A debate on……….Is Google making us stupid?

“One machine can do the work of fifty ordinary men;No machine can do the work of one extraordinary man.”

— Elbert Hubbard.

Is Google Making us Stupid?

This reminds of the eternal “calculators are evil” debate in school times. First it’s calculators, then PDAs, then laptops, and now it’s real-time access to information. As a college math tutor who never used calculators in any of his math classes, my experience has been that students who use calculators are much dumber in basic math skills than students who don’t use them. I think all classes except very advanced ones should get rid of calculators. They only provide a crutch that hinders students’ learning.

Ofcourse we call ourselves evolved from time to time. I dont argue with that and neither can you.  But take a step back, just think from my perspective. The concern is not heavily about the knowledge available or the contributors, but the effect it could have on our cognitive capabilities. The effect simply searching for an answer instead of thinking about it could have on us. Making our intelligence somewhat artificial. I dare you “Prove me if I am wrong !!!”

YES!! I am traumatized to see the present generations using Internet is an all-in-one stop for our human needs (after the basics). It’s a form of communication, entertainment and even education. But is it necessarily making us dumber? I don’t think so. We have access to knowledge like never before (not that I envy on current generations).  We learn about different cultures and religions by a click of a button. Breaking News can now be summarized in 140 characters (i mean reffering to tweets)


Pro Side

  • Universal Library
  • Information abundance
  • Information in finger tips and 24/7
  • Helped students/researchers
  • etc etc

Con Side

At the core of a study entitled google effects on memory: consequences of having information at our fingertips, a very simple, logical question is asked — why remember something if you know you can look it up again later? with google and other search engines, we’re essentially offloading some of our memory demands onto machines. with box office hits like limitless reminding us all just how little of our brains we access and use on a regular basis, this is movement in the wrong direction.

In a series of experiments, Columbia University psychologist Betsy Sparrow and her colleagues produced evidence that people are more likely to remember things they do not think they can find using a computer and vice versa. In addition, people are better at remembering where to look for information on the Internet than they are remembering the information itself, the studies found.

We can all shrug back saying it is not Google problem but dependent on the user using the Tool; you might argue that hammer can be used to nail or hit.

I am sure you have to spare a min of thought before you go ahead blindly saying “Google is smarter and Not me”

Source via Miui

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