Sanjiva Wijesinha -writer and physician

Short stories, Travel and Health Information

The Fount of All Knowledge

The Internet

The Internet

I am discovering why this 21st century is referred to as The Information Age.
Anybody who has a computer (or an iPad or even a mobile phone) and has access to the internet is able to almost instantaneously access information from innumerable sources all over the world. The internet has, in a sense, become the repository of all our knowledge.
If you want to drive somewhere, in the old days you would have to look at a map or a street directory and plot your route – and often have someone seated next to you with the directory or map open on their laps, telling you the driver where to turn (sometimes after you had passed the turnoff you were looking for). I can remember the book called ‘London A to Z’ which was so useful when we had to drive through the intricate maze of unplanned streets that make up England’s capital city. These days, hardly anyone uses street directories. GPS devices are almost standard fittings in new cars – and in any case, the younger generation just downloads maps and street directions on to their smart phones.
It seems to be such a long time ago that I used to spend a whole day in the library poring over huge tomes like the Index Medicus trying to locate research publications. Today anyone trying to look up information, from research students to journalists, does this at their own location on their own computer. With the flick of an eye and the click of a mouse, you can download publications from places as diverse as the Harvard Medical School Library https://www.countway.harvard.edu/index.html, the Central Library of the Archaeological Survey of India http://asi.nic.in/asi_ca_lib.asp and the Library of the Australian National University http://anulib.anu.edu.au/ in Canberra. You can look up cricket statistics at http://www.espncricinfo.com/ and find out on Wikipaedia (http://www.wikipedia.org/) all the finer details about the cardinals who have a chance of being elected Pope next month.
Read the rest of this article at Suite101.com

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This entry was posted on February 15, 2013 by in Uncategorized.
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