Hamlet's Blackberry

Hamlet's Blackberry : Building a Good Life in a Connected World

3.58 (1,641 ratings by Goodreads)
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"To those dithering over whether to close down Facebook accounts, resign from the Twitterati, and resume a more contemplative and more properly connected life, this remarkable book presents the answers and the validation for which you have been hoping. William Powers, brave in intent and wise in argument, offers in these pages an oasis of serenity and sanity, a sanctuary from a world fast turning into a limitless digital Sahara.---Simon Winchester, Author of the Professor and the Madman and the Man Who Loved China" "Always connected. Anytime. Anyplace. We know it's a blessing, but we're starting to notice that it's also a curse. In Hamlet's BlackBerry, William Powers helps us understand what being 'connected' disconnects us from. This is a thoughtful, elegant, and moving book."---Barry Schwartz, Author of the Paradox of Choice: Why More is Less "A brilliant and thoughtful handbook for the Internet age---why we have this screen addiction, its many perils, and some surprising remedies that can make your life better."---Bob Woodward "Benjamin Franklin would love this book. He knew the power of being connected, but also how this must be balanced by moments of reflection.
William Powers offers a practical guide to Socrates' path to the good life, in which our outward and inward selves are at one."---Walter Isaacson, Author of Einstein: His Life and Universe and Benjamin Franklin An American Life "In this delightfully accessible book, Powers asks the questions we all need to ask in this digitally driven time---and teaches us to answer them for ourselves."---Maryanne Wolf, Author of Proust and the Souid: The Story and Science of the Reading Brain A crisp, passionately argued answer to the question that everyone who's grown dependent on digital devices is asking: "Where's the rest of my life?" At a time when we're all trying to make sense of our relentlessly connected lives, this revelatory book presents a bold new approach to the digital age. Part intellectual journey, part memoir, Hamlet's BlackBerry sets out to solve what William Powers calls the conundrum of connectedness. Our computers and mobile devices do wonderful things for us. But they also impose an enormous burden, making it harder for us to focus, do our best work, build strong relationships, and find the depth and fulfillment we crave.
Hamlet's BlackBerry argues that we need a new way of thinking, an everyday philosophy for life with screens. To find it, Powers reaches into the past, uncovering a rich trove of ideas that have helped people manage and enjoy their connected lives for thousands of years. New technologies have always brought the mix of excitement and stress that we feel today. Drawing on some of history's most brilliant thinkers, from Plato to Shakespeare to Thoreau, he shows that digital connectedness serves us best when it's balanced by its opposite, disconnectedness. Using his own life as laboratory and object lesson, Powers demonstrates why this is the moment to revisit our relationship to screens and mobile technologies, and how profound the rewards of doing so can be. Lively, original, and entertaining, Hamlet's BlackBerry will challenge you to rethink your digital life.
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Product details

  • Hardback | 267 pages
  • 147.32 x 210.82 x 33.02mm | 362.87g
  • Scribe Publications
  • Carlton North, Australia
  • English
  • 0061687162
  • 9780061687167
  • 206,892

Review quote

"[An] elegant meditation on our obsessive connectivity and its effect on our brains and our very way of life."--Laurie Winer, New York Times Book Review
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About Jr William Powers

William Powers, a former staff writer for the Washington Post, has written about media, technology, and other subjects for a wide variety of publications, including the Atlantic, the New York Times, and McSweeney's. This book grew out of research he did as a fellow at Harvard University's Joan Shorenstein Center on the Press, Politics and Public Policy. A two-time winner of the Arthur Rowse Award for media criticism, he lives on Cape Cod with his wife, author Martha Sherrill, and their son. This is his first book.
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Rating details

1,641 ratings
3.58 out of 5 stars
5 20% (325)
4 37% (608)
3 29% (477)
2 10% (168)
1 4% (63)
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