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The Shallows

The Shallows: What the Internet is Doing to Our BrainsThe Shallows: What the Internet is Doing to Our Brains by Nicholas G. Carr

My rating: 3 of 5 stars


The books covers many topics related to reading, writing, learning, and memory as it has been influenced by the growth of the Internet. While there are studies mentioned throughout the book many of the observations felt more derived from anecdotal evidence. While worthy of a read I don't feel the author fully supported his claim.



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My notes:

  • The medium influences us more than content on it [3]
  • Our brains are not fixed [26]
  • Born with templates that are shaped by experience [28
  • Thinking through an action repeatedly is like doing it [33]
  • Can wire bad habits [34]
  • Map and clock are intellectual technologies [44]
  • Technology advances mark turning points in history [48]
  • Oral cultures are more sensuous but harder to advance [57]
  • Spaces and punctuation are introduced in 13th century [62]
  • Writing moved from dictation to author [65]
  • Silent reading [67]
  • Books increased content and accuracy [72]
  • Can't remove importance of book and written word from society [77]
  • TV time is unchanged despite increased Internet time [87]
  • Electronic readers may make us more likely to read, but in different ways [104]
  • Web turns media into social media [106]
  • Lack of final version in books changes author's approach [107]
  • Online activities about recognition and acknowledgment [118]
  • Linear reading leads to higher comprehension [128]
  • People most skim web pages [136]
  • Personal digital system exacerbated information overload [170]
  • External memory allows us to use capacity for other goals [180]
  • Short-term memory is synapse change, long-term memory is anatomical [185]
  • Tools "numbs" our sense while extending it [210]
  • Unhelpful software if learned led to learning more [216]
  • Moral decisions take time [221]

Tags: books

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