In this chapter Nicholas Carr covers the evolution of writing technologies and their impacts on the human brain and the development of knowledge. He explains about the development of the wax tablets and that they helped writing technologies to spread to more people: he also talks about the printing press and its developments. The introduction of the printing press in the mid 15th century, made people realize that they found the perfect medium. The printing press led to a ‘virtuous cycle’ in which it increased availability of books and further stimulated demand for books. In this chapter, Carr argues that there is some kind of an intimate relationship between a writer and a book, and a reader and a book: the book encourages a focussed and sustained intellectual effort in a way that simply was not possible before the invention of the book. Our great literary tradition of the last 400 years simply would not have existed without the technology of the book and the influence this had on the ‘neural pathways’ of so many of our great writers. However, with the infiltration of media and especially 2.0 technologies into the mainstream, the pathways of our brain are once again changing.
Compare and contrast
Cause and effect
"Reading is soo much fun but why do people waste so much paper printing them?" said a girl in the library. In the present day, most people prefer reading online over actual paperback books and this is been both a good and a bad change. Back in the day, people used papyrus plant and clay tablets as a medium to write books and with the help of growing technology, things changed.
In the past, reading was viewed as a form of art but the growth of technology improved the rate of literates rapidly. People understood that education was not just a form of art but a source of development. Along with education came different inventions, psychology, stress and more. One of the most important inventions for the author's community was printing, the introduction of printers and typewriters made writing so much faster and made it available to a large group of people
Cause and effect
Walter Ong said “Writing and print and the computers are all the ways of technologizing the world and once technologized the world cannot be de-technologized. But the world of the computer screen... Is very different from the world of page”. People today chose to read most stuff online that find in the books and this is because searching up content online would lead to instant results whereas reading a book needs a lot of time and effort
Cause and effect
People these days prefer instant results over reading books. In fact, not only has the reading patterns changed, so has the math. People choose to use calculators and online resources to do their math rather than doing it in their heads
Oral communication play a significant role in the process of writing. Carr states that the first words were written down in form of "Scripta continua"-- a process of reflecting oral cultures because things were written the way they were mimicked to sound. Later, when people realized education is a must, the letter was modified into phonetic alphabets and give space in between to make it easier to read.
Finally, the growth of technology has changed how the world works and has made it so much easier for the people. Although it has a lot of pros, it has a lot of cons as well. it has made human communication less and has made people not think as much as they did. The process of printing made the books available to a large number of people and heightened their expectations. Therefore, the growth of technology has made people more knowledgeable and resourceful but at the same time lazy.