- Gavan Reilly - https://gavreilly.com -

On Technology

There’s something magical about the internet that sets it apart from other media – that no matter where one might be using it, or what the circumstances of the user, the internet always looks the same. Going to gavreilly.com in Ireland or California (hi Cat!) or Munich is no different*. The page, content, feel, navigability of a site is perfectly uniform for everyone, everywhere in the world – and to me, that’s a far more special attribute than the universality of TV or radio. In fact, I’d predict that once the world develops sufficiently to the point that everyone has access to a phone line, and once laptops become cheap enough for them to be bought on a wholescale international basis, we’ll see an enormous schism in media as we know it.

Just a brief thought to bear in mind. Next time you’re watching an international spoting event, or perhaps Obama’s Inauguration next Tuesday, have a think about the incredible ability of human kind to manufacture systems where a single microphone placed at a human mouth, and a single camera pointed at a human face, can be manipulated, formatted, resolved, condensed and transmitted, and broadcast to someone on the other side of the world with a portable television, with such speed as to make the whole process seem instantaneous. This is the miracle of human endeavour: the fact that Obama will speak into one microphone, or twenty-two footballers will take to a single patch of grass, and have that activity transmitted worldwide (I mean literally worldwide; I don’t mean this word lightly, or in a figurative sense) at the speed of light and at the blink of an eye, is a product of extraordinary human agility and magnificence – not to mention that we have the ability to send ourselves to the moon and back, and the fact that broadcasting as we know it existed long before the advent of broadband made global communication so much easier.

It is this, above all else, that sets human beings apart from their companions on planet earth. The desire of the human to innovate and create, for entertainment or therapy, for fun or medicine – now that‘s something worth celebrating. We may have made drastic changes to this world, or even wrecked it: but in doing so, we have done some marvellous, awesome things.

* Unless you’re using Internet Explorer, in which case the stylesheet doesn’t load as properly as it should. I’ll get to fixing that though, I promise.