I'm afraid I've been a very slack blogger over the summer - a range of existing and emerging research projects, and various other have got in the way. More on many of these soon; for now, I wanted to point to the latest report released by the Pew Internet research centre, "The Future of the Internet IV". In this series of reports, Pew presents the responses of high-profile experts from industry and academia to a series of controversial questions about the future of the Net. To stimulate responses on each question, Pew offered two relatively extreme scenarios of what the future may look like.
There's coverage of the report in a number of leading technology and culture publications, including ReadWriteWeb and Fast Company. For the latest edition, I was asked to contribute my thoughts, and I'm happy for some of those responses to have made their way into the report itself. For completeness's sake (and perhaps to see in ten years' time how far off the mark I was), here are my answers in full:
Will Google make us smart or stupid?
By 2020, people's use of the internet has enhanced human intelligence; as people are allowed unprecedented access to more information, they become smarter and make better choices. Nicholas Carr was wrong: Google does not make us stupid (http://www.theatlantic.com/doc/200807/google).
By 2020, people's use of the internet has not enhanced human intelligence and it could even be lowering the IQs of most people who use it a lot. Nicholas Carr was right: Google makes us stupid.