First of all, I want to address my experience with analog technology. Sadly, I have not had too much experience with this form of technology, but my love for old-school techniques has always been there. This is evident in how I prefer to have physical books. In his book, Mod addresses how much of what an average person reads is formless, meaning it can be transitioned to other mediums. While I agree with that assertion, I also see how the digital medium is less comfortable than the traditional printed type. While I have read books online, especially during the pandemic, I find often find it to hurt my eyes after a while. To me, nothing beats a printed book since I can comfortably hold it in my hands, and not have to go through many hurdles to access it. Maybe it is because of how I was raised with print books and I have gotten used to and feel nostalgic when I use them, but I do not think that current digital technology can outdo the print medium.
However, it would be wrong to admit that there are clear advantages to digital books. The biggest advantage is more about its ecological footprint than about aesthetics. Print books are taxing towards trees and are a big reason why I will switch to digital options eventually. Nostalgia, however, will be the death of us…
Nostalgia plays a key role in why we will never exist in a purely digital society. What I mean by this arbitrary term is completely relying on digital technologies as a medium for expression. We see this now with the resurgence in analog technology in areas such as film. I find the argument of nostalgia used in the context of humans always looking back at “simpler times”, and wanting to travel back in time. It is also important to make sure we remember how these older technologies work in order to appreciate how far we have come. While looking back may seem redundant, it is important to see the evolution of a field and nostalgia is important here since, with it, we can use these older technologies to create new products or expressions of art.
Lastly, this debate reminds me of how my mom always has a paper copy of everything, just in case if digital technology fails her, a practice that I have also adopted recently!