Any communicative medium allows us to deliver cognitive information into a shared space of consciousness, and ideally, to deliver much of our “known” reality to another mind. Media shape information, decide how it can be delivered, and, how we receive and interpret it. “Cognitive science has revealed a human brain notable for its plasticity. It is not unreasonable to speculate that the Internet not only shapes itself to the mind but shapes the mind to itself”, writes Ana Menéndez in this month’s Poets & Writers magazine.
What can we do to impede the erosion of some of our most prized social-intellectual habits of mind, rooted in organic brain structure and in social networking (from campfire to empire, parliament to newsprint, to Twitter and The Hot Spring Network), while taking advantage of the power of the web?