the shallows book summary

One day, Carr came to the realization that the Internet was not as great as it may seem at first, because it causes users to lose focus. This leads to a discussion of short- and long-term memory. He relates this back to HAL in Kubrick’s 2001, wherein the AI develops emotions and human intelligence becomes artificial. There are no two ways about it. The Net, with its overabundance of rewards, seizes our attention. The reason he can’t concentrate anymore? A quick Google search reveals numerous discussions about how frequent skimming and scrolling have left us unable to maintain focus on books, articles, or even longer blog posts. The highly-developed system of writing you are currently using was refined over a tremendously long period of human history. He has taught others to do the same, and contends that his accomplishment is no different from a baby learning to walk. He quit university at the age of 21 after successfully making the leap to entrepreneurship. Just as primates restructure their minds to make pliers an extension of themselves, we grow neural pathways to better use the web. Summary of The Shallows by Nicholas Carr In 2008, Nicholas Carr’s article in Atlantic Monthly brought to the surface a creeping feeling that many people have begun to voice – have our brains been acting differently as a result of the time we’ve been spending on the internet? Still, it is clear that society has moved past the printed page in many ways. | Privacy Policy. You can help us out by revising, improving and updating I have the same problems, and Carr even says that he reckons most people who use the Internet these days will be suffering the same things. Standardization of time only began to spread after a decree that monks pray at specific times each day. We usually assume that whatever we choose to do is a personal choice, but in reality, it is often the tools we use that direct our thoughts and behavior.

The end result is that we live more and more inside the Internet, and when we need to leave it, we can’t work as well as we previously could.

The Shallows Summary & Study Guide includes comprehensive information and analysis to help you understand the book.

These papers were written primarily by students and provide critical analysis of The Shallows by Nicholas Carr. While Carr says that not all types of distraction are bad, he points out that being rerouted from website to website can be harmful to your mental health. Carr starts off by explaining how he’s been having trouble focussing recently. The brain begins to see the tool as an extension of the hand. Welcome. In chapter five, Carr points out that the ubiquitous use of the Internet for all aspects of life is problematic - as humans, we naturally need separation between our activities. The internet is composed of distractions. Though she is stranded only 200 yards from shore, survival proves to be the ultimate test of wills, requiring all of Nancy's ingenuity, resourcefulness, and fortitude. If you’ve ever wondered how the internet is able to demand so much of your attention, or why the internet is so addictive, this is your answer. In a manner of speaking, the internet has even worked its way into books themselves, in the form of e-readers.

It’s a reasonably technical book that goes in-depth into the workings of our brains to look at how the Internet is affecting the way we “think, read, and remember”. Republishing after being asked by someone for the link. On YouTube, we only ever watch videos in a semi-distracted state because we’re already looking for the next, more exciting video. Much of the Internet’s content is remediations of media that previously existed in print, which has negatively impacted other industries, like newspapers, and affected the way that people expect to see content, typically in the form of short segments. Consider, for example, the clock. As the lines between human and computer interaction continue to blur, we may find we are reshaping ourselves in the technology’s image – becoming, in a manner of speaking, more machine-like. To cope, he replaced pen and paper with a typewriter. He explains how the printed book served to focus our attention, promoting deep and creative thought. He says that he sits down to read a book but finds himself unable to read a page without looking up from the book, and he finds his mind wandering off on tangents quite often.

Animal behavior is almost exclusively explained by that simple phrase. Working, playing, and shopping all became a function of time.

What we gained from writing is surely valuable, but Plato, at least, considered it worthwhile to consider what we lost.

Nicholas Carr’s book The Shallows examines the effect Internet technology is having on the human mind. When monkeys are given simple tools like pliers and rakes, their brains show visual and motor brain expansions, defining circuits to understand how to use the tool.


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