Books vs Google !!!
Today while I was dusting the bookshelves I found the moth-eaten remains of a few pages from the BRITANNICA dated 3 decades ago. I stood and went back to THAT era till my maid nudged me with the broom and jolted me out of my reverence. Once I finished the household chores, I sat down with the tattered Britannica to paste the pages back into it!
I am a 30 plus lady of today, so around 2 decades back when I was in school, studying, I had to make projects for her school assessment.
Was it different?
Yes …. Very!
So what was so different?
The fact that in those days google was not a feature in every home! In fact, a desktop computer was a thing of fashion! So how did I study? Books! Yes. Books came to the rescue
Books: The Paradise for Readers
Till 1999 things were very different! Kids used to be immersed in books 24x7. Not because they were bookworms, but because the only source of knowledge was either books or applied knowledge from the books. As much as this method might sound outdated and boring today, but in those times, this was the only way of learning! Yes, there wasn’t technology or digitization, but the best part was, the imaginations could run wild! The books of those times –The Famous Five, Secret seven, etc, were in vogue! To us, books opened the world which we could never have in reality! It took us to a different land or helped us to transform into different characters.
The Transition from Books to Google
Today what we come across as a digital library used to be an actual library, with chairs where one could be seated for hours and remain lost in the pool of knowledge or a story of his choice! Nowadays we have digital platforms like Augmented Reality, Virtual Reality, etc, where we can choose, change, shape, or enhance our surroundings virtually. No matter how cool it looks, but it leaves very little scope for the imagination! With the turn of the millennium, computers and technology became very progressive. Suddenly, there was something new called the World Wide Web, Internet, and Google! While the internet was the first one to make its entry in 1983, the next came the World Wide Web is in 1989 and finally came to Google in 1998. As googly as It looked…. It changed the whole world! It literally took over all platforms in every sphere of life! In 10years, by 2010, we could not imagine a life without the internet anymore. Publications across the world suffered a huge setback as suddenly the digital books replaced the actual books. Suddenly we were reading on Kindle and listening to audiobooks.
So what’s the difference you may ask;
Now, first of all, both are very different as platforms! Books are on a particular topic or person or place or trait etc.! It objectifies the subject! So you can get the knowledge of one particular domain at one particular time in a book. Google is a search engine! So you can know about anything and everything on the platform. So it is like the modern-day Encyclopaedia.
Vedas – The Indianised Google
Specifically in India, we have ledgers of knowledge in the form of Vedas! The ultimate source of knowledge…… which provides quite a challenge to Google. Today for a simple home remedy for diabetes, we google it! But, if we refer to the Vedas, we will find the same remedy over there! But the point is…. Who will do the searching…. The more important question is…. Where is the TIME to do that searching?
Advantages of Google
So the major advantage that Google has over books is that it is FAST and less time-consuming! Secondly, it has information on everything from everywhere anytime! So does that lower the value of books?
What gives books an edge?
Books have a very special place. At least for the earlier generations! For some, like me, having a good collection of books is a matter of pride! That smell of the new print, that feel of the crisp new pages……..Google can never replace that! The signed first edition by the authors…… is a huge sense of accomplishment in itself! Books motivate the readers to think, reflect on learning the art of communication with a good vocabulary. With Google, it has handicapped the word building spoken skills very adversely. Although a whole lot of activities are available online today, the fun of making a model for a project, individually or in a group is beyond compare! War of Books vs. Google The argument between books vs. Google can never be settled because it is primarily focused on perspective, which is again based on an individual’s exposure! Today’s generation will never know the value or relevance of books…..so much because they are born and growing up in such an age where they have quick, and accurate technology of Google at their fingertips! On the other hand, the generation of yesteryear will never be comfortable with the technology, because, for them, it’s not authentic; a book is more appealing!
To say that Google’s information is always right or wrong is not right! After all, it is a search engine that searches to the best of the ability… but the source form which it is picking up the result if they are not authentic then can we blame Google? Even books or newspapers sometimes publish things by mistake… and then print a retraction! So the slightest of doubt will always remain whether it’s a book or even if it's Google!
Hence we can conclude by saying that, in the battle of books vs. google, there is no one superior to the other. Both have their own armies of benefits and their own small colonies of flaws! It’s a draw! Happy Reading Guys….. books or on Google…..! ;)