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Information Turbulence 2

Dec 22, 2019Accents, Articles, Canadian, English, Science&Tech, World News

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How much do you use social media? Is that too much?


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Andrew and José continue their conversation. The first part is at the URL below:

Andrew Robertson: We only have if- We only have time to process these messages if we sit down and take that time. And some of us do want to do that and most people don’t. And when I say, “most” it might be a small majority but it is- it’s a majority.

José Cruz: That’s a- that’s a- an interesting way of looking at it. Could we then argue like we were going to stretch your analogy a bit- (Yeah) that um, that chaotic phase transition occurs as a result of the lining of the pipe, or the, the- the slant of the pipe down the hill. (Hm) What we need to do is re-engineer that pipe so that then we can handle a much larger flow and not induce the phase transition, which is where education comes in. (Yeah yeah) The- we’re- we can’t ask it for less information. That’s not wise. Trying to throttle information. How are you going to do that? Who’s going to be the gatekeeper of the information? What we need to do is to be able to handle the information that’s coming in a better way.

Andrew: Yeah yeah. Yeah I mean I- I think there’s- Well there- you know there are all kinds of ways of doing it. And I- I the more I look at it, the more I see the analogy with water flowing in a pipe. So, you know smooth information is the idea that information can get to you nicely and easily and that’s not happening because of facebook, twitter, and google and their algorithms which mean that if you once click on a homeopathy link you’re going to get loads more hop- homeopathy links. And if you are not clicking on real medicine links, you’re going to stop seeing them. So that in- the real medicine links are not getting through to you, and the homeopathy links are amp- multiplying. And this is almost- this is kind of your rough pipe. This is what creates that, that turbulence in the first place. Where- (The- Please) whereas if people get off of social media, the more that they get off it- uh and I’m speaking as someone who uses facebook all the time, the more that people cut down on social media and stuff then the more they slow down that flow and the less turbulent their information flow will become.

José: Hmm (But um) Now that interesting. So you’re seeing social media as this pipe? The- the main pipe is social media?

Andrew: No, I think maybe it’s-

José: Or is social media…

Andrew: No, I think it, no…

José: Part of the bad engineering that makes the flow turbulent (Hm) in what would otherwise be a smooth flowing pipe? If that’s the analogy.

Andrew: Yeah I guess the the- the flow is all information media. So that’s not just social media but it’s also TV, newspapers, and conversation. All of that is the pipe. And it’s like- the social media is like putting these great big bumps and dents into the pipe, that have- Well they- it’s done two things: first of all because of social media we’ve got lots more information going through there- No, sorry. Because of the internet we’ve got way more information than we ever had before and social media is like the big bumps in the pipe that mess it all up and confuse it which, which means that anybody can now get posts about flat earth or anything, where they wouldn’t have- before they would never have heard about anything like that.


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Andrew Robertson


Southern England, Britain

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José Domingo Cruz


Vancouver, British Columbia


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