The debate over media affecting intelligence has been around even before Socrates theorized that the evolution of written text would make people forgetful and unwise. Our increasing use and immersion in digital media makes us stupid and intelligent at the same time. In this paper I will outline how digital media is making us dumb but ultimately smarter, how we use technology as an extension of ourselves, and where digital media will take us in the future striving to become more intelligent.
During the time of great Greek philosophers, Socrates once debated that the invention of written text would make people forgetful and unwise. He believed that people would lose for example the ability to recite intricate poems and lose the ability to draw upon memorized knowledge to be truly wise. While the fact that we lost some ability to memorize was true it did allowed for a greater range of knowledge that could grow. This range of knowledge came in the form of books, newspapers, and many forms of written text that anyone could draw knowledge from without memorization.
Today that range of knowledge has evolved into a diverse use of digital media. One of the most important has come from the invention of the World Wide Web or internet. Given the free and open nature of the internet we are presented with knowledge in ways that has never been seen before. Like Socrates concern about the evolution of written text, people were concerned that with the internet we would lose the ability to articulately read written text, decrease spelling proficiency, and we would lose real connections to the world around us. In fact this is not true. We utilize this information and tap into it in many different ways. We can Google anything from a simple question to searching scholarly journals. The way we are obtaining this information is ever evolving too. Recently the introduction of high speed smart phones and tablets are allowing us to...