My wife and I are in the South Pacific. We are here without internet, without dvds and without TV. We are in a tiny island called Tikehau, a coral reef. We are not even in Tikehau proper, but in a smaller nearby island that has no cars and altogether around 80 people. So after we are done with the fish watching and canoeing, we both read. She reads 2000 page long Tolstoy´s War and Peace while I go for a more modest objective, Bill Bryson´s Short History of Nearly Everything, only 600 pages long. To me this is the reading equivalent of climbing the Aconcagua. I now do most of my reading in magazines and on the net and rarely tackle books that are not half as long as 600 pages!

Nevertheless, partly because of the lack of alternatives and mostly because I found this book fascinating, I did read. And I finished the whole book. And I strongly recommend it. I will not however review the book but write a series of random thoughts partly inspired by the book and partly by my own thinking over here in the South Pacific…

Text is the technology of the past. There has to be a better way to communicate an idea than grouping a bunch of letters and words next to each other. It occurred to me that maybe it’s possible to attack one side of the problem, either just the writing side or just the reading side.
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Watching TV makes you smarter, argues Steven Johnson in this article in the New York Time Magazine.
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