“To Fax or Not to Fax” by Judith Hooper
(Paragraph I, Page 34)
Imagine, if you will, a world without window screens. In this pre-1910 world, insects circulate freely through the house, so you might as well sit on your front porch on a summer evening talking to your neighbors. Then someone invents window screens. Later, someone else invents air conditioning and, of course, television, and voila -- a drastic decline in porch sitting. As Americans withdraw into their separate homes to watch Jeopardy! with the air conditioner up high, neighbors become strangers and our community becomes a dim memory. (Clark 34)
Life moves by us at a hectic pace, but slow down
for a moment. We want you to ponder this: an early-20th-century life of
simplicity. Computers haven’t been invented yet, so you spend the cool summer
evening talking to neighbors. Neighbors become strangers and community becomes a
dim memory (Clark 34). First someone invents window screens, then air
conditioning, and then television. The advance in technology has caused a rapid
decline in the number of people getting together to do things -- and a large
increase in the time in which our only companion is a machine. The world may be
getting technologically advanced, but we are forgetting our common humanity.
“Cyberspirit” by Jeff Zaleski
(Final Paragraph, Page 401)
Our creation of the virtual world presents enormous opportunities and dangers. The virtual world, like the real world, is a bramble -- yet among the thorns, flowers bloom. If you enter cyberspace with a clear mind and an open heart, you may just find the information and connections you need to take one step further along the path. (Clark 401)
Paraphrased: When we brought virtual reality into existence, it opened the door to a realm that was beautiful but potentially deadly. The vast reaches of this new realm created a gateway to something wonderful if used correctly -- but perilous if misused. If one goes into the virtual world with a closed mind, you will miss the beauty of it; however, if you enter it willingly and with acceptance, it is a great thing. In other words, if you don’t look closely, the green briar patch will engulf you. Take a closer look, though, and (to paraphrase a poem) watch the red red rose run ‘round the briar.