30 October 2014
Is Google Making Us Stupid?
Today, the Internet has become a big part of our lives. We rely deeply on it to obtain information, but it makes it harder for us to retain information. In “Is Google Making Us Stupid?” Nicholas Carr uses allusion, metaphor, and an appeal to logos in order to explain that the Internet is making society less smart and more reliant on technology.
Carr uses various allusions in order to give the reader a better understanding of technology today. He alluded to the movie called 2001: A Space Odyssey by referring to a supercomputer named HAL saying that its “mind is going” (225). Carr then began to say that he could also feel his mind going. He says that that he is “not thinking the way [he] used to think” because he can no longer easily read long articles or books (225). He explains that the reason for this change is the Internet. Information that used to take him “days” to obtain is now readily available to him (226). Society has become so reliant on technology to obtain their information, they no longer need to memorize or learn things because the information is a “few Google searches” away (226). Carr then tries to explain this opinion by adding an allusion to Maryanne Wolf’s Proust and the Squid: The Story and Science of the Reading Brain. Wolf explains that the reason humans no longer wish to take the time to read because we teach our minds to “translate symbolic characters we see into the language we understand” (228). She talks about how reading is not instinctive and more of a learned behavior. We want to do the easiest and least time-consuming thing possible when obtaining information. This causes us to simply skim pieces in order to just get the exact information we need instead of reading the whole passage. The more technology, the lazier society gets.
Carr also alludes towards the book Computer Power and Human Reason: From Judgment to Calculation by Joseph Weizenbaum. In the