Hamlet on the Holodeck by Janet H. Murray

“The birth of a new medium of communication is both exhilarating and frightening. Any industrial technology that dramatically extends our capabilities also makes us uneasy by challenging our concept of humanity itself” (Murray 1). It’s interesting exploring the minds of the different people of the world, especially those people who are beyond the intelligence level that us people are used to. Janet H. Murray writes in her book, Hamlet on the Holodeck, about her life, and experiences throughout her life with computers from her at a young age, to her adult life. Murray has found herself in the depths of the computer, where she learns about herself, and about the world and the people in it. She has committed her life to learning new things, and finds anything out of the ordinary exciting because it is something that she can explore and figure out.

From reading the introduction of the novel, I have found myself thinking of how intelligent this author is. She went to Harvard, is a teacher, and also seems to be a computer genius. She seems “down to earth,” and also seems very interested in helping others, especially kids with learning the new technologies that come out every year. Even though her students are in a world of technology, where books are now put on the Internet, on Kindles, and Nooks, etc., she states, “I am not among those who are eager for the death of the book, as I hope the present volume demonstrates…The computer is the enemy of the book” (Murray 8). She wants to make “the dumb machines sing”(Murray 9), but yet she still wants to have the two different medias of books and computers.

All in all, Janet H. Murray is a very knowledgable writer and computer expert who knows what she is talking about. Murray’s novel, Hamlet on the Holodeck seems very intriguing, and I am very excited to start reading it. Computers are one of my favorite things in life, and I am hoping to learn more about how our culture, and how society is going to change from the different ways our books and novels are going to be set to a new media, the computer.

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2 Comments (+add yours?)

  1. brianna2393
    Aug 29, 2012 @ 21:13:49

    I think you gave a great summary of what the reading was about. I also liked how you related it to your life and your thoughts. I think that possibly your post could have used a little more of a critical interpretation aspect, but I did not have the text books at that point, so I have no idea if there was anything more critical in the readings to be discovered.
    I think that the quotations that you chose to include illustrate your point and were thought provoking. I am still pondering where the author states that the computer is the enemy of the book. I strongly disagree, as do a lot of people seeing that the nature of our class is all about online text. I think that quote really encompasses the real issue in literature today though.

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