Only the future will say what that means for books and reading. There has been a shift, from focus confined between two book covers, to fragmented impressions on the world's vast web of information - the Internet. The benefit of instant information-access through the internet is overwhelming, with endless rabbit holes of information and insight to expand the mind and change perspectives. Indeed, we inhabit both a large tangible world (Earth!) and a massive virtual world (the Internet).
I believe in the power of both worlds. The rabbit holes of endless information online can pull one's focus in scattered directions, yet can also be harnessed to engage and involve new people. However, it's where the tangible and virtual connect that the greatest impact can be made. While an extremist view may be to solely dedicate to the "old fashioned" way of learning through books and paper, without the screens, hyperlinks or newsfeeds - let's admit - that's a lot to give up for most.
Currently, we are approaching the other extreme and at an accelerating rate, adopting to new technologies and interacting more through virtual worlds than we do through our one real world we can touch and love - Planet Earth.
Here's one simple way to connect the two worlds:
Step 1) Virtual World - "Surviving Progress"
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Step 2) Real World - "Join the conversation"
Engage with the cause. Learn more through books. Follow your curiosity and drive. Share with others, putting unique minds together to think about real world issues.