Friday, November 1, 2013

Introduction to our external brains

I've heard people say that technology makes us forget things. Or, more accurately, that it keeps us from really learning and remembering things. With technology, we don't need to memorize information, so we keep it all there outside of our head and have to look everything up.

I fail to see why this is a bad thing.

This is on the mind because I'm currently realigning my life around Evernote, which they sell as being able to allow you to remember everything and some people have gone as far as to call their external brain. I have a weirdly selective memory at times, and that turns out to be not so good of a thing. I feel like being able to remember everything is something that could help me greatly.

Or maybe not remember. I don't keep all of this in my head - it would fall out before too long. Instead, I think that being able to access everything is what can help me. If I don't need to remember it and can just access it, what's the practical difference? What if, instead of spending a little bit trying to remember, I spend that little bit querying my phone? Either way, I get the information that I need.

This is a huge topic - I remember reading an article just barely touching on these effects, and it had something like eight pages to play around with the idea. I've only even started to talk about it, and I can just about guarantee you that I'm going to talk about this quite a bit more.

As a baiting teaser for what I have to say? We're already becoming cyborgs, why not see what we can do with it instead of trying to push back against it?