Thursday, April 2, 2015

Little Technophile on the Prarie

Brad DeLong has an interesting post (from, believe it or not, Laura Ingalls Wilder) that fits in with one of my favorite ongoing threads, the unprecedented transformation of every aspect of life (at least in places like America) that occurred late in the Nineteenth and early in the Twentieth Centuries.

One of my big complaints about tech journalism is the lack of historical context. Reporters see technology changing the world around them and, through a combination of historical illiteracy and self-absorption, they assume this makes them special.

There's no question that technology has had a big impact on our lives over the the past dozen or so years, but in most ways, 2003 doesn't seem that different. For Wilder in 1911, 1899 was, in almost every respect, another world.

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