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Wednesday, February 04, 2009

Technology is still all a blur

It's the fifth anniversary of the launch of Facebook. Isn't it also the 30th birthday of the Mac? How these things can go from obscurity to ubiquity that quickly has gone from breathtaking to commonplace. These things spread so fast that very soon you can't remember what life was like before they came along. At the same time you can't remember when they came along. I feel we need a new vocabulary to describe the effect such phenomena have on our memory.

My past life is marked out by academic years, the stages of the career of the Beatles, the arrival of punk rock, the ages of my children and the launches of magazines. I don't have a mental timeline that I can consult for the arrival of the mobile phone, the desktop computer, the internet or Facebook. As the snail said after he was mugged by the tortoise, "It all happened so fast."