Steven Johnson and Paul Starr debate the future of news.
Falling sales and profits augur badly for serious news. Two leading US experts ask if an online renaissance is possible.
Recently, Steven Johnson:
In the long run, we’re going to look back at many facets of old media and realize that we were living in a desert disguised as a rain forest.
Recently, Paul Starr:
If we take seriously the notion of newspapers as a fourth estate or a fourth branch of government, the end of the age of newspapers implies a change in our political system itself. If we are to avoid a new era of corruption, we are going to have to summon that power in other ways. Our new technologies do not retire our old responsibilities.
Citizen bloggers and YouTubers believe we have now embraced a new "personal" democracy. But writing is not the capability being offered us by these tools at all. The capability is programming -- which almost none of us really know how to do.
The Sunlight Foundation Labs has announced the winners for their transparency coding contest.
Everyone should learn how to design programs.
Alan Perlis, via Peter Norvig:
Everyone can be taught to sculpt: Michelangelo would have had to be taught how not to. So it is with the great programmers.
Will the coming age of news be better than the old?