Sunday, December 09, 2007

The information age....I am often thinking of it as the lack of information age I am sure you are asking why???

In this day and age we have such amazing technologies at our command. We have a varied amount of inventions and conveniences that makes our lives so easy and enjoyable. The life that we lived as recently as 50 years ago is as different and foreign from today as 100 years ago.
Today we have all the devices that makes our work and communication so easy and very accessible. Now that is nice. But let's look at this in a more historic bent, or as you will, how the future will see us.
There is something that we do that none of our forbears did or had at their command. That is ....

1. The Internet
2. text messaging
3. E-mail
4. Blogs

These are 4 very important parts of our lives today. 75% of the world is using this now. I have conversations with people from all over the world via the Internet. The world has become much smaller due to these wonderful developments. But let's look at the down side to some of these wonderful developments.

When we study the history of people and their lives we go through their diaries or letters. For in these books and letters they have usually left us a very detailed account of their lives and their friends and contacts.
That was the norm since the end of the dark ages. Every great person and quite often most of the common man who could write kept a diary, and wrote letters.
Today we send text messages and emails. We have blogs like you are reading here now. But are any of these systems permanent? No they are not.

90% of our lives and world are wrapped in the electronic world. We do not make a habit of writing letters anymore, and we send text messages to each other. We rarely keep an extensive diary.
Therefore, 150 years from now what will the people of that time know of us? Of course there will be detailed histories of the time. But there will be a great void in the life's of the common man. To me that is really frightening.
For you should remember that CD's do not last, The hard drive on your computer will not last, your blog will be around for a while, but will it be around 100 years from now?
I would seriously doubt it.

So much of our lives are preserved on systems that are not permanent . Old letters and diaries have been around for centuries. But text messages and email? No they will not be here.

I found it rather interesting the other day when I found that most politicians today do not keep detailed diaries like the politicians of the past. If something is not recorded, it cannot be used again you I guess is the logic behind that.
But there is indeed a great loss by that mentality. I enjoy reading the diaries of people of the past. You can get to understand their world and time. Many people kept diaries for decades.
I remember as a boy reading my grandfathers diaries. I enjoyed them so. Sadly my grandmother threw them out.
But I have always kept diaries. I have found diaries of others from the past and studied them.
I have personally written 26 books of diaries so far. I would hope that there will be 50 or so by the time I assume room temperature.
I have talked to a number of people who do keep diaries, but they are a very small grouping.
I fear it is growing smaller as the years pass and the art of handwriting has started to vanish. Many today say why learn to write in longhand cursive. If we start to allow that art to be lost in our halls of higher learning, it is pretty much the swan song for us in many areas.
One has only to look at the Ancient Egyptian hieroglyphics to see a style of writing that was allowed to die. Today we know quite a bit about that civilisation. But we knew very little till the late 18th century and could finally read it in the early 19th.

Through a moment of chance by a discovery by Napoleon's army which was in Egypt at the end of the 18th century and discovered the Rosetta Stone. This stone was made just when the art of Egyptian Hieroglyphs was being phased out. The rock had the same message on it in three different writing styles.
This was the piece that would allow a young Frenchman Jean-Fran├žois Champollion to finally decipher the text and learn the secret of the Hieroglyphs.

It was a style of writing allowed to die. One last sadness is that we do not know what the language of the Egyptians sounded like. The loss of that style of writing and many others is a cruel action in the eyes of history. Lets keep cursive writing very much alive in our lives and in schools.

So my challenge to you is to start keeping a diary and marking down events of your life, and the events of the world. It will be a priceless artifact to the future. Because few know it, or see it. But if you look at it carefully you will see the much of our time will be lost in the """"Lack of information age"""""

Don't be one of its victims.