The Shallows (2010, W. W. Norton & Company) 3 stars

"Is Google making us stupid?" When Nicholas Carr posed that question, in a celebrated Atlantic …

Review of 'The Shallows' on 'Goodreads'

2 stars

Read first 100 pages, then got distracted by short attention span and went to look at cute kittens.. No, that's not right.

Read first 150 pages, decided not to stay up all night to read the rest, since I had to leave the book behind in the morning due to it being made of dead tree matter and on loan from the library (and borrowed besides). Had little trouble concentrating on the narrative flow despite nearly 20 years of heavy internet use. Did think author was being a bit disjointed and pompous.

I suspect a large oversimplification lurks within this book. It starts with a discussion of the medium being the message. While the message of the web is certainly that it encompasses "everything", and that clicking the next link to the next thing is often more important than carefully reading a page's content, the web is not the only computer mediated medium.

Whole industries are forming to provide concentration devices like the kindle, whose entire purpose (besides proprietary lockin, profits, and power) is to allow people to avoid computer use habits that prevent concentrating on and becoming lost in the narrative flow of a book. A book on an e-book reader is not the same medium as the web.