Saturday, September 26, 2009

Is it too late for the Internet to melt our brains? | Salon Books

The author of a new book, A Better Pencil, says the threat of brain-melting goes farther back than Hulu, the Internet or television.

Dennis Baron, a professor of English and linguistics at the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign, discusses culture-shifting technology in an interview with Salon Books, aptly titled Is the Internet melting our brains?
"So, what I'm trying to do is put the computer revolution into historical context to see how it fits with previous innovations in communication like pencils, like the printing press, like the clay tablet, like writing itself. A new communication technology does what old technology was able to do – sometimes better, sometimes in a little different way -- and I'm looking at how we make sense of all of this."
Salon's Vincent Rossmeier:
"Baron believes that social networking sites, blogs and the Internet are actually making us better writers and improving our ability to reach out to our fellow man. 'A Better Pencil' is both a defense of the digital revolution and a keen examination of how technology both improves and complicates our lives."