Taken from the Too Big to Know Prologue
“The Internet is an unedited mash of rumor, gossips, and lies. It splinters our attention and spells the end of reflective, long-form thought. Our children don’t read any more. They certainly don’t read newspapers. Everyone with any stupid idea has a megephone as big as that of educated, trained people”
This quote from the prologue is saying that the internet is dumbing us down. Since anyone can can post something on the internet there are tons of information out there. The information tends be filled mostly of rumors and lies, it is very opinionated. I think the author is also saying that the caliber of writing is so simple that it doesn’t challenge the human mind to think. It’s either you take the authors opinion or you don’t. there isn’t much room for reasoning.
In too big to know the author states ”that knowledge is the property of the network”. I believe what he is saying that the way knowledge is being provided is different from what it used to be. Knowledge know in inseparable from the network. Before knowledge used to be provided from Encyclopedias but now its provided through online encyclopedias like Wikipedia. Meanwhile old encyclopedias like Britannica are becoming extinct
“Who write contrasts the solid traces we used to leave behind with the digital dust we currently leave in our wake: more of it for sure, but also more likely to be blown away by a hard-drive failure or a change from floppies to cds to dvds to blu-Rays to whatever comes next and next after that.”
This quote also taken from Too Big to Know, here the author is saying that we are losing our human traces for things that are digital. This is true, the Constitution was has handwritten and we still have it today and it has value. If it was typed back them we would have a Microsoft “.doc” file of it. This is good and bad because digital files allow you to back up things in case it is lost or stolen. More importantly he is saying that things are constantly changing and we as humans constantly adapt to the next new thing.
TECHNICAL WRITING 101
Here are two quotes from the passage
You should be comfortable with and have some basic knowledge about the technology you’ll be documenting.
Your initial lack of knowledge, however, works for you. As you learn to use the new hardware or software, you encounter many of the same issues that the users (people who buy the product) will face as they started.
These two quotes tackle two different views on technical writing. The first is saying that when technical writing about technology you should have knowledge about what you will be reporting. The second one opposes that thought and says that if you are technical writing for technology you should be clueless, because as you learn you may encounter the same problems as your potential readers thus creating a better read with easier understanding. I feel this is true because for me it is easier to explain something to someone that I recently just learned than something I knew for a long time.
A technical writer is really a translator. You start with a complicated piece of technology, and your mission is to explain to a nonexpert how to use that technology.
This is quote the author uses a simile to correlate a technical writer to a translator. A translator is one who knows two languages well to be able to convert it to another. I think a technical writer is more like an interpreter who takes a complex language and turns it into something more simple