Early days

What are the major consequences of internet on society and culture? Perhaps it’s too early to tell.

Clay Shirky, on last week’s episode of Spark:

If you had gone to Germany in the mid-1470s and said, let’s see what this printing press is doing, right, you would miss novels, you would miss newspapers, you would miss the rise of scientific publication, you would miss Martin Luther’s “95 Theses,” you would miss the Venetian publishing industry. So many of the changes brought by the kind of abundance created by the printing press were in the second 50 years of its existence, if not the second century of its existence, that I think that over-extrapolating from current trends would leave us in the same position as if we tried to do the printing press in 1473.

And Bob Stein, on last week’s episode of On The Media:

Here’s a wonderful sort of factoid which may be helpful: The Western version of the printing press is invented in 1454. It takes 50 years for page numbers to emerge. It took humans that long to figure out that it might be useful to put numbers onto the pages.

Or, as management-types like to say, “It’s early days.”