The User Illusion
Cutting Consciousness Down to SizeBook - 1998
The ?user illusion? of this groundbreaking book's title comes from the computer industry and refers to the simplistic mental image most of us have of our PCs. Our consciousness, says N'rretranders, is our user illusion of ourselves. For example: ? In any given second, we consciously process only sixteen of the eleven million bits of information our senses pass on to our brains. ? Since it takes half a second to discard those bits of information we don't use, there's a half second delay between reality and our perception of it. If a baseball player thought about swinging at a pitch, he'd never hit the ball. ?Real communication consists of the vast amount of information that's left out'what the author calls ?exformation'not the minuscule percentage that's left in.The User Illusion makes the case that humans are designed for a much richer existence than processing a dribble of data from a computer screen, which actually constitutes a form of sensory deprivation. In fact, there is far too little information in the so-called Information Age.Drawing on wildly disparate areas of scientific research, Tor N'rretranders makes a compelling case for putting consciousness in perspective and embracing all that the world has to offer.
Publisher: New York : Viking Penguin, 1998
Characteristics: xii, 467 p. : ill. ; 24 cm