[PM]互联网将把我们带向何方

Google’s “Chief Internet Evangelist” talks about the direction of online connectivity and communication

谷歌的“首席互联网传道士”畅谈网络连通性与信息通讯的方向。

By Brian Wolly

作者:布莱恩·沃利

Smithsonian magazine, August 2010

史密森纳杂志,2010年8月


文顿·塞弗,一名互联网先驱者,注意到分辨互联网信息真假的必要性。

In the late 1960s, when Vinton Cerf was a UCLA graduate student in computer science, he helped design ARPAnet, a predecessor of the Internet. He’s now a vice president of engineering at Google, the search engine giant that owns YouTube and is extending its reach to mobile devices, publishing and journalism. He spoke with associate Web editor Brian Wolly about how the Web will evolve.

回溯1960年代晚期,那时文顿·塞弗自加州大学洛杉矶分校计算机科学本科毕业,他帮助设计了因特网的前身ARPAnet(高等研究计划通讯网络)。塞弗现在是谷歌主管工程的副总裁——谷歌不仅是搜索引擎的巨头,YouTube即其麾下之军,还将触手伸向了移动设备、出版和新闻业。他与网站副编辑布莱恩·沃利就网络前景展开了谈话。

Ten or more years from now, how will we communicate with one another?

10年或更久之后,人们将如何沟通彼此?

It’s very possible we will be more continuously connected. Even today, people have Bluetooth things hanging in their ears. There’s no reason they won’t have a video camera located in a buttonhole, maybe even a video projector. And there’ll be no need to carry a laptop or [computer] notebook, because any flat surface with reasonable visibility could become a display.

基本上我们会处于更为持续不断的联系中。就算是在今天,人们也将蓝牙设备时刻挂在耳边。可以想见未来会有嵌入纽扣的摄像头,甚至是投影仪。将来则不再需要携带笔记本电脑或者便携设备,因为任何可见的平面都能被当作“屏幕”来使用。

Virtually any appliance is going to be online. Appliances will talk to each other and to the power-generation system. Our appliances will pay attention to our preferences.

事实上任何设备都会被连入网络。设备与设备之间可以彼此连通,也可以与供电系统相联系。我们的电器会“关注”使用者的偏好。

One of the real hard questions is, how will we keep up with all [the new applications]? Maybe our [computer] systems will be more aware of what our daily lives are like, what things we want to accomplish in the course of a day, and if that could be built into the software, maybe some of this stuff won’t even require our explicit interaction.

真正的问题之一在于,人如何与设备互动?也许电脑系统更能“觉察”我们日常生活的模样、在一天中我们希望完成哪些事务、是否能够将之嵌入软件,可能其中一些工作甚至不需要人类发出明确的命令即可完成。

How will today’s young people benefit?

现今的年轻人如何从中获益?

How old is YouTube? Four or five years, right? And it has become an enormous phenomenon. At Google we see 23 hours of video being uploaded to YouTube per minute, and I’m sure that will increase over time. So trying to project what tools will be available over the next 40 years is really daunting.

YouTube芳龄几何?仅仅4年?还是5年?它已然变为一个庞大的现象。在谷歌,我们发现每一分钟都有长度为23小时的视频被上传到YouTube上,而且我肯定将来还会更进一步。所以,试图设计未来40年可用的(互联网)应用着实令人望而生畏。

Henry Kissinger once told me he was very concerned about the Internet’s impact on people’s ability to absorb information in a concentrated way, because we’ve become accustomed to looking up something, getting a snippet and being satisfied with that—as opposed to reading through and considering a weighty tome that goes into great depth.

亨利·基辛格曾对我说他非常担心互联网在人类集中精力获取信息的能力方面造成的影响,因为我们已经开始习惯于搜索某样事物、得到一些细枝末节并且就此满足——同时不愿意通读信息,以及考虑阅读大部头的著作来深入吸收知识。

I am reminded of the apocryphal story of someone complaining about the invention of writing because it would cause us to stop remembering things. Nonetheless, writing turned out to be pretty important. [Kissinger’s] complaint may or may not be a materially serious issue.

(由此)我想到了一则杜撰的故事,所谓有人认为写作会使人丧失记忆事物的能力。尽管如此,写作还是变得相当重要。基辛格抱怨的情形或者也许可能不会形成什么严重的问题。

I’m not sure we know enough at this stage to justify a conclusion about the benefits of the kind of interactive, fast exchanges that take place in multi-user games [on the Web]. Are we solving problems, learning how to multitask? Is that a good thing? I don’t know. It’s a little bit like television. When it arrived there were many expectations that it would improve education and everything else. But what we discovered is there’s a finite amount of quality in the universe, and when there are more channels it has to be cut up into smaller and smaller amounts until finally, every channel delivers close to zero quality, and that’s where we are today, with a few exceptions.

我无法肯定,眼下我们已经获得足够的信息以证明发生在多人网游上快速交换信息的互动方式会有所益处。我们解决了问题,学会如何同时处理多项事务吗?这样有好处吗?我不清楚。这有点像是电视机,自其诞生起就有很多人期待它能改善教育和其他事务。但是我们发现电视在此时空中作用有限,而且电视台越多,作用就越琐碎,直至最后,每个电视台几乎都无所作为,这就是我们所处的情形,不外乎如此。

One thing we know for sure is that the Web is a collaborative medium unlike any we’ve ever had before. We see people working together, playing together, interacting in social settings using these media. We hope that will emerge as the new tool for education.

我们明确知晓的是,互联网是一种以前从未出现过的合作式媒介。人们一同工作、一同娱乐,利用这些媒介在社交场合中交流彼此。我们希望这将成为新的教育手段。

The problem is—and this is true of books and every other medium—we don’t know whether the information we find [on the Web] is accurate or not. We don’t necessarily know what its provenance is. So we have to teach people how to assess what they’ve found. That’s a skill, a critical-thinking capacity, which is important no matter what the medium. It’s just more dramatic in the World Wide Web, where there’s so much juxtaposition of the good stuff and not-so-good stuff and flat-out-wrong stuff or deliberate misinformation or plain ignorance.

问题在于——对于书籍和其他所有(信息)媒介亦同——我们不清楚从网络上寻获的信息准确与否。人们没有必要知晓信息来源,所以我们必须教会他们如何评判找到的信息。这是一种带有批判思维的能力和技巧,不论对于哪一种媒介来说都是非常重要的。只不过在互联网世界中显得更为突出,因为,在这里,良好的信息、不那么好的信息、错误的信息、故意误导的信息或者仅仅就是无知导致的错误之间没有那么明显的区别。

 

Advertisements

发表评论

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out / 更改 )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out / 更改 )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out / 更改 )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out / 更改 )

Connecting to %s

%d 博主赞过: