For our most recent source of knoledge on how technology is changing the way we think, read and write, we examined a book called “A Better Pencil.” The book was written by Dennis Baron who is the Professor of English and Linguistics at the University of Illinois, showing that he is, in fact, a credible source. Baron starts the book by explaining how writing transformed into something that was more authoritative and authentic from something that was once considered a novelty. People began trusting the written word more and more after writing became popular instead of relying on speech like they had previously been used to. According to writings by Plato and Socrates, writing was something that should not be used because it weakened the memory. Baron uses this example to show how new technologies can have harmful effects. Even today there are people who are very skeptical of technology and of how messages are delivered so easily through technology. Baron then goes into how technology has been changing the way that people write ever since writing began. He uses the example of how some anti-technology people still insist on using the still popular pencil or some romantic people still prefer to use quills. A familiar argument of the class that Baron brings up is how computers have made writing too easy. Much like in Carr’s article, “Is Google Making Us Stupid?” Baron talks about how computers take a lot of the hard parts of writing like spelling correctly and makes them easy which, in turn, makes the quality of our writing decline. Another familiar argument is the one on how information can be found on the internet that isn’t necessarily true. Information on sites like Wikipedia can be editted by anyone which can cause information to be invalid. By examining Baron’s book, it seems to me that Baron would likely side with Carr.

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