On Sat, 25 Mar 2006, steven c wrote:
> First...at the present time, only a very small percentage of the population
> of North America have, or have access to:
> 1) A home computer (reasonably up-to-date)
> 2) An adequate Internet connection to allow access to/download of
> files of anything larger than tens of kilobytes
> 3) Adequate computer literacy to use the Internet for anything past
> exchanging a few e-mails or ordinary word processing
While I can't speak to point three, I guess it depends on what you read...
Johnnie L. Roberts, "Keepin' It On the Download", Newsweek, August 1,
2005, p. 42
"As of December, more than half of U.S. homes were wired with the
high-speed pipeline to the Net. Online audiences are surging (5
million-strong for AOL's Live 8 concert coverage)."
Brad Stone, "Hi-Tech's New Day",
Newsweek, April 11, 2005, p. 62
"75 percent of Americans use the Internet and spend an average three hours
a day online."
Malcolm Jones, "Waiting for the Movie", Newsweek, July 19, 2004, p. 58
"Using Census Bureau data, the NEA [National Endowment of the Arts] found
that the number of Americans who say they've even opened a single book of
fiction...has declined by 10 percent, from 56.9 percent in 1982 to 46.7
percent today...Two decades ago the number of new books published annually
hoevered around 60,000, then climbed more than 100,000 in the early '90s.
Last year saw a record 164,609 new titles."
Humm...something seems wrong with that equation...
Louise Kehoe, "Drowning in a Deluge of Data," Financial Times, p. 8, June
"About 24 exabytes of unique information has been produced by the human
race, according to a two-year-old study from the School of Information
Management and Systems at the University of California, Berkeley, while
study leader Hal Varian has noted the possibility of an acceleration of
data growth in a recent update."
Ok, so how many holographic CD will it take for me to have all of that at
"More Kids Say Internet Is the Medium They Cant Live Without,"
StatisticalResearch.com, April 5, 2002 (thanks to Dick Halpern)
"Given a choice of six media, one-third (33%) of children aged 8 to 17
told KN/SRI that the Web would be the medium they would want to have if
they couldnt have any others. Television was picked by 26% of kids;
telephone by 21%; and radio by 15%. For the top three media, results were
dramatically different among girls and boys. Twice as many boys (34%
versus 17%) chose TV as their must-have medium, while telephone was more
than twice as popular (31% versus 12%) among girls. The Internet placed
first with 38% of boys and 28% of girls."
Out of the moulths of babes.
Robert J. Samuelson, "Debunking the Digital Divide," Newsweek, March 25,
2002, p. 37
"In 1997 only 37 percent of people in families with incomes from $15,000
to $24,999 used computers at home or at work. By September 2001, that
proportion was 47 percent. Over the same period, usage among families
with incomes exceeding $75,000 rose more modestly, from 81 percent to 88
percent. Among all racial and ethnic groups, computer use is rising.
Here are the numbers for 2001 compared with similar rates for 1997:
Asian-Americans, 71 percent (58 percent in 1997); whites, 70 percent (58
percent); blacks, 56 percent (44 percent); Hispanics, 49 percent (38
> Imagine the internet with virtually every bit of the currently-
> published information accessible through a near-infinite number
> of websites...and now imagine trying to find one specific piece
> of that information!
I agree, navigation is a problem. However I found all of the quotes above
in about 45 seconds. On the other hand...are we going to have the
I am not suggesting I am an information superman...nor am I suggesting the
internet has it all, also, I don't know it these quotes are accurate. But
I do know it took me less time than using the library...books.
> the information I need. Not only that, finding those books
> means I will find others shelved in their vicinity which may
> be the ones I am looking for.
On the other hand, Amazon will give me a personalize list of suggested
titles...something my librarian used to, but hasn't done in over 30 years.
I loved libraries and am saddened to see what has happened to them.