08 February 2008

Beyond the Information Age

As any avid blog reader knows, the information age is already behind us. Let's say it was basically 1985 to 2001 give or take. Intrinsically we all know it: life is no longer linear. Our transition out of the information age reaches into every corner of our lives. We are now in the recommendation age according to Chris Anderson author of the Long Tail. Distributed intelligence and the probabilistic truth model of Wikipedia and the likes has taken our Post Modern world view and stretched it until it has given birth to a new paradigm. Information is everywhere, ubiquitous, always on. It's a matter now of organizing the infinite cornucopia of information into meaningful systems, networks, and experiences.

Life is no longer linear, in fact linearity seems funny in some ways now.
If you are old enough, you'll remember a time when businesses would name themselves silly things like "AAA Pools" just so they would show up first in the phone book (a paper anthology of businesses that people used to read to find information before Google and keyword search).

Back when music was stored on physical media such as records, tapes, and cd's you used to have to buy a whole album just to get one or two songs you liked. What a rip-off.

There was even a time when people watched television for the news! Imagine having to sit and wait for half an hour (and through commercials) just to get to the 10 second story you were interested in. How pompous of the newscasters to decide what I want to know about. Who did they think they were?!(Incidentally, for those of you who don't use tv anymore, fyi they still broadcast news shows. You should see one someday, what a laugh! There's no substance, no context. It's all fear-mongering and shocking images. I watch the cbc news when I eat breakfast because it's so geriatric and funny it makes my day.)

As a kid I remember listening to the radio for hours hoping that they would eventually play a song that I liked (please don't laugh, it still hurts). Nope, sorry kids, there was nothing to click on that would make it go. I had to wait in line like everyone else. Now, thank God, we can all have our own personal radio station (sorry, this link only works in -gasp- Internet Explorer.

We are going through such a huge evolution of culture right now that in 100 years or less the twentieth century will be lumped in with the Enlightenment as the historical period between the Medieval Ages (before the printing press) and the current epoch (after the internet).
Welcome to the future.

1 comment:

  1. With all my travels into the US these days, I can say that anyone not living in some-major-urban-area-that touches-water (read: blue states) still gathers their information from nightly news.

    It's reinforced by guys like Bill O'Reilly, who cleverly frame "the internet" as a lawless society of truth-haters. Or "probabilistic truth".

    What's annoying to me is when people refer to the internet as a whole - where the internet is just a platform.
    For example, "writers on the internet are not journalists"....from a journalist who's columns appear on the web site behind some web 1.0 premium section.


Recent eratics:

There's a lot of gold here and it's updated often.
Come back soon or subscribe