in praise of inconvenience

| 6 Comments

Boston Globe Online / Magazine, on Google and the ease with which it allows us to retrieve information on other people:

"It's the collapse of inconvenience," says Siva Vaidhyanathan, assistant professor of culture and communication at New York University. "It turns out inconvenience was a really important part of our lives, and we didn't realize it."

That's an interesting and important idea. If I weren't in a faculty meeting right now, I might be able to write more about it. Later, I guess.

6 Comments

Professor Lawley, I'm ashamed of you! You're in a faculty meeting right now and you're blogging? How often in class have you said that you *really* don't appreciate it when students are sending e-mails or instant messages while you are lecturing?

I'm sorry, but this was just too good to pass up. :-)

I had only just started reading that article when I posted the first comment, but I must say that it is very disturbing to say the least. I became curious when I finished and did a search on my name - Not surprisingly, the first 6 results are indeed related to me: a couple of pages containing game-related MIDI music that I had edited a few years back, my RIT 409 web site and believe it or not a couple of comments posted in this very blog. That's very cool, but at the same time it's very frightening in a way. I guess I should be thankful for not having skeletons in the closet or a shady past... But even then, as the article points out, you're still not safe if someone decides to post something damaging against you. All it could take is one little thing and sooner or later your entire life story is online.

Nice try, Carlo, but this quarter I'm *encouraging* my students to blog during class - http://www.it.rit.edu/~ell/mamamusings/archives/000084.html. :-) (Which is different from IMing or e-mailing. I'll plead the fifth on whether I was doing either of the latter during the meeting.)

Liz

Thanks for killing my one shot at making you eat your words and destroying my ego trip... Haha. ;-)

I stand corrected - you had made a point about this in the XML for the Web class in the beginning as well, I had simply forgetten.

The collapse of inconvenience - an interesting concept that we need to explore. Interesting...off to find more

Albert Borgmann has been pitching this as a pivotally important aspect of our cultural/technological moment. He uses the term “disburdenment,” pointing toward the ways our lives (and dependencies change) when certain gestures become radically easier, and others become radically more difficult. He’s ultra-smart, the kind of non-celeb tech thinker who matters for the long run more than the PR-machine heroes whose names we all recognize.

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