back to article Google boss worries about the future of reading

Google boss Eric Schmidt is worried that kids will lose the skill of reading for comprehension and deep understanding as they increasingly use devices rather than actual books. Schmidt, speaking at the World Economic Forum in Davos, said: "The one that I do worry about is the question of 'deep reading'. As the world looks to …

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Headmaster

Reading

I've been to Reading, we should be worried.

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Anonymous Coward

The future of Reading

it's gonna be fine. They're doing a big redevelopment of the station and that end of town.

...and we're going to have the best stadium of any team in the second divison.

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Boffin

Why worry?

Google's reading everything for us anyhow.

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Reading?

And there I was thinking that the big boss cared about the town in southern England... perhaps not - he wouldn't be the first.

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Thumb Up

Could be right...

He could have a point, although I don't know what he was actually talking about, since I lost interest after the first sentence! ;-)

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They said the same about comicbooks

...we seem to have survived. They said it about television as well.

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Coat

Kind of funny

that Schmidt should say this, given what teh Steve was recently reported to have said about Google. I mean, it's almost a subtle endorsement of the iPad, which is an "instantaneous device" that is also dedicated to reading...

Mine's the one with the iPad in the pocket, loaded with all those works that Google scanned.

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It might help

If he didnt make up a nonsense word for the name of his company!

"Daddy, what's a google?"

"Sounds like the sort of word a complete n*bhead would make up."

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FAIL

Fail

You obviously missed the bit where "Google" is based on a real word....

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FAIL

It based on a real word...

...but it's still made up by n*bheads.

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FAIL

I haven't....

It was supposed to be Googol, but as we know they spelt it wrong.

So it is ironic they are worried about reading when they are so poor at spelling.

"based" on a real word, just like the word TWUNT, which is "based" on two words!

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Kids can't read?

That'll be why he's collecting all the books in a nice neat pile, then...

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I wanted to leave an informed, intelligent comment...

...but I didn't read the article deeply enough.

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I don't understand

I am a bit confused about what he means - reading is reading, regardless of whether the words you read are displayed on an LCD screen, printed on paper, engraved in stone etc.

I read one electronic book long time ago. I was using a Psion5 and it was a pain in the eyes but I

enjoyed the contents of the book just as much as if it was a normal, printed one.

I read Samizdat "books" which were typed manually with a typewriter and photocopied for distribution and there again I did not notice any reduction in comprehension levels.

So, what really is his point?

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Gav
Unhappy

Reading's hard and hurts my brain!

People are lazy and don't read. No news there. You can see the result of this on Youtube, where people will happily spend 10mins listening to some random nobody talk at a webcam, but would never dream of reading the same waffle on random nobody's blog.

Anyways, I had a really good analysis of this story. But no-one would bother reading it because it was more than a paragraph long and didn't end in a joke.

Icon, because a pretty picture is easier than reading a categorised summary.

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WTF?

Of f**k off!

I am more worried about a world my kids will grow up in dominated by a company so overbearing that they will soon own the "common" internet and have enough power to build their own private internet!

This bullshit from a bloke who trotted out the tired old mantra, "If you have nothing to hide, you have nothing to fear from Google."

I encourage my kids to learn to read, but more importantly I encourage them to think for themselves. Reading is a skill it can be learned as required. Thinking individual thoughts has to be developed from an early age, very hard to develop later on in life when you're more set in your ways or brain-washed by corps like GOOGLE!!!

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Anonymous Coward

Reading

I grew up in Reading in the 70's. And if you want to know what Reading was like in the 70's, go there now.

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Anonymous Coward

Way back when

there were studies that showed comprehension suffered when material was read from a crt.

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Anonymous Coward

manipulation & learning

"...when reading [a book], you should not be the master [as you are when reading digitally]...surrendering to the organizing logic of a book is, after all, the way one learns."

David A. Bell, Historian and Professor at Johns Hopkins University cited by Christine Rosen, "People of the Screen"

http://www.thenewatlantis.com/docLib/20081020_TNA22Rosen.pdf

and some other thoughts along these lines here:

http://sites.google.com/site/maar258/thoughts-on-text-image

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FAIL

Google should fix their typos

Have you ever read any of Google's scanned books? They are so littered with typos, that if any one attempted to do the reading he laments they aren't doing, they'd stop because they're tired of typos. Take a look at the Federalist Papers that Google provides, or you can get them from Project Gutenberg which offers a proofed copy.

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WTF?

WHAT?

Did I miss something or was the last sentence of that article waaaay out in left field?

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Unhappy

"I've been to Reading"

I bet you found them to be ... a load of Berks.

No wonder he's worried.

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Prof. Bell

I read Professor Bell's article (cited above) until he started to rhapsodise about "forgotten treasures tucked amid the pages". University staff have to justify their comfortable positions. Reading a PDF is not so very different from reading a book, in my experience. Books have survived the onslaught of television and they will continue alongside the various types of ireader. Maybe this is not always a good thing: I'm not sure that time wasted on CSI New York (or Silent Witness) is better spent on the works, for example, of Stieg Larsson. (I once visited Reading Reading Centre.)

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WTF?

Re Prof Bell

Does anyone seriously believe that reading a .pdf printed on paper is so much better for your brain than reading the same .pdf on a screen?

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Anonymous Coward

who said dat? bell rosen schmidt

Except that wasn't Prof Bell "rhapsodising" about "forgotten treasures tucked amid the pages". And maybe your comment exemplifies exactly what Prof Schmidt is referring to.

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