Tuesday, February 2, 2010

From books to screens...from literacy to visuality

Growing up, I have witnessed new inventions continually over throw dominant media. Within my lifetime of technological inventions, we've gone from the boombox to the Sony Walkman to the portable cassette player, to the Ipod. We've gone from desktop computer monitors that cover the entire desk to LCD widescreen flat-panel monitors that take up hardly any space. We've gone from predominantly desktop computers to predominantly portable laptop computers. We've seen laptops go from 24 pounds to 3-12 pounds. I've seen televisions advance from analog all the way to flat screen, digital, high definition televisions.
In just a short amount of years, our culture has gone from a low level of technological literacy to a very high rate of literacy. There's no doubt that new inventions are continually taking the place of dominant media. All of these new advances in technology are leading to screen fluency.

Often times this can becoming frustrating for the consumer. Many Americans, especially older generations, often become accustomed to using a certain type of technology, and then it will change and they will have to re-learn.

I liked the comment in the article Is Google Making us Stupid "Internet is becoming our: map, clock, printing press, typewriter, calculator, telephone, radio and TV. Never has a communication system played so many roles in our lives" This comment is so true. I know this is frustrating for the older generation, too. The internet is becoming a necessity, and as we move from "book literacy to screen literacy" I believe we will begin to see the internet serve more purposes than those listed.

Kevin Kelly also states that we "once revolved around the spoken work with oral skills of memorization, recitation, rhetoric. Then orality was overthrown by technology." Orality seems to be completely gone. Americans even get frustrated talking on the phone. Most would rather send an email, fb message, or chat, rather than talk on the phone.

Funny cartoons I found about technological advances: Enjoy :)

1. http://field.mpls.k12.mn.us/uploads/DCaine_TechnologyCartoon_ITEC501_200.jpg

2. http://www.penny-arcade.com/images/2009/20090309.jpg


Michael_Deere said...

I too am sometimes frustrated with how quickly new technologies become obsolete. If you buy the latest phone or TV, in six months chances are it's going to be old news. I think it's interesting to think about how each time we get a new device or operating system we have to also change the way we think about the action it's being used for. For example the way I think about choosing a song to listen to on my ipod is utterly different than the way i thought about choosing a cassette to listen to on my walkman. Enjoyed the cartoons!

Randy D Nichols said...

Cartoons? I smell extra credit!!!