In a recent article in The Guardian, there is a review of a new book – Nicholas Carr’s The Shadows - which examines the effect of the internet on various aspects of our lives. One of the key arguments of Carr, is that the internet – and mainly the web – may be altering the way our minds work and that our experience of using the web may be rewiring ’our brain’s circuits throughout our lives’. One of the key effects noted in the book, based on research, is that there is a tendency for more people to engage less in deep thinking because they are faced with so much temporary and superficial information on the web. Does this ring a bell with your students? We have to be careful, however, as those of us old enough to remember the world before the web existed, will recall that deep thinking was not always prevalent when students only read books. Interesting read and worth checking out.
There is always a fascination in watching flames in a real fire. The picture below was taken near the beach on the John Muir Country Park when Dunbar Running Club were hosting a post race barbeque last Thursday evening. The wood was driftwood collected on the beach. In a previous home, we had a woodstove which ran our central heating and had to be constantly fed with logs, which not only kept you fit in the cutting and stacking and carrying, but also gave a superb light show if you opened the stove doors. Watching flames on logs can be entrancing and it’s not recommended if you are holding a conversation with someone next to you, as you tend to stare at the flames and lose the thread.