I'm in the midst of reading "The World is Flat" by Thomas Friedman, and, though I'm less than 100 pages in (after starting it for the third time, now), I'm loving it. In talking about the forces that flattened the world, the second chapter is basically a history of computing technology over the past 15 years, which is, for me, the most interesting and relevant kind of history there is.
Why write about this? Because today I experienced first hand just how technology has changed the way news and information flows, or rather, how it allows news to travel instantaneously across the country. Today was the start of Apple's World Wide Developers Conference, which means today was the day when Uncle Steve gave his keynote address offering the world its first glimpse at Mac OS X 10.5 Leopard. For the Mac enthusiasts out there, such as myself, this is very exciting stuff.
But the keynote isn't broadcast live, which means that there's no way to learn about all the new announcements and such until later, right?
Not in a technologically advanced, flattening world. Using Apple's wireless Internet access from within the auditorium, reporters at the conference were able to post minute by minute updates on websites such as MacRumors.com (that's the one I was watching) to tell those of us not lucky enough to attend in person all the exciting stuff Steve was showing. The page automatically pulled down new content every 60 seconds, which meant that every minute, from my desk in Minneapolis, MN, I was able to read the latest news from the Apple conference taking place hundreds of miles away.
Okay, it was really exciting for me, not just because of all the cool new toys and features we have to look forward to from Apple, but because of just how amazingly amazing this flow of information was, and how exciting it is to be living in a time with all of these realities in our every day lives that weren't even being dreamt of 20 years ago when I was born.