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How Digital Memory Is Shaping Our Future

How Digital Memory Is Shaping Our Future

Abby Smith Rumsey

About This Talk

March 29, 02016

Memory technologies from papyrus to print have given humans a unique survival advantage: allowing us to accumulate knowledge. These technologies shape our perception of history, time, and personal and cultural identity.

The capacity of our brains to remember lags far behind our capacity to generate information. Digital technology gives us an abundance of information, but creates a scarcity of attention that makes it hard for us to grasp what is important before it slips away. Unless we learn how to preserve memory in the digital age, we risk losing the traces of the past that are vital for building a future true to our commitment to democratic access to information.

Memory is not about the past, it is about the future. Historian and media expert Abby Smith Rumsey explores how digital memory, which cannot be preserved, will shape the future of knowledge and affect our survival.

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