Ignorance and Wonderment

Remember when it was possible to not know something? A time not so long ago when over dinner, someone would ask a question or try and recall a fact and the entire table would discuss what their memory of the topic was and perhaps even a debate about who knew what would ensue.  A time not so long ago that when everyone had shared their thoughts, the conversation would progress without a definitive conclusion and later, on the way home, "I was actually right" statements would be made and the conversation might progress again and new opinions might surface. But, now with Google in our pocket, these conversations are much shorter. The debates don't carry on, an answer can be presented and factually laid out by the fastest search engine connoisseur.  Facts can be known in the blink of an eye, no one has to remember anything, and unstructured conversations last only moments longer than they statement, "someone google it."

What kind of toll is that having on our ability to think outside of the box and beyond what is "known?" On the older end of the millennial generation, I still remember life before I got my first cell phone (2002) and Facebook (2004).  I remember a time not too long ago when I used to be able to have a clever thought and not worry about whether it took more than 140 characters to say. In fact, this blog post it self only is now 243 words long because I couldn't figure out how to say this thought in one tweet.

But what about kids that are in elementary school now that learned to type their names before they learned to write them? What about a generation whose attention span is now too short for Facebook but prefers images that disappear after 10 seconds?

In a world that moves this quickly and where not knowing isn't a viable answer to a question, where does wonderment and naivety fit? Are we always to know everything and react accordingly? If we have an idea and think there is room to develop it into something bigger, are we brave enough to do so without checking to see if someone else already had the idea or bought the domain?

Pendulums swing even as the world moves forward. The question I am now asking myself is where does it swing back to from here.