Sunday, May 22, 2011

Predicting the Future with Marshall McLuhan

I just finished reading The Medium is the Massage. An Inventory of Effects by Marshall McLuhan and Quentin Fiore. Published in 1967, it is a prescient work, predicting with amazing accuracy the effects of technology on our lives. Here are a few quotes from the book that particularly struck me:

What does it mean that we have been saying these things for 43 years?

"Our 'Age of Anxiety' is in great part the result of trying to do today's job with yesterday's tools - with yesterday's concepts"

"Character no longer is shaped by only two earnest, fumbling experts. Now all the world's a sage."

"Ours is a brand-new world of allatonceness. 'Time' has ceased, 'space' has vanished. We now live in a global village... a simultaneous happening."

"The circuited city of the future will not be the huge hunk of concentrated real estate created by the railway. It will take on a totally new meaning under conditions of very rapid movement. It will be an information megalopolis."

"In the name of 'progress,' our official culture is striving to force the new media to do the work of the old."

"Education must shift from instruction, from imposing of stencils, to discovery - to probing and exploration and to the recognition of the language of forms."
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