How loud is a like?

What can we do to help? That’s a common question in today’s world where so many awful things happen on the day-to-day. As I said in my last post a lot of things we see get ignored, most things just don’t interest us to pay attention for the five minutes it would take to read about something that we could help with, and even if we did read something and like or share it as we watched and read for Tuesday this is not necessarily going to help a issue at all. That said, it doesn’t hurt to be interested in something. For a lot of people liking or sharing is all they can do due to their situation, cause you can’t really ask a 17 year old to fly over to Africa for a protest or for a parents to donate tons of money to their favorite charity when they have kids to take care of. In this text by Nathan Teske at the top of page 32 he looks at the question, “Why would someone want to do that all the time?” He looks at it from the both the confused and admiring side of things. To many it would be great if they could help out and go actively join a the movement that they support or donate a few thousand dollars every year to something they care about, but many just can’t.

That said as we saw in the Jenkins reading, those willing to do simpler things and participate in social media can be more likely to become more and more active as their lives go on and as they acquire more time. If we really like something we will pursue it, its part of being human. For every human being that is too lazy to do anything at all there is someone else who is just waiting to get out of school or to retire so that they can spend the rest of their lives helping people or contributing a cause.

So are people really just so desensitized that they don’t want to help or are people just “slacktivists”? Or are many just waiting to find the time and cause that they want to dedicate themselves to?


Brain train(ing)

Are we robots? Are we some weird collective consciousness that is constantly trying to identify what it means to be human? I really don’t think so, though it is entirely possible that humans being robotic in nature might not really be that totally far off from reality. As quoted by Nicholas Carr, “The brain has the ability to reprogram itself on the fly, altering the way it functions.” Does this not sound robotic? Does it matter? I argue that it does not, it is just one of the wonderful parts of being human.

We can change our minds, and not only in regards to opinions but in regards to how we think about stuff. To me that is incredibly cool, it is a perfect example of human evolution through time. Where the problems really start are where they always started, which is that people are scared of change. As we have read people feared writing when it first began, and I’d reach to say people probably feared the wheel too. That is what we are currently going through as a race in regards to all this rapidly evolving and emerging technology.

An older Wall Street Journal article discuss several points that have been made for and against technology and how it affects writing and thinking, and the part that I love most about it is a short point towards the end, “Whatever the mix of good and bad, technology only advances and cannot be put back in the bottle.” I love this statement so much as it really embodies my two biggest thoughts regarding technological evolution and how it affects us. The first is that there is ultimately nothing we can do about the change as it is happening, so we might as well make the most out of it and learn and adapt and enjoy. The second is it that again, the change is here, and we need to try and adapt to it so that we can make it easier for generations to come to adapt.

Adapting to change is a fact of life, and it is something I believe we as a society could do better at bring to our young who really need this skill in order to grow up in a time where new discoveries are being made technologically nearly every day.