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Books and the Internet: Increased Connectivity and Dislocation of Cognition: End Of Chirography to Viral Streaming

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The Internet And Books

Computers have advanced greatly because of the ability to handle, manipulate, and calculate large amounts of information.  It has allowed for us all to be able to at first not rely on our mathematical ability and to provide a device that could do it

Computers have advanced greatly because of the ability to handle, manipulate, and calculate large amounts of information. It has allowed for us all to be able to at first not rely on our mathematical ability and to provide a device that could do it

Connectivity - Internet Nerve Connections- Books

Gigantic Books symbolically towering over libraries as a sign of their being live and continuously in our midst

Gigantic Books symbolically towering over libraries as a sign of their being live and continuously in our midst

Barnes and Noble has launched a new Nookcolor, e-reader with color touch screen, and can be used to read books, magazines, newspapers and and expanded array of children's tirltles.It comes with games, Internet browsing, and music streaming

Barnes and Noble has launched a new Nookcolor, e-reader with color touch screen, and can be used to read books, magazines, newspapers and and expanded array of children's tirltles.It comes with games, Internet browsing, and music streaming

Old Fashion Paper Printed Books of yesteryear

Old Fashion Paper Printed Books of yesteryear

Readers of old fashioned books and e-readers are pntificating about which has the higher carbon footprint, a Kindle or a Conventional Book? Well, there are valid points on both sides which we will explore a bit within the Hum

Readers of old fashioned books and e-readers are pntificating about which has the higher carbon footprint, a Kindle or a Conventional Book? Well, there are valid points on both sides which we will explore a bit within the Hum

A kaleidoscopic of viewing screens affording an opportunity to view all beamed up material from diverse sources in one take.

A kaleidoscopic of viewing screens affording an opportunity to view all beamed up material from diverse sources in one take.

Internet Interconnectivity which mirrors the human nervous system

Internet Interconnectivity which mirrors the human nervous system

A University in Venezuela is using a novel method to take books into remote communities and encouraging people to read. Improving Cognition

A University in Venezuela is using a novel method to take books into remote communities and encouraging people to read. Improving Cognition

Books now can be published on the internet through a series of chapters and the authors will control content and get immediate feedback and eliminate storage

Books now can be published on the internet through a series of chapters and the authors will control content and get immediate feedback and eliminate storage

A Screen Grab from the current Google Books Service. The Internet giant is attempting to create the World's largest online library

A Screen Grab from the current Google Books Service. The Internet giant is attempting to create the World's largest online library

While some local book sellers have been hurt by the Internet and other emerging technologies, Monroe Street Books owner Dick Chodkowski as expanded his business and now sells to a world-wide clientele.

While some local book sellers have been hurt by the Internet and other emerging technologies, Monroe Street Books owner Dick Chodkowski as expanded his business and now sells to a world-wide clientele.

Technology and technique also help us to upgrade our diminished cognition health-wise; spiritually and intellectually

Technology and technique also help us to upgrade our diminished cognition health-wise; spiritually and intellectually

What happens when we can't trust what we wee with our own eyes. voyeurs in this caption hear unnerving scenarios behind them, only to discover an empty room on turning around.

What happens when we can't trust what we wee with our own eyes. voyeurs in this caption hear unnerving scenarios behind them, only to discover an empty room on turning around.

Sales of e-books continue to soar, and they seem to be accelerating the Death of Printed books which are on paper

Sales of e-books continue to soar, and they seem to be accelerating the Death of Printed books which are on paper

Retailers are betting that tablet devices may be the big back-to-school sell for this Fall(2011)

Retailers are betting that tablet devices may be the big back-to-school sell for this Fall(2011)

CD and Mobile music fall in 2010, but Vinyl continues its resurgence. This comes partly from live DJs who prefer vinyl over digital and partly form a new generation of collectors who see them as valuable souvenirs

CD and Mobile music fall in 2010, but Vinyl continues its resurgence. This comes partly from live DJs who prefer vinyl over digital and partly form a new generation of collectors who see them as valuable souvenirs

Computers, cell phone and other electronic goods have short shelve lives. As a result, the tremendous amount of waste, much of it toxic, and as hazardous material is shipped to Africa or Asia

Computers, cell phone and other electronic goods have short shelve lives. As a result, the tremendous amount of waste, much of it toxic, and as hazardous material is shipped to Africa or Asia

Not all papers are recyclable in the same way: It depends on inks used; it depends on glues used; it depends on how many times you recycle the same paper

Not all papers are recyclable in the same way: It depends on inks used; it depends on glues used; it depends on how many times you recycle the same paper

A model of the Google Chrome book on display at a product announcement in San Francisco.

A model of the Google Chrome book on display at a product announcement in San Francisco.

Cognitive Connectivity

In these days of fast changing and emerging, merging, inter and intra-acting morphing and submerging technologies and their technological gadgets and the embedded techniques, the past chirographic culture and how it transmitted information to those seeking it, has today gone to be virtually streaming and viral; so, there is a perception as if the present modes of information dissemination and storage are a new phenomenon engendered by these machines, which makes it very important for us to begin to understand how, when and how we got to this point in our mass consuming and the virtual information reality and meaning we are faced with today.

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One other point to note is that J, David Bolter is right that possibly the future computers will emerge as as a new kind of book, expanding and enriching the tradition of writing technologies.

Postman writes" "Since printing created new form of literature when it replaced the handwritten manuscript, it is possible that electronic writing will do the same. But for the moment, computer technology functions more as a new mode of transportation than as a new means of substantive communication."

The computer, in fact, makes possible the fulfillment of Descartes dream of the mathematizing of the world. Attend any conference on telecommunications or computer technology, and you will be attending a celebration of innovative machinery that generates, stores, and distributes more information, more conveniently, at greater speeds than before.

This is the elevation of information to a metaphysical status: information as both the means and end of human creativity. As with so many of the features of all that is modern; the origins of information glut can be traced many centuries back. Nothing could be more misleading than the claim that computer technology introduced the age of information.

The printing press began the age in the early sixteenth century. Forty years After Gutenberg converted an old wine press into a printing machine with movable type, there were presses in 110 cities in six different countries. Fifty years after the press was invented, more than eight million books had been printed, almost all of them filled with information that had previously been unavailable to the average person.

There were books of law, agriculture, politics, exploration, metallurgy, botany, linguistics, pediatrics and even good manners. There were also assorted guides and manulas, the world of commerce rapidly became a world of printed paper through the widespread used of contracts, deeds, promissory notes, and maps."

It is important for us to know the history of books before one can make wild claims about the computer being the originator of the information highway and provider, as it exists today. Postman further informs us thus: 'So much new information, of so many diverse types, was generated that printers could no longer use the scribal manuscript as their model of a book.'

By the mid-sixteenth century, printers began to experiment with new formats, among the most important innovations being the use of Arabic numerals to number pages (The first known example of such pagination is Johann Froben's first edition of Erasmus' New Testament, printed in 1516.)

Pagination led inevitably to more accurate indexing, annotation, and cross-referencing, which in turn was accompanied by innovations in punctuation marks, section heads, paragraphing, title-paging, and running heads. by the end of the sixteenth century, the machine-made book had a typographic form and a look comparable to books of today."

By the time Gutenberg introduced and invented the printing press, the bible was the most widely read manuscript. The print culture itself present a myriad of problems of the day. The printing of books presented itself to the criticism that it was a runaway technology that would lead to a cultural crisis.

Marshall McLuhan pointed to the loss of familiar historical perspectives. He pronounced historical modes of inquiry as obsolete and the Age of Gutenberg as an end. He pointed out to the special problems posed by print media. The increased load and rate of publication leading Mc Luhan to pointing out how this overload of printing could lead to incoherence.

There were consequences that came about with the importance of the shift from script to print in the Fifteenth century, This facilitated for shift in the areas which were experiencing change in modern Europe. The shift from script to print meant that a large ensemble of changes, and one of them was that an increased reliance on rule books was not good as learning then up to that time.

The shift from the books to the Internet brings along some changes which affected the culture of reading books. The discipline brought about reading a whole book was seemingly going to be lost in the change. While the internet brings about global connectivity, at the same time it erodes what book reading does and has as it effects the reader.

On the net, the logger or webber surfs, logs and can retrieve information form a diverse sources. They can also read, but the reading activity is a different activity from reading a book. There are pop ups and other activities that one engages in on the internet; there are Blogs and newspapers, magazines and scholarly research papers and so forth.

The explosion of the Internet brought with it a new language. The language of books can be used by readers to develop the themes of their own books. The language of the Internet is now used by both laymen, linguistics and language students to develop their newly acquired multi-tasking skills and web surfing know-how and emerging, merging and submerging ways and meanings of viral communications of communication:

Memes - memes can refer to an idea, concept, phrase or any other unit of information that goes viral; or it can mean pictures, videos, links and other content that spreads quickly from on person to another through the Internet.

Very early on, it was understood that the printed book had created an information crisis and that something needed to be done to maintain to maintain a measure of control. The altered form of the book was one means. ... The rapid growth of common schools was made obvious and possible as a necessary response to the anxieties and confusion by information on the loose.

The invention of what is called curriculum was a logical step toward organizing, limiting, and discriminating among available sources of information. Schools were, in short, a means of governing the ecology of infornation." Today we see the proliferation of laptops which have changed the culture and facade of classroom aesthetics, forms and ways of knowing and learning

Books and Reading.

From the early times of the first printed books, the most important of them was the Bible and the Book of Nature. Even when the books were printed, they did not immediately effect the spreading of knowledge as they do today.. Galileo was of the view that books like the book of nature although they were open for public inspection, was not really given to eery man to know and read. But as books become common over the years, and in the US, books were made available to its population, the acquirement of more knowledge, along with rhetoric developed. This in turn encouraged the readers of books to acquire ways of reading analytically and be able to write their own books too.

A person reads for many reasons and in many different ways. Whatever ones reason and method , reading is most rewarding when you do it in thoughtful spirit, and with an alert and inquiring mind, preferably with a pencil or pen in hand. Reading analytically in this way helps one get more form your reading because you will remember and understand what you read fully. Analytical reading will be useful to a person and all the aspects of their lives. Reading analytically helps one succeed in school, excel in the workplace, and better interact with the world around one. Among all these positive outcomes, one of the greatest benefits of analytical reading is that it helps people become better writers. By becoming an active reader this in turn makes one becomes a stronger writer. By becoming more familiar with the different type of writing, and this sharpens the mind and critical thinking skills; and, in the process learn how good writers make decisions in their writing.

Another way of looking at the effects of the Internet on books, is that Librarians find the internet to be a blessing. It provides opportunities to add services and expand their collections; but, it has also increased user expectations and contributed to techno-stress. The net, today, is challenging librarians with new problems of access, preservation, serious demands on budgets and occupying information professionals with legal problems and controversies. While the Internet seems to be looming on the technological horizon, you see, from the library of Congress, Center for the Book promoting literacy in the libraries and encouraging historical study of books, reading and printed word. The center's web site www.loc.gov/cfbook is a resource linking 250 organizations, country-wide. Another site worth looking at is www..loc.gov/bookfest is involved with community reading projects throughout the country. Books also presented knowledge as managed by the few; Internet is knowledge provided for and managed by the many. Books and those who control their production are characterized by a style of feudal academic,knowledge exchange system, whereas, the web creates a new forum and format of reading and learning and intellect, yet has the ability to disconnect focus, concentration and book reading. Jacques Ellul, quoted in Norris 1991:158 says: "The answer is simple enough, this definition ... is false [that's right: false, not true] and feeble: it supposes a bad [that's right, bad, not good] and feeble reading of numerous texts, first of all mine, which therefore must finally be read or re-read." Although a disconnect is happening between reading books and surfing the net, there is some considerable writing and reading on the net that it might take some time to discard the culture of reading a book. I know there are some internet book already used and circulating, I still think book reading structures the mind and disciplines thinking and writing. This will make relevant Clifford Geertz's point that: "intellectual debate is to allow its participants to vex each other with ever greater precision, precisely in order to ensure some measure of overall intellectual advance." The discipline acquired from reading books and writing books is what streamlines and constructs our minds to be able to advance our peers and those in the past. I am not sure how it is translating in terms of reading in the Internet in these days of blogging, texting and twittering. I think some publishing rules have been relaxed and grammar rules and the efficiency one finds in books is more lax. Books are still being bought and sold and published, so maybe the world of reading books is still open to anyone who wants to read books, or, as the Internet has afforded, listened to. Books teach us how to 'read between the lines' and they also help and teach us how to 'write between the lines'. The latter is attained if one is determined to do the most efficient kind of reading because we buy books and own them, but we need to read them.

Some people by best sellers and leave them unread and untouched. Others have many books, read some, dipped into most of them, the rest left still new and never ever been read. Some have a few books or many. Each and everyone has dogears, decrepit and dilapidated, shaken and loosened by continual used and marked, underlined, highlighted and scribbled from back to front. We can simply say that the last man owns his books. Books teach us to learn whenever we mark them up. This helps us to keep awake, and active reading is a thinking, and when we think we tend to express it with words, spoke or written. In the end, writing helps us remember the thoughts one had, or the author's thoughts. Books teach us speed reading, which does not necessarily make one intelligent, because some books need to be read faster, others slowly. Intelligent reading means being able to read different things differently and according to their worth. Marked books cannot be borrowed to others, but they remain a kind of intellectual diary, and lending them out is like giving your mind away to someone. Books, and their other effects are too numerous to list here, but, I thought it was important to remind us of some values that are brought about by books and reading books.

Are we Now More Intelligent?

Nicholas Carr writes: "Is Google making us stupid? Over the past few years I have had an uncomfortable sense that someone, or someone, has been tinkering with my brain, remapping the neural circuitry, reprogramming the memory. My mind is not going-as far as I can tell, but it's changing. I am not thinking the way I used to think. I can feel it strongly when I am reading. Immersing myself in a book or a lengthy article used to be easy. My mind would get caught-up in the narrative or the turns of the argument, and I'd spend hours strolling through the long stretches of prose. That's rarely the case anymore. Now my concentration often starts to drift after two or three pages. I get fidgety, lose the thread, begin looking for something else to do. I feel as if I'm always dragging my wayward brain back to the text. The deep reading that used to come naturally has become a struggle." What seems to be coming through is that the users of the Internet are not reading online in the traditional sense of reading a book with its chapters. The usage of the internet has its own transforming effects on our ability to read and think, as we did when reading and thinking what we read on the book. Carr states that the internet promises to have particularly far reaching effect on cognition. He further states that: "The Internet, an immeasurably powerful computing system, is subsuming most of our other intellectual technologies. It's becoming our map and our clock, our printing press and our typewriter, our calculator and our telephone, and our radio and TV". Are we really becoming smarter or dumber? The racy nature of the culture of the internet, surfing, googling, e-mailing, posting, commenting, texting, faxing, blogging, searching, all seem to affect and effect our attention span and 'reprogramming our memories',as noted by Carr. In this case, technology and the technique embedded within it are taking over the functions of our mental abilities and capabilities; we have already ceded our core being and acquired a dependency on all the emerging technological gadgets and their 'efficiencies- seems like technology has taken over our lives, and we have an indefatigable craving and dependency on its wizardry and coping techniques embedded therein.

Carr wraps his rapport thus: "When the net absorbs a medium, that medium is re-created in the Net's image. It injects the medium's content with hyperlinks, blinking ads, and other digital gewgaws, and it surrounds the content with the content of all the other media it has absorbed. A new e-mail message, for instance, may announce its arrival as we're glancing over the latest headlines at a newspaper's site. The result is to scatter our attention and diffuse concentration." Old media have little choice but play by the new-media's rule. Never has a communications system played so many roles in our lives-or exerted such broad influence over our thoughts, as the Internet does today. Yet, for all that has been written about the Net, there's been little consideration of how, exactly, it's reprograming us. The net's intellectual ethic remains obscure." Carr has given us a sense of what and how these activities infuse,diffuse mesh and morph within our consciousness and intellect And ways of learning and life. The advance that have been made in interactive and inter-connective telecommunications has but in a few years changed the way we communicate and interact with one another, understand, know, perceive, talk,w write- the whole gamut. The Internet itself is not a dangerous entity. It is a positive and highly beneficial to improving our education, information exchange and commerce in the coming years. It also has a downside of effects that we will need to explore in another Hub.

Is the Internet a Clear and Present Danger?

But, the darker side of the medium is characterized by Dave Barry this way: "The Internet as a worldwide network of university, government,business, and private computer systems, run by thirteen year old named Jason." One could say that the way this technology is evolving the Internet is accessible to children as it is inaccessible to many adults. Children have accessibility to this new technology independent of their parents. Whenever the policy makers consider the Internet in the public interest, the whole public and children must be seen as individual participant in the cyber juggernaut.

We still need to understand the media that we are handling and d We tend to glorify technological process and not look at its effects and affects. We become blinded by its innovations as a kid is blinded by a new and shiny toy. But, there is a method to this fast moving stem. Carr interestingly states: "The idea that our minds should operate as high speed data processing machine not only built into the workings of the Internet, it is the network's reigning business model as well. The faster we surf across the Web, the more links we click and pages we view, the more opportunities Google and other companies gain to collect information about us and to feed us advertisements. Most of the proprietors of the Commercial Internet have a financial stake in collecting the crumbs of data we leave behind as we flip from link to link, the more crumbs, the better. The last thing these companies want is to encourage leisurely reading, or slow, concentrated thought. It's their economic interest to drive us to distraction"..

Book printing and prolonged reading brought about by books has readers who display the incoherence the internet creates creating a dislocation of cognition to people. We are still learning the effects and affects of this new system of super knowledge and so forth. Are we getting any smarter because we use the internet more or read books less? We will find out more on this topic on the research and the time needed to be much clearer. The Internet can be of service if it can be placed in the service of humanity, and promotes our integral development for the benefit of all. If increased connectivity leads to cognitive dissonance, we must then work very hard to put the Internet into coherence. Take the example of Book Publishing and the Internet. Today's technology allows writers who want to author books in front of the audience can do so. Unlike the traditional publishing customs that take from 18 to 24 months, or some which require some substantial investment of the author's money, a novel written in series on the Internet let writers control their content, track hits and read feedbacks. It also eliminates storage and inventory requirements.

Spatial changes give a tone to a communication, accent it, and at times even override the spoken world. The flow and shift of distance between people as they interact with each other is part and parcel of the communication process. The normal conversational distance between strangers illustrates how important are the dynamics of space interaction. In social and intra-interpersonal relationships give birth to socialized interactive reactions. The normal conversational distance between strangers is instantaneous and automatic the other person backs up. And if he gets too close again,, back we go again. For instance, one can observe this in American behavior, who will back up the entire length of a long corridor while a foreigner whom he considers pushy tries to catch up with him. This scene has been enacted thousands of times - one person trying to increase the distance in order to be at ease, while the other tries to decrease it for the same reason, either one being aware of what was going on. If one were to observe then, we have here an example of the tremendous depth to which culture can condition behavior.

In addition, new technologies linked to computers, telephones, digital devices, satellites, and other fiber optic lines have dramatically multiplied and personalized the media choices available to the public. They have also created a culture through which they condition our behavior, actions, thoughts and reality. This in turn affect us in a myriad ways; the bewildering array of communication technologies were under development by large corporations and smaller entrepreneurs, with many devices being promoted as the communication technology that could dominate the others in the future.(J. Bittner) But by the mid-1990s it was clear that no single technology or channel would dominate the communication media landscape of the future. Instead, people learned to pick and choose from different media, all of them according to a wider range of choices. In the past, new technologies were billed as the key to the mass audience, but in the 1990s new media technologies and services were touted for their ability to pinpoint, target, and deliver information to targeted segments of the public and turn profits at the same time. They made their money not from mass audience, but by slicing, targeting, and reaching desired segments in the mass audience. These technological advances accelerated the media transition from mass communication to class communication. These in turn these class relations into mass communicated, media dominated conditioned relationships.

Throughout the electronic age, people have become accustomed to interacting with digital media indirectly, mediated through screens and peripheral devices. But now, as digital technology becomes invisibly embedded in everyday things, the "feeling" of everyday things is also increasingly becoming ensconced, encrypted and embedded in digital technology. In many senses, physical objects are becoming more important. In an immediate way, they can help us define new systems of relationships with digital information. This shapes how perceptions and gestures formed through our experiences with physical products can effectively liberty to the relationship between brain, body and digital media interface." People have learned how patterns and archetypes from products design now frame new ways for people to orientate themselves around information; how that principle of stimulating one sense through another to create multi-sensory interactions. People have gained cognizance of the new developments at the collision point between the "real world" objects and "digital interfaces."

The Death of the Book; Emergence of the E-Book

In regards to the death of books, S. David Mash informs us thus: "In his 1979 book, "The Micro Millennium, Evans forecasted that due to electronic media, "the 1980s will see the book as we know it, and as our ancestors created and cherished it, begin a slow but steady side into oblivion.... there are a number of reasons this is imminent." Evans reasons notwithstanding."the book as we know it" did better than survive the decade - it thrived at unprecedented levels in terms of both publishing volume and sales. At the end of the 1980s, The Center for the Application of Technology to Biblical and Theological Studies published its forecast that by the end of the 1990s, every college student would be required to own a PC, e-mail would include talking replicas of the individual sending the e-mail in full color 3-D image and 20D40% of White collar workers would operate from intelligent video work centers in their home. Book reading robots would be developed and over 90% of the word's extant print media would be in digital form. All magazines would be in video format and very little information would continue to be printed on paper.But the book has thrived in the 1990s as it did in the 1980s at unprecedented levels in terms of both publishing volume and sales," (see Picture in Picture gallery).

Paperless Reality and the emerging E- Book Industry

Given the advantages of the humble book, it seems inconceivable that it could ever be replaced by an electronic reader. But, just as the music, film and television industries have been forced to grapple with the consequences of the internet, publishers are facing up to the digital threat. In the latest in a series of industry moves to embrace the digital world, Random House announced that it would allow readers to download chapters of books. HarperCollins, which is owned by New Corporation, parent company of the The Times, has revealed plans to allow readers access to previews of new titles online. British and American publishers have thus far rushed to digitalize their back catalogues. The slow death of the book may be with us. Most bibliophiles balk at the merest hint that digital e-books could replace "ral books". But vinyl-lovers sneered at CDs. Those who lovingly categorized their CD collections were seduced, in turn, by the i-Pod Just as the ancient poets who sung the of the wrath of Achilles from memories, were indignant when some young turk suggested writing the Iliad down for the first time.

Much has been written about the tactile relationship that a reader has with a book that will fend off the Internet challenge. But the real savior of books has been their simplicity and their portability, as well as lack of a real alternative. A new generation of e-books is emerging that will will challenge the real book. Amazon has launched its Kindle e-book, which although it has not yet been as effective outside the US, the bibliophiles should be very afraid. Also, Barnes and Noble has launched its 'Nookcolor reader' touch screen, which in effect shows the emergence of various kinds of e-books as the decades and years roll bye. It may be difficult, and painful, to predict that the e-book will vanquish the real book, but publishers have to work on the assumption that it could happen. Businesses and reference books are already making the transition to e-books. The ability to search chunks of texts an carry huge reference books in your palm is invaluable to some professions. Already, law libraries stand empty as lawyers search cases on their computers. The transition for the fiction reader will be sower, but it is a real possibility that the real book will suffer the same fate as the law libraries.

Less Paper or More Downloads

Reading a Book Is still Fundamental

According to David Mash, "There's a saying that "prediction is difficult, especially of the future." Yet the death-of-the-book-as-we-know-it forecasters ply their trade with confidence. It seems there is no test oft he prophet in this business an every few years the terms of the prophecy are retooled to reflect the latest technology. Everyone has a new epiphany and the cycle rolls over once more. With the new millennium before us [already now past its first decade- my addition], we are assured anew that paper-based information delivery is on the verge of total collapse(again) [and even to date- my addition], and that full content, high-quality virtual libraries and e-books-a-million sites will spontaneously materialize over the Internet to fill the void.. Access will be unencumbered and inexpensive(or free). soon, we are promised, e-book reading devices costing less than &100 will weigh half a pound and hold one million titles. And Steven Levy admonishes: "So, "Forget Paper... here come e-books...the physical object consisting of bound dead trees in shiny wrapper is headed for the antique heap.... books are goners." Indeed, the children of students beginning college in the fall of 200 "are maybe never going to see a book." [see photo in the Picture Gallery Wherein one see how children in the Fall of 2011 will begin using Tablets], and somewhat solidifying the point just made by Susan Mallow. For a quarter of century the prospect of the death of the book has receded on the horizon . Reality can be downright downright stubborn! Decades of evocative visions have produced an evocative vision industry. But tangible assets making it possible to abate our dependence on paper-based information remain far from realized. Even with the phenomenal growth growth in size and importance of the Internet and other digital information formats, paper-bsed information continues to grow unchecked. Through the decade of the 1990s, the period of the rise of the Internet as the latest hope for a digitized future, paper-based information delivery steadily increased at levels exceeding the pre-Internet era. A recent four year study(Tulip Final Report), among nine leading leading American Universities(Carnegie Mellon University), concluded, against prior expectations of study participants, that the end of paper-based information is not on the visible horizon. Reason include more expense, less user satisfaction, and greater technical complexities associated with managing large digital collections vis-a-vis large paper collections.(David Mash)

Less paper and more downloads means that a lot of people are going to be left out of the educational loop. This means that a lot of people are going to be made and left more illiterate before the advent of the computer, and at the same will have less access to books because the new technological Internet juggernaut has about taken over written text in a book format. According to Jose Marti: "Education was a natural right, and by being born, everyone acquired "the right to be educated, and then, in turn, the duty of contributing to the education of of other(Each one teach one; each one reach one- African American mantra and saying). Education was the one fundamental necessity for democracy and freedom, for "an educated country will always be free." Marti adds: "Education should be so common among women that one who has it is not noticed nor does she herself notice it. ...The men or women who lacked elementary knowledge would not be able to fulfill themselves, either individually or socially. Knowing how to read is knowing how to walk. Knowing how to write is know how to ascend. Feet, arms, wings, all these are given to man by his first and most humble schoolbooks. ...Ignorance and superstition makes barbarians of men in in every nation. The lesson to be learned from studying the history of man (told by way of his houses) was that man is the same everywhere, and appears and progresses in the same way, and makes and thinks the same things, their only differences being those determined by the lands in which they live. All peoples of the world know one another better and visit back and forth. There are more young people than old in tis world. Most of humanity is composed of youths and children. Youth is the age of growth and development, activity and liveliness, imagination and impetuousity. When you have failed to take good care of your heart and mind while young, you may well fear that your old ge will be desolate and sad."

Finally, Marti writes: "An ignorant people can be deceived by superstition and become servile. An instructed people will always be strong and free. an ignorant man is on his way to becoming a beast, and a man instructed in knowledge and conscience is on his way to being a god. One must not hesitate to choose between a nation of gods and a nation of beasts. The best way to defend our rights is to know them well; in so doing, one has faith and strength; every nation will be unhappy in proportion to how poorly educated are its inhabitants. A nation of educated men will always be a nation of free men. Education is the only means of being saved from slavery. A nation enslaved to men of another is as repugnant as being enslaved to the men of one's own."

One of the topics left out in this article is books written by Black writers. Nathaniel Sheppard writes: "There is a new Black literary club on the Web that I think you will enjoy. It is called the African American Literature Book Club at www.aalbc.com. Started in march, the site offers more than 250 pages of content, a virtual poetry reading section with sound clips of poets reading their works, hundreds of book descriptions and dozens of book reviews. There also are writer resource material, movie review, an Afrocentric crossword puzzle and an at-times interesting stream of consciousness column by someone named Clinque. You can discuss books, writing, marketing and other areas of interest related to literature on the site's discussion forum. The literary club club offers free Web page design, hosts chats with authors and links to other sites of interest to African Americans."

Sheppard adds: "The book club partners with Barnes and noble, which provides a link to the bookstore allowing you to buy books online. Be warned: The Barnes and Noble site, with the lure of big discounts, can be expensive. You can browse other Web sites for a better deal. For example, Drum and spear Books (www.drumandspear.com, another online service that specializes in African-American literature, offers a 20 percent discount on most of its inventory. The well-organized site has a new releases page, a section for children's titles, as well as romance, and also sells calendars, crafts and gourmet cuisine. The African American Literature Book Club has books by Chinua Achebe, Maya Angelou, and one gets a list of their works, which if purchased in total would gobble-up ones purse. The AALBC increases everyone's knowledge of the richness that is African American Literature and a forum for free and open exchange of ideas and opinions on African American Literture." The even offer it in the Blog a Kindle Edition)

According to Sheppard: "It accomplishes these goals, to a degree, despite a Web page whose top level fails to clearly lay out a path for this. Rather than establish a road map visitors could ollow and make most of this site, the book club's appeals for support. Visitors are left to explore the site by clicking on one of the 14 navigation buttons. Nonetheless, once inside this hidden jewel of a site, there are ample features hold your attention and enhance your appreciation of Black authors and their literature. The site's promo says it contains profiles of 150 authors. Click the Author profile button to go to the authors section. Its text too, is primarily concerned with sales, but their page has navigation buttons on the left for the list of authors grouped by category: females, males, new authors, poets, gay and lesbian, Harlem Renaissance and religious and spiritual. The link to female authors takes you to a page that lists 14 writers. Clicking on a name pops up lists on their works, photos of book covers and some reviews. But there is a little, if anything, to tell you about the authors. It is the same with the male authors link. Of 18 listed, only Aesop from ancient greece is profiled. You either know the others or get to know them thorugh the works that are highlighted."

We read further from Sheppard when he states: "Perhaps the most useful and complete area of this site is its Writer Resources section. It is a model of what the rest of the site could be. It first offering is a list of 2,600 publishers, which can be downloaded in Microsoft Excel spreadsheets software through FTP download. It also contains the e-mail addresses of more than 900 media outlets authors could use to get their materials published, a list of African American bookstores organized by states, a list of dozens of magazines that accept poetry and other submissions, ad a list of reading groups organized by location. ...Another touch is their site's Virtual Poetry Reading page from which you can click on the photos of writers and hear sound clip of them reading their works. This page features authors such as R. Spotty King, Jaci LaMon, Angelou, brooke susan parker, Rita Dove and David Hunter. If you want to weigh-in with your own opinions or reviews of books, you can do so in Thumper's Corner, the site's message board discussion area. Several threaded discussions already are underway on authors, their works and issues in Black Literature. Access is from the site's main page." By now, this site had improved a lot and it is worth checking. This brings about the good uses of the internet and the propagation of books and reading- whether online or the book itself.

The hope is that the new technologies and the systems, Internet in this case, will not take over our abilities and capabilities to be diverse in our reading and independent in our thinking, and unique in our behaviors, it will or might only enhance our reading, which has not yet been the case. A mass public, dominated by the culture of new technologies and gadgets, which creates a culture in this consuming milieu o new high tech, might end up losing their authentic human-beingness. Also, we are positing and arguing that the Internet is chaos, depended on the order we bring to it individually, to manage it, or that our liberty depends on chaos which is to misunderstand the Internet and the nature of our liberty. Books in this case will remain the guiding light in the era of darkness and ignorance- books and reading will always remain fundamental.

Technical Progress Is Always Ambiguous

Our last example has to do with the problem of the intellectual culture of the masses. True, today's technical means permit a mass culture to exist. Television allows people who never visited a theatre in their lives to see performances of great classics. Paris Match, through its articles, allows masses of people who would be in total ignorance without such articles to attain to a certain literary (and even to a certain aesthetic) culture. But,on the other side of the ledger, it must be recorded that this same technical progress leads to an ever increasing cultural superficiality. Technical progress absolutely forbids certain indispensable conditions of a genuine culture, viz., reflection and opportunity for assimilation. We are indeed witnessing the creation of knowledge, since we are in possession of the means of knowing what we could never have known before; but it is nevertheless a superficial development because it is one which is purely quantitative.

The intellectual no longer has any time to mediate on a book and must choose between two alternatives: either he reads through a whole collection of books rapidly, of which a little later but a few fragments survive-scattered bits of vague knowledge; or, he takes a year to peruse a few books thoroughly. to do them justice would require months and months; but today's technique forbids any such thing. Exactly the same holds for the problems of imaginaton. We can be in contact with the whole painting and sculpture of humanity; but this availability has no cultural value comparable to spending years studying, statue by statue, the ensemble of artistic works at ones disposal. This in the end penetrates our personality slowly but fully. So that we can see that Technique allows us to progress quantitatively to the level of culture spoken of, but at the same time interdicts us from making any progress in depth. We cannot believe that technique brings us nothing, but we must not think that what i brings is free of charge.

With the coming of the Internet and all the emerging technologies and new gizmos, we are launched into a world of an astonishing degree of complexity; at every step we let loose new problems and raise new difficltues. We succeed progressively in solving these difficulties, but only in such a way that when one has been resolved, we are confronted by another. People have developed a short attention-span due to the nature of the fast moving viral primordial surfing streams. This has affected the ind-depth and deep needed reading into books which would affect our thinking; and our thinking, because of the shortness of time allowed by the new techniques embedded in the type of reading one has to do on the Web, has increased dyslexia and deep thinking that comes with reading whole sets of books. Technical progress is always ambiguous, and such is the progress of technonology in our society.