Sunday, January 25, 2009

Future Shock Post

I can't speak for those who experienced technological change in the '70s, but I think right now, in terms at least of my generation, we are impatient for technological change--not intimidated. The cell phone, for example, started out as a huge box with buttons. And now, we use it to take pictures, listen to music, play games, plan our days, send emails and text. Its most basic, essential function--actually being a phone--is its most trivial. Who doesn't eagerly await Apple's press releases announcing new products and features. Who isn't eager to upgrade to a new, shiny iThing.

The information media have already begun to adapt to our propensity for text messages and instant notifications. The New York Times, for example, has a mobile phone service which sends updates directly to subscribers' phones. It gives you "All the News That's Fit to Go"! And news organizations are not only responding with instant messages. Podcasts are another response to technological advancements, providing video or audio bytes for traveling devices and computers. The information media are moving away--have to move away--from print and are converging with other mediums in order to survive the demands of today's technologically impatient consumers.

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