Big Disconnect: The Story of Technology and Loneliness (2020)

Big Disconnect The Story of Technology and Loneliness Smart phones and social media sites may be contemporary fixations but using technology to replace face to face interactions is not a new cultural phenomenon Throughout our history intimacy with mach
  • Title: Big Disconnect: The Story of Technology and Loneliness
  • Author: Giles Slade
  • ISBN: 9781616145958
  • Page: 271
  • Format: Paperback
  • Smart phones and social media sites may be contemporary fixations, but using technology to replace face to face interactions is not a new cultural phenomenon Throughout our history, intimacy with machines has often supplanted mutual human connection This book reveals how consumer technologies changed from analgesic devices that soothed the loneliness of a newly urban genSmart phones and social media sites may be contemporary fixations, but using technology to replace face to face interactions is not a new cultural phenomenon Throughout our history, intimacy with machines has often supplanted mutual human connection This book reveals how consumer technologies changed from analgesic devices that soothed the loneliness of a newly urban generation to prosthetic interfaces that act as substitutes for companionship in modern America The history of this transformation helps explain why we use technology to mediate our connections with other human beings instead of seeking out face to face contact Do electronic interfaces receive most of our attention to the detriment of real interpersonal communication Why do sixty million Americans report that isolation and loneliness are major sources of unhappiness The author provides many insights into our increasingly artificial relationships and a vision for how we can rediscover genuine community and human empathy.
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      Giles Slade

    One Reply to “Big Disconnect: The Story of Technology and Loneliness”

    1. This is one of the best books I ve read in a while It is a penetrating analysis of the pitfalls of modernity I would not be alive right now except for the fact that I live in a modern industrial society I am grateful to be born at the time I was The idea of living before in a time before air conditioning horrifies me While the basis of plenty fossil fuels is almost certainly unsustainable I am not looking forward to a simpler time before electricity I would find living in premodern or postapocal [...]

    2. people on their iphones usually look tense and self absorbed the tech that is supposed to bring the world closer together often keeps people further apart there are two books out now called the big disconnect and both are on the same subject i got both and will read the other book by steiner adair later what did i learn from this book by Giles Slade it clearly laid out the concept that business realized, after the development of the assembly line, that if EVERYONE had their OWN car gadget gismo [...]

    3. Slade is often successful in making the case that our progressive reliance on technology for companionship is part of a prolonged and increasing disconnection from nature, which includes disconnection from our own humanity A better book on the same subject is Sherry Turkle s Alone Together.

    4. I didn t dislike this book but it was awfully dry, though I m not sure what else I expected I mostly agree with the author s central thesis along the lines of we are using technology too much and it s probably not a good thing and I appreciate that he looks at it from a historical multi generational point of view As a Millennial, I enjoy learning about how EVERY generation has happily adopted technologies that isolate them from the world around them because older generations tend to think we are [...]

    5. Confession I read this book on the subway Yes, I engaged in that most solitary of activities, reading, in order not to be bothered on my commute Missing out on the simple satisfaction of well stocked bookshelves , in deference to the author, I also returned the book to the library, after self checking it out with little diminution in pleasure I couldn t ascribe to the content Every few years, technophobe fulminations grace the market arguments not too different in form Neil Postman s portents an [...]

    6. As a 27 year old, living in downtown Chicago, with an IT job, and is fairly reliant on a constant stream of news from computerswell let s just say a lot was very riveting to me.One of the strengths of the book is explaining how the technology we use fulfills basic functions our radical need for connection, warmth, friendship The counter is how the increased trust we have on technology has weakened our connection to others, and general mindreading.The totemic Wilson the volleyball, the 1920s Japa [...]

    7. I really enjoyed this book Although a bunch of the perspectives of the author are debatable, I see how society has changed to become less social in some aspects However, at the same time, technology has also allowed us to become connected, when being connected before was extremely difficult, which the author does not really touch upon Convenience and independence requires us to cut out the middle man, which, in most cases, are the human interactions Everything from eCommerce to headphones to ca [...]

    8. Some interesting concepts here but what was really disconnected was the organization of the book It veered and jerked wildly from discussions of the closed automobile, recorded music, the link between bipedalism and humanity s innate love of singing, and the reliability of firearms in wartime I get the overarching theme that the urbanization of society has driven us to seek solitude to block out the masses, and in turn seek digital companionship as as poor replacement for actual people but I tho [...]

    9. I stopped reading when I hit this delightful passage In this way, as technology slowly replaced intrapersonal interactions, agoraphobia and isolation wandered hand in hand into modern life like Hansel and Gretel innocently making their way into the depths of the forest toward the witch s house This should be nominated for one of those Bad Writing contests where they choose examples of Worst Mixed Metaphor This metaphor broke the mixer completely Even the engineers at Blendtec wouldn t try to fee [...]

    10. I ve been on a kick reading books about technology and its effect on society lately, and this is the latest I ve read in that vein Slade describes how technology has evolved to increasingly isolate us from each other at first a necessity in our urban environment, where we can t possibly interact with everyone we meet, but now, perhaps, a surrogate for human contact Some excellent ideas in this book, but it s somewhat hampered by poor editing and some spots where hard data would have helped.

    11. Lots of books have come out recently on technology and how it s changing us, many of them focusing on computers and or social networks This book is unique in that it utilizes a larger perspective looking back at other technologies such as radio, movies, and even music to make a deeper critique Unfortunately, the subject matter covered is a bit too broad and or the author isn t quite able to pull it together and it doesn t come off as well as it could have.

    12. Here s the author s thesis it s the Kindle s fault that people talk to each other less and are ruder when they do No, it s s fault even before the Kindle No, it s the Internet s fault He thinks that since we buy stuff online now, and have fewer daily interactions saying thank you and have a nice day with store clerks, we are lonelier and losing the ability to converse.Um, no.

    13. Excellent read Full of strange facts and lot of material on thingsI had no idea have a back story Why front porches on houses are disappering,work songs demise or how listening to music alone wasconsidered a selfish pursuit Unintended consequences of the technology and how we live our lives Look forward to future books.It can be a slow read as it makes you think from page to page.

    14. Had some great history and concepts about technology and isolation, but the book just isn t my cup of tea Slade certainly has some good points to consider as to how and why we have come to this point, but didn t leave me feeling much different than when I began reading it which is to say I should turn off this damn computer and go camping in the mountains for a week with a copy of Walden.

    15. Interesting book on technology Other subjects thrown in there, too, but I would definitely recommend this one, overall How we are affected by technology

    16. This book presents some very interesting facts and history of technology However, I felt like his point was often lost, and it was a fight to get through Read like a blog than a book.

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