Thamus inquired into the use of each of them, and as Theuth went through them expressed approval or disapproval, according as he judged Theuth’s claims to be well or ill founded. It would take too long to go through all that Thamus is reported to have said for and against each of Theuth’s inventions. But when it came to writing, Theuth declared, “Here is an accomplishment, my lord the King, which will improve both the wisdom and the memory of the Egyptians. I have discovered a sure receipt for memory and wisdom.” To this, Thamus replied, “Theuth, my paragon of inventors, the discoverer of an art is not the best judge of the good or harm which will accrue to those who practice it. So it is in this; you, who are the father of writing, have out of fondness for your off-spring attributed to it quite the opposite of its real function. Those who acquire it will cease to exercise their memory and become forgetful; they will rely on writing to bring things to their remembrance by external signs instead of by their own internal resources. What you have discovered is a receipt for recollection, not for memory. And as for wisdom, your pupils will have the reputation for it without the reality: they will receive a quantity of the information without proper instruction, and in consequence be thought very knowledgeable when they are for the most part quite ignorant. And because they are filled with the conceit of wisdom instead of real wisdom they will be burden to society.”
I chose this excerpt because I believe this is a good example of what Harris meant when describing Illustrating. The author is using scenes from another story to illustrate a point he wants to make. This can actually be found at the beginning of Postman’s essay
I enjoyed both writings and believe the authors got across what they wanted to, however I enjoyed ” Digital Natives, Digital Immigrants” better. I think Postman’s article was very shallow and lacked any real cognitive thinking. He more or less stated the obvious the entire piece. I believe most people could already tell you that new technologies change our culture and the people involved in them. Mark Prensky’s article went a little deeper and made me really think about how technology has alienated older generations who may not be used to it. It was a good read and his fine brush strokes hit closer to home than the broad strokes of Postman’s article. The way we learn in the digital age is very different from how it was in decades past.
I believe there is a happy medium in the fight between digital natives and digital immigrants. While growing up we tend to believe our current mindset is the best and we use that to make decisions but when we get older we usually find that our thoughts at the time were immature and incomplete. Any advice our parents or grandparents may have given us went through one ear and out the other. Once we reach the age we can actually appreciate that advice it is usually too late. We need to be able to mix the digital age of learning along with past proven methods of learning to reach our maximum potential. Some people may learn better through text and lectures while other people may be more hands on and visual. It seems to be that any advances in education with technology seem to be geared towards the student but I believe it should also incorporate those who teach. It’s tough for someone who is a digital immigrant to teach the digital natives. The digital immigrants are so often used to teaching in a certain style that they become set in their ways. Often they cannot move past their comfort zones to learn new methods of reaching students who aren’t set up to take information in the same way they were.
I didn’t find the writing to be difficult at all. The first one was a little rough to read and seemed to make the same point over and over while the second one was easier and more narrow. I really enjoyed how Presky was able to make me think and overall I believe that piece was much more important than the Postman article.