Saturday, March 22, 2008

Is Google making us stupid?

The other day the hubby and I were talking about how we can seemingly no longer live without our computers. The topic came up when we heard the news that Brockhaus, a tradtional German encyclopedia, was discontinued. The last edition will see the light of day in 2008.

Okay we do work in the computer business and there are bigger geeks than us out there. Nevertheless the use of the internet dominates how our household gets information.

I don't remember the last time I've used an encyclopedia or looked something up without the use of the internet. Letters via snail mail? Negative. Daily newspaper or weekly magazines? Nope. The last time I have seen a bank teller? Ages ago. I can barely remember what she looks like. And then there are internet search engines.

I remember starting out with Web Crawler and Lycos then Dogpile (I loved the "go fetch" slogan) and MetaGer a German engine and then Google came along. I pretty much searched for everything online. In college I never shut down my computer. Instead I got up from heated discussion at the kitchen table in our dorm to storm into my room and check for info on the web.

We still do that today only we've now got a desktop and a laptop each. The other day when we were on our way up to my parents house and we were stuck in traffic, we almost took out our laptop to surf the web. We then decided against in and had a sandwich and a lovely conversation instead.

What I am getting at is that Google, Live Search, Wikipedia or the entire internet could be making us smart and stupid at the same time. Smart because we can get information really quick and stupid because who actually edits and filters all the information we consume?

What role does the internet play in your house and how often do you use your computers and for what?

10 comments:

Corey~living and loving said...

oh yeah...I totally get what you are saying. seems like several times a week, I'm on the net looking something up to win an arguement. LOL

or while watching TV, I'll be like, "how the heck old is tina turner anyhow?" and I jump online.

Don Mills Diva said...

Our laptop in on and connected all day if we're home and we're constantly popping on and off it. Some evenings hubby and I will sit beside each other both on our laptops for a few hours - ya we're pretty damn addicted. But we very rarely watch tv so I guess that's something...

Liane said...

lol I'm the same way with google. And my computer is on pretty much all day, but I'm trying to get away from that.

Patty said...

Funny you should ask this I just came to realize that since my parents house, my sisters apt and mine are all routed with wireless internet I now carry my laptop EVERYWHERE in its pretty pink laptop case. In the car I turn on the laptop and use my itunes for music instead of the car radio or cd's and now I want to buy a 2nd laptop the Mac Air. I got issues! Internet and bloggin addiction issues. LOL!

TOM said...

You don't even need short term memory anymore..Watch a movie..ask the question.."Who is that actor/actress?"" or "Who sang that song??"" and just google the lyrics or movie title and there's your answer!!

Kat said...

Corey Hehe yep good bye to long lasting arguments. The answer is at hand so swiftly you don't even dare making a statement :)

Don Mills Diva Yay for not watching too much TV.

Liane We feel a bit addicted too and haven't yet managed to reduce our online time :) Good luck with it anyway. If you have found a way, let me know LOL

Patty Wow that is a lot of computer usage indeed. Let me know how that Macbook Air works out for you once you have it.

Tom Hehe funny you mentioned that. The hubby and I usually argue what year that film was made or who is starring in it... and off we go to IMDB...

Glad to see we are not alone

SpAzzGiRL said...

I would be lost without my precious internet, how would I know what the weather was like? what the directions are? who said that? what is this dang movie on tv?...all on the internet and all totally making me lazier than I have ever been in my life! lol

Lindz said...

You're totally right. Kids today NEVER use encyclopedias, I don't even know that they've been introduced. Everything is via the internet. Although being a Spanish teacher I insist that my students use a REAL dictionary because on-line translators are crap. I also think the last time I used an encyclopedia was in middle school....

Uncommon Blonde said...

I agree but I also can't live without the internet! I have my laptop on my lap most of the evening and I check my email ALL day!

cpumind said...

I don't think google is making us stupid cause thats him even though i love to use him so much.

I feel addiction to be online.

I forget my girlfriend waiting outside for a deep kiss and thinking when i will be offline.

One thing for sure the real world is out side of the net.