There is absolutely no doubt that this article forces the reader to think about the time he spends browsing endlessly through websites after websites. Throughout the article, the author shares his experiences, regarding the effects of Internet usage on his mind, with the reader. Reading through the whole material, it can be easily deduced that extensive usage of Internet has toned down the author’s thinking abilities, and has had a negative impact on his concentration levels while reading any form of lengthy prose. Furthermore, he supports his theory with examples of numerous people who experienced the same mental effects in similar situations.
What the author basically points out here is that with the vast amount of information at our hands and the technology to extract only what is specifically needed, internet users have lost the ability think logically, and instead blindingly accept what they read on the computer screen. As I mentioned previously that the article forces the reader to think back, I instantly thought about my past and current reading habits. A few years back I used to be an avid reader of fiction. But recently I bought a book by Stephen King, one of my favorite writers; it’s been a month and I still haven’t got past the third page. I was distracted so often that it was impossible to keep track of what went on in the book.
After reading the article, I gave some thought to it; and what I realized is that Internet usage has completely changed our priorities regarding any form of reading material. What I mean to say is that we are so used to reading only the highly important parts of a prose that we do not feel a single bit interested in the context anymore. This is exactly what the search-engines on the Internet aim for. They present to you those extracts of a prose that contain the exact keywords you search for. Moreover, even if they do present the whole article, they either highlight the keywords or put in so many hyperlinks relating to the relevant topic that it turns out to be impossible for the reader to discard them and concentrate only on a single boring and lengthy article. (NPR Website).
It is my opinion that the book incident was certainly a result of the habit of repetitive search for key texts alone. After spending years extracting information from the Internet, I feel that I give no heed to the text of a book or article except for the climaxes. Hence, when I started reading the Stephen King book, from the beginning I found myself looking forward more to the exciting parts of the book rather than the story building ones.
Due to the huge amounts of information and opinions exhibited on the Internet by numerous writers, a reader skims over every piece of work presented to him instead of extensively studying a few reliable materials. This habit has not only deprived the readers of attaining complete information, but has also robbed them of their ability to form a genuine and logical opinion regarding the matter at hand. As a result of the limited material they study, they naturally approve of what the writers have to say about the subject. Take this very article of mine for example. After reading Nicholas Carr’s material, I found it necessary to deeply study a few other works on this controversial matter, in order to form an original and unbiased conclusion of my own. Moreover, numerous hyperlinks, concerning the subject, are present on the webpage that contains this article. Although they are aimed for the readers to visit every link superficially, I felt the need to extensively go through every relevant webpage. Thereby, I can confidently say that my piece of work is not the result of what the author here is drawing our attention to. (NPR Website).
In this article, the author clearly states that nowadays, people, especially youngsters, are relying more and more on electronic gadgets. There is no doubt that these electronic devices were created for an individual’s own comfort; but the current situation indicates that the advancement in technology has brought about such laziness amongst people that they do not even care to remember their own residential telephone numbers let alone any other piece of information. Although it may seem easy to leave your pocket gadget to remember all the information, what if a situation arises where you lose your mobile phone and urgently need to contact home? There may be numerous other occasions on which electronic gadgets may prove to be completely worthless. Why not rely on a gadget that never leaves your side, your brain! Why not utilize the artificial intelligence that comes naturally to us rather than depend on computer programs to emulate our functions (Stair & Reynolds, p. 420). Why not let our brains do the maximum of what they can! Trust me, it is the only gadget that comes handy at weird times.
By now it must be clear to you that I am in complete agreement with the author Nicholas Carr. My decision is not only based on my study but also on my personal experiences. Today, I think that every individual is so overwhelmed by the massive information provided by the Internet that he fails to understand its correct usage. The Internet has altered our lives in such a way that we go wherever it leads us without questioning its reliability or considering its true importance for once. And it has such an impact on our minds that we acquire similar habits even during the “offline” modes of our lives.
I would not go as far as to say that “Google is making us Stupid”, but I am of the opinion that search-engines on the Internet are certainly robbing us of the ability to exhibit who we truly are and what we really believe in. Being a prominent name in industry holding on to a wide ranging audience of web searchers, Google is committed to provide its users scattered across the world with the data-ware house of information (Google Website). Their complex algorithms and mechanisms are doing exactly what the inception of the calculator did to the human brain. The birth of the Internet was definitely a huge advancement for exchange of information throughout the world, but it is high time that we realize its usage to the correct extent.
Google Website. About Google Inc., 2008. Web.
NPR Website. Is the Internet Making Us Stupid?, 2008. Web.
Stair, R. M., and Reynolds, G. W. Principles of Information Systems, Fifth Edition, Thomson Course Technology. (2008).