Are we digital zombies?

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Registered: 02-21-2003
Are we digital zombies?
Tue, 12-15-2009 - 1:59pm

From an interesting article on MSNBC Digital Zombies

According to a recent landmark study of viewing habits, adults spend an average of nearly three hours a day interacting with computer screens. Add TV viewing and you get a screen time of about 8 1/2 hours. "People are spending more time in media and especially screen media than anything else they're doing in life," says Bill Moult of Sequent Partners, one of two organizations that provided the study...

Actually, we have become symbionts, says Katherine Hayles, author of "How We Became Posthuman." Just as a lichen is the marriage of a fungus and an algae, we now live in full partnership with digital technology, which we rely on for the infrastructure of our lives. "If every computer were to crash tomorrow, it would be catastrophic," she says. "Millions or billions of people would die. That's the condition of being a symbiont."

Hayles is among a number of intellectuals who see this dependence as not necessarily bad, but as advancing civilization and, above all, just inevitable. "From Thoreau on, we have had this dream we can withdraw from our technologies and live closer to the natural world, and yet that's not the cultural trajectory that we have followed," says Hayles, a professor of literature at Duke University. "You could say when humans started to walk upright, we lost touch with the natural world. We lost an olfactory sense of the world, but obviously bipedalism paid big dividends."...

What do you all think? I like the comment in the last paragraph about gardens being the best place to begin a reeducation.


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