Wednesday, 18 August 2021

Information

It struck me this morning - as it often does - just how lucky we are to have so much information at our fingertips.  When I was a child we had a radio - I think it had valves (somebody will no doubt enlighten me, it is all a long time ago).   It was made out of what I presume was bakelite and it was circular on a little stand.   We thought it was the bees knees and gathered round it in the evening to listen to programmes like ITMA.   As for the news - yes there was a short bulletin at set times each day but in our household at least' proper' news came from the Daily Herald - my father read every word and given half a chance would pontificate on it (as it was a red hot Labour paper to say it was politically biased was an understatement)

Now there is  news to be had all  day every day - a special News channel, a Breakfast News special each morning, regular news broadcasts every few hours on every channel, plus of course a surfeit of newspapers depending upon one's political preference  (no longer a Herald though - it went the way of all flesh years ago).   This means that we are bombarded with news; so much so that we get tired of the lot of it and mentally switch off.

But where we are so very lucky is in that huge wealth of information which means that we no longer have to have giant bookshelves full of Atlases, Encyclopaedias and the like. Now at the touch of a button we can bring up almost everything on the screen.   And we bloggers can exchange information with a blogpost or an email, without the need for a stamp, a trip to the post box  and a wait for a reply.

Yesterday Rachel told us she had been up to London to see the Paula Rego exhibition.   I thought it sounded good and told her so.   By return she told me there was still a programme on iplayer about her.   This morning I watched it - absolutely fascinating stuff - if I had to sit an exam on her work and I watched the film a couple more times it would give me a good grounding for further research.   So thank you Rachel (Rachel Phillips) - I am going now to watch the programme again over my tea,


20 comments:

Derek Faulkner said...

When I was a boy our wireless was powered by what was known as an accumalator. That was a square, glass thing about nine inches high and full of clear liquid which I presume was some kind of acid. This glass thing was capped off and two terminals were present to which you connected your wireless wires. Every week these accumaltors needed re-charging and we took then to either an official shop or a back garden place where they were exchanged for re-charged ones.
As for the news, well like you say, we are swamped with variations of it daily. Personally, it doesn't affect me like it seems to you, I watch it and move on.

JayCee said...

We had a big old brown wireless at home and I remember sitting beside it for Listen With Mother before I was old enough to start school. Much later we had a radiogram in the sitting room.
These days I no longer listen to the radio or watch much TV. Most of my news and information now comes to me online, with subtitles for any TV or video footage.

Rachel Phillips said...

Yes, we do have what could be called an overload of news if we wish to let ourselves. Personally I don't and find out what I want for myself, as and when I want to.
I am glad you enjoyed the Paula Rego documentary.

Tasker Dunham said...

I'm afraid I still do have giant bookshelves full of Atlases, Encyclopaedias and the like.

the veg artist said...

Yes, there's lots of information, but I don't believe all of it! References, like maps, are brilliant - I love street view, for example. On-line arts/museum and gallery sites are also excellent. Using the zoom-in feature on paintings is fascinating. News, though, I'm a bit cynical about. Unless it is an event that has been filmed (and the footage is recent), there is way too much personal opinion for my liking. Like your old Daily Herald, there is too much bias. Journalists don't stick to reporting the news, they feel they have to comment on it.

CharlotteP said...

Yes, perhaps someone mentions a book you would like to read, you order it online, and it's with you the next day; or they mention a piece of music, and you find there are 4 different versions you can listen to immediately...this is a wonderful gift, but the flip side is the pace of change of life today, which I am not convinced is healthy, possibly contributing to the escalation of mental health problems we see.

Rachel Phillips said...

Newspapers always have been partisan. Television channels used to be independent. Now they have political editors.

Heather said...

I can remember a radio powered by an accumulator which was quite a large and heavy object. During WW2 newspapers were restricted to two sheets I believe - such a contrast to the vast numbers which make up today's papers.
There are many different online courses available and one can even take a degree course with the Open University.
As you say - how lucky we are.

Bonnie said...

The internet is a two-sided coin with much incorrect information on one side but a wonderful source of information on the other. I rarely get news from the internet but I do love it as a source for other types of information. It can be like having a whole library in your home or in the case of a smartphone, in your hand. I love the ability to look up information on almost anything I would like to learn more about. In this world we just have to be careful about what sources we trust and believe.

John "By Stargoose And Hanglands" said...

I get most of the news from the radio: half an hour listening in the morning is usually enough to keep me up to date and, if I'm feeling masochistic, another half hour in the evening. I don't think most people realise just how much information there is on the internet and how you can use it.

Debby said...

So much information, but also so much misinformation.

Chris said...

I get a daily newspaper and have the radio on during the day. But I find I am skipping through a lot of the news and turning off the radio more frequently as it is so repetitive. Better ways to use my time!

Anonymous said...

I miss snail mail, the pleasure of the letter box rattling and a letter on the mat. But I'm thankful for the internet, although much of my time is wasted on it and I know it's not healthy. Without it I'd be even more lonely, several years of looking after my partner full time meant my friends dwindled to none over the years. Now I'm alone my friend is the laptop. Thank goodness for blogs.

Jane said...

Sorry, forgot to leave my name and anonymous came up. Jane

Anonymous said...

I have lifetime love of radio Pat. When I was tiny, my father provided me with a crystal set and I would go to sleep listening to it.
I can also remember listening to 'Kindergarten of the Air' on the large bakelite radio, as a pre-schooler in at the sunny front room while Mum polished the lino or did the washing.
Now in my late sixties, I still go to sleep listening to fascinating programs, including the BBC which of course is in daytime mode
opposite to our night time. I worked for many years in a radio station. Also it was in the days before equal pay for men and women, and farewell gifts if you were getting married...the term of 'male chauvanist pig' was new, and bandied about quite a bit in that radio environment and also the television station across the road from it...early 1970's. - Pam, Aust.

Joanne Noragon said...

The oldest radio I remember was a console, floor model, and it also had a side to play records. It ran on vacuum tubes, as if I know what they do. My parents listened to the news, we children used it for the Long Ranger and Hopalong Cassidy. In the morning, though, we had to leave for school when Martin Agronsky went off. He was a news broadcaster sponsored by the AFofL CIO. I believe that all is correct, and I can barely believe it just came tumbling out.

Susan said...

I find our news repeats on the TV and radio. The same thing can repeat for three days continuously. Depending on the station, the spin can be a bit different. Today, any topic can be researched online. The key is to use reliable online sources.

The Weaver of Grass said...

What fascinating answers you all give me - and Jane, why not start a blog of your own, then wecan all have chats with you and in no time at all you will have a lovely
new batch of friends - life would be very dull for me without you all. Don't we all have good radio memories.

Victoria said...
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