Sunday, February 15, 2009

Books White Bread for the Mind?

At least that's what Clark Aldrich is saying:

We are very proud of books. Many have a religious zeal about them, especially those old enough to remember when they were scarce, or with strong connections to people who did. We all have books that transformed our view of the world, and influenced moral and career decisions. There is no better way of transferring someone else’s internal monologue than a good book. They teach us empathy and respect. We can also get facts, allowing us to make more informed decisions.

Books are also a great example of mature technology. They are cheap to produce, easy to store, and require no energy or other supporting infrastructure. The only access barrier is literacy. Libraries are filled with them.

And yet, as we try to take what we have read and apply it to real situations in an attempt to get a desired result, we are starting to have our own Atkins “aha’s.” We become increasingly aware of what they don’t contain, such as a focus on actions, and the impact of rigorous systems including the emergent actions of units, as much as what they do contain. We love the buzz of a good book, like a good vacation, but hate the transition back to our world.

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