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Net neutrality:
Now it’s official

Posted by on June 12, 2018 at 7:41 pm

The FCC repeal of 2015 net neutrality regulations took effect yesterday, so this seemed like a good time to share the following, originally posted here on January 3, 2018. • • • It all started in 2008, when the people at Comcast noticed a curious thing. File-transfer giant BitTorrent was consuming more and more Internet bandwidth. More, it [...]

Effects of digital media

Posted by on June 11, 2018 at 3:42 pm

I approach this topic with some reluctance. In no way do I wish even to appear to side with doomsayers who in every technological advance see the end of humankind. Not enough can be said about the wealth of important advances that digital technology has brought to modern life, from the convenient to the lifesaving. Besides, [...]

Don’t be downcast
about podcasts

Posted by on May 31, 2018 at 2:41 pm

EVERY TIME a new communication technology emerges, people lose no time predicting the demise of an existing one.  The printing press was going to ruin the human mind. Motion pictures, radio, and TV were all going to eliminate reading. TV and, later, streaming were going to do in movie theaters. Digital media threatens the death [...]

Luddites,
reverse-Luddites,
and value

Posted by on May 25, 2018 at 1:39 pm

“Luddite” sounds like an indestructible substance over which wars are fought in the Marvel Universe.  The word originally referred to workers in early 19th century Nottinghamshire, England, who protested low wages and poor working conditions by destroying their employers’ machines. Today, Luddite has morphed into a reference to people who oppose technological advances. Contemporary Luddite-type voices arise with [...]

Google’s Duplex et al:
Wow or Yikes?

Posted by on May 15, 2018 at 7:05 pm

I have empathy for writers of futuristic science fiction. It’s almost impossible to correctly envision the future. You may have noticed, for instance, that 2001 came and went without the discovery of an obelisk on the moon. But last week, Google’s I/O Conference apparently conjured up visions of 2001: A Space Odyssey’s rogue robot Hal for a few [...]