Mind Amplifier: Can Our Digital Tools Make Us Smarter?

By Howard Rheingold

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Instead of asking even if the net is making us silly, Howard Rheingold turns that query round and asks how designing and utilizing electronic media mindfully can make us smarter. What if people may perhaps construct instruments that leverage our skill to imagine, speak, and cooperate? people invented social studying, speech, writing, alphabets, printing, pcs, and the net, this means that we must always be systematically directing the evolution of highbrow augmentation.

Mind Amplifier: Can Our electronic instruments Make Us Smarter? examines the origins of electronic mind-extending instruments, after which lays out the rules for his or her destiny. Rheingold proposes an utilized, interdisciplinary technology of brain amplification. He additionally unveils a brand new protocol for constructing techno-cognitive-social applied sciences that embody empathy, mindfulness, and compassion — parts missing from latest electronic mind-tools.

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25 of eighty five 9/18/12 8:07 PM Web Viewer http://platform. atavist. com/view/tedbooks/story/163? unpublished New social periods (scribes who labored for clergymen who labored for emperors) have been proficient within the arts of interpreting and writing. using clay capsules to encode non-transactional details used to be a milestone in encoding wisdom. It was once additionally an extension of psychological capacities by utilizing exterior items to exhibit symbolic info. With writing comes examining, a compelled reprogramming of younger brains to acknowledge, extract and build that means from a small set of visible symbols. And with studying got here the 1st faculties, the place we reprogram the younger of our species by way of instructing them alphabets and grammars. studying expert Maryanne Wolf famous that people have been capable of utilize visible tokens by means of connecting visible areas of the mind to close by neural networks chargeable for higher-level actions like decoding meanings: Symbolization, for this reason, even for the tiny token, exploits and expands of an important gains of the human mind — our ability for specialization and our potential for making new connections between organization components. 18 ponder quite a few of the issues our brains need to do after we learn. we need to realize a visible development, decode the which means assigned to perceptible symbols, set up and deconstruct sequences of letters and phrases, and plan sentences. every one of those projects is comprehensive via varied mind areas and neural networks. As Calvin urged, might be speedy sequencing grew from ballistic calculation capabilities, or even, as Dehaene 26 of eighty five 9/18/12 8:07 PM Web Viewer http://platform. atavist. com/view/tedbooks/story/163? unpublished conjectured, “It is feasible that studying animal tracks is the cortical precursor for analyzing. If evolution has yielded physically specializations as sophisticated because the eagle’s eye or the leopard’s jump, it without doubt can regulate the predator’s visible mind. the serious selective strain imposed by way of hundreds of thousands of years of interplay among predators and prey could have ended in a cortical specialization for examining animal tracks. ”19 talking and analyzing use the mind. studying tips on how to converse and browse additionally swap the mind of the learner. simply because “nerves that fireside jointly, cord jointly” (aka Hebb’s Postulate), the rote evocation of organization among sounds, meanings and alphabetic symbols truly grooves yes neural networks, sure cognitive maneuvers, into scholars’ brains. 20 As Wolf placed it: it is going to appear most likely that the studying mind exploited older neuronal pathways initially designed not just for imaginative and prescient yet for connecting imaginative and prescient to conceptual and linguistic capabilities: for instance, connecting the fast attractiveness of a form with a fast inference that this footprint can sign hazard; connecting a famous device, predator, or enemy with the retrieval of a notice. 21 The people who invented literacy, Wolf argued, mixed our species’ means to make new connections among latest mind constructions, a capability to invoke accurately really expert neural networks inside our brains to acknowledge info styles, and a expertise to coach those mind 27 of eighty five 9/18/12 8:07 PM Web Viewer http://platform.

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