics.


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