As we think ahead to our next community conversations that will be held at the Des Plaines Public Library, we thought that we should share a few key points about the debates around information and technology. In particular, the question, "Why are we drowning in information?", is a very complicated one. Here are some of the aspects of the problem:
- Information overload – Although the Internet and its search engines present extensive amounts of information, the information’s quality and credibility must be continuously evaluated.
- Communications => Connectivity – Individuals, governments, and firms are adapting to changing work patterns, changes in the formation of relationships and communities, and geography is no longer a primary constraint.
- Increasing Scrutiny – The availability of information makes it possible for citizens to demand inclusion in decision making and to elevate societal suspicion.
- More Government Activity, less Service – Governments use technology to replace personal services providing minimal services while enhancing other services.
- Shift to knowledge-intensive systems – Citizens must extract meaningful knowledge from volumes of data and information while quality sources are locked behind subscription fees with no integration.
- Real-time Access to Information – How to access all real-time information used by family, friends, peers, and associates in their daily life without a gatekeeper. Is there an invisible hand of the Internet?
- Who is Winning: Citizens or Advertisers? – Is the Internet teaching us to be better consumers or critical thinkers? Does it entertain us more than inform and educate us? Should the value of a site be measured by the sales it generates?"Privacy is dead – get over it" - . A number of experts within the field of Internet security and privacy believe that privacy doesn't exist. Companies are hired not only to watch what you visit online, but to infiltrate the information and send advertising based on your browsing history.
What do you think? Do you find yourself dealing with more information before? Have new tools and technology made is easier or harder to cope?