Neil Postman talks about people having a low information to action ratio. Me defined I guess.
“The tie between information and action has been severed. Information is now a commodity that can be bought and sold, or used as a form of entertainment, or worn like a garment to enhance one’s status. It comes indiscriminately, directed at no one in particular, disconnected from usefulness; we are glutted with information, drowning in information, have no control over it, don’t know what to do with it.”
Being informed doesn’t make you wise
Looking across the platform at Derriaghy train station it feels almost as if my eye has to go to the other side and carry the light back across.
The colour of the leaves, the rust on the rail track, the damp of the concrete and matt grey of the stone seem to absorb light and become dull making it more of an effort to see. The eye becomes tired with the effort of fetching light and colour. Same in the house late at night.
Dull means eye effort means tiredness means gloom.
So much of our modern life is spent staring into sheets of glass. I’m staring into a sheet of glass typing this.
Light from glass seems magnified and bright, it seems to carry itself to the eye without the eye having to fetch or carry it back.
Gloss means bright means less eye effort means less tiredness means happy associations.
Looking into glass screens for light and a good time is easier than looking at concrete or winter trees for a good time.
My favourite seats in coffee shops are near big sheets of glass. I much prefer the light levels on the train to the bus. I love the reflection and light from the sea.
I’m addicted to the internet, to Facebook, to blogging.
But perhaps it is something else altogether.Perhaps I’m really just addicted to the light source, to the gloss and shine and the way it seems to run into my eye instead of the effort needed to love at the matt things about Lambeg. Glass is dangerous, time for a walk in the dark.
We often change our direction in life and how we would really like to do things to accommodate our machines.
This became clear to me when thinking about the home recording process. Often I have a melody and clear idea in my head of how I would like a song to be. Yet there is another involved in the process, the machine.
My banjo does not possess the skill to change the way he sounds, to stay in tune no matter where I go on the fret board and so I change to accommodate him. I must drop the banjo lick high up the fret board and stick to something that will suit him. He has moulded me and my work, my song has been changed. He doesn’t have the capacity to change.
That’s not to say that the end result is always going to be bad, it’s just to be aware that the limitations of the tool colour the sound and feel of the song. It was a partnership, but an inequal one.
What about the computer and the internet? How does it’s limitations alter the way we would like to go in life?
Sometimes the idea that we can connect and network to people around the world seems to offer us endless opportunities, a chance to change the world.
Yet are we being moulded by our machines?Do we realise that we’re being targeted by corporations intent on making money? Or that we’re only really connected to wealthy world?
Are we being moulded into imbalanced human beings, beings that are big on lazy sight and using our brain (to a certain extent) but being denied the touch of real people in exchange for the touch of plastic.