The continuing evolution of the digital age

Dennis Gosnell, Assignment Editor

Nearly five decades ago the world started to innovate industries with technological advances in leaps and bounds.  Today, technology changes at the speed of light.

In the new age of Internet and social media, most people are not so concerned about the physical realm in which they live.

What is the youth of today?

Henry Jenkins, director of the comparative media studies program at MIT, and his colleagues wrote, “According to a recent study from the Pew Internet & American Life project (Lenhardt & Madden, 2005), more than one-half of all teens have created media content, and roughly one third of teens who use the Internet have shared content they produced. In many cases, these teens are actively involved in what we are calling participatory cultures.”

According to Jenkins, a participatory culture is one in which members believe their contributions matter, and feel some degree of social connection with one another (at the least they care what other people think about what they have created).

Bring back the family atmosphere

So where in past generations people would sit down around a dinning room table to spend quality time together, this family time seems to be waning in the era of technology.  One survey (New York, NY — September 29, 2010 — In the 2010 Kids and Family Reading Report™) shows that reading is in a decline amongst children, due to the accessibility of technology and the decline of printed book accessibility.

But with digital books becoming increasingly popular, these numbers are likely to grow. “The study also found indications that technology could be a positive motivator to get kids reading — 57 percent of kids (age 9-17) say they are interested in reading an eBook, and a third of children age 9-17 say they would read more books for fun if they had access to eBooks on an electronic device.” – Media Room, Scholastic 

What will tomorrow’s unknown bring us?

With tomorrow ever on the horizon, and changes in technology happening every hour, it is unknown what the future of education, society, and life will hold.  It might be a good idea to start keeping hold of those books on the bookshelf because tomorrow they may be considered antiques.


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