The Risks of Too Much Information

Encouraging the dilettantes is one unfortunate side effect of the information age.
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Question: Is there a danger?


Jason Kottke:  I don’t know if it’s a danger exactly, but there’s a tendency . . .  I have a tendency, I feel, to be a bit dilettantish about things.  You sort of skim the surface of things and feel like you have an understanding of them when perhaps you don’t.  You know people always say Wikipedia is kind of the big downer in this regard.  You know people go to Wikipedia and they read things, and well, they might or might not be accurate.  And you’re getting sort of this encyclopedia entry style understanding of things – which you don’t really understand the career of, you know, whoever . . . you know of a famous musician, or a playwright, or who knows who.  You know I don’t think you get a very nuanced picture of what they’re all about from reading Wikipedia, or from me describing a link about them to you in two sentences.  So I think there’s a tendency toward that sort of thing online.


Recorded on: 10/9/07