On Friday evening, I was stuck in Chicago Midway’s airport for numerous hours due to east coast weather affecting my plane’s arrival into the Midwest. While I was sitting there, I was continually drawn to my mobile devices for information – about the unknown in the conversation I was having with my wife, updates of flight status information, tracking of the plane that was supposed to arrive, and everything in between.
The power of information and knowledge is something that often goes understated when looking at these devices. One of my cousins said “once you get an iPhone, you don’t have to think anymore.” Although I understand her point about the ease of use and availability of different types of apps, I correct her viewpoint by stating that we think differently when utilizing a mobile device. When using these devices we can perform certain searches to have the information that we need to answer questions or be on the cutting edge, but we still have to think about the information that we are reading.
In Dr. Burbules’ class last week, a discussion ensued about collective knowledge and seeking knowledge as opposed to information. I found the conversation quite thought-provoking, yet saw it come to fruition on Friday night. As I was sitting there searching for endless information, I realized that I was only searching for information not trying to gain knowledge. I wanted instantaneous feedback on quick instances of information by doing quick Google searches or uncovering information within the Southwest app. Sure, I consumed a lot of my time by doing this, but shouldn’t I have spent the time reading the book that I checked out through my OverDrive app? Or the assigned readings for either of the grad school classes? That’s the knowledge that I could have applied in this situation.
So, next time I have a couple of hours to kill while waiting in the airport, I know I need to be more proactive with my time in searching for knowledge as opposed to information. Yet, the thoughts remain the same, I needed my mobile devices to do either!