Sunday, February 22, 2009

Technology, Creativity, and Information

Friday afternoon, I attended a talk by a guy named Charles Lee at sozo. Charles comes from the South Bay area of Los Angeles (Torrance) where he not only pastors a church, but he is heavily involved in social justice and in teaching creativity.

He and many others (including our friends at Google) realize that we are in a rapidly changing world. Information is traveling faster than it ever has in history. People in our world today have more information at their fingertips than at any point in history. As you can see from the video above, our world is moving very quickly.

It's kind of funny. You can feel the movement at times. Like I notice that there never seems to be enough time to do all that you want to do anymore--there's so much going on with every decision we make. As I reflect a bit more on my time in the desert this was one of the aspects of that time that is coming into focus for me.

Literally the morning I left, my email inbox was bombarded with requests and information. I had someone call me 10 minutes before I departed into the desert who needed information shared with him immediately. There was really no 'down-time' in the days leading up to the desert. And when I came back, everything felt like a whirlwind rush. I jumped in a car, drove for an hour and fifteen minutes, ate dinner, packed my bags, checked-in for my flight, and went to bed. The next morning, I got up, went to the airport with my dad, hopped on a plane, rushed to make a connecting flight, and arrived in Pittsburgh. From pittsburgh, me, dad, and Jamie ate dinner and drove to morgantown. Upon arrival, I talked for a bit with folks, caught up, went to sleep, and then spent the entirety of the next day answering emails, voicemails, and txts that came to me during the desert time, and then began preparing for a week of another world is possible. Our world is definitely fast paced. And when you come back from the desert, you also realize how heavily distracted our world can be from the things that are most important.

In the middle of that difficulty, we have a huge challenge. As Charles Lee shared on Friday, and as the Senior Vice President of Google shared in this blog which you should take the time to read, we are in a place where great good can come from attempting to stay ahead of the technology curve. We need to plan for a future in which we don't know what the technologies will be. As Charles pointed out, we need to creatively come up with ways for people to connect, share, and improve ideas. We have tons of information at our fingertips, but many of us have lost our knack at creativity.

You might remember my posts about the environment last Spring and the ideas I shared from Matthew Sleeth's book and lecture in Morgantown, but one thing I may not have shared was his insight that a lack of creativity is connected to our connectedness to the created world. It might be worth while to slow down a bit and create some space to let ideas run wild in our minds.

We have tons of information and amazing technology at our fingertips. We have amazing potential (unlike any other point in history) to make sweeping changes that will either be hugely detrimental or hugely helpful for future generations of people made in the image of God.

In my mind, in light of all of this the question before us is challenging yet simple. What will we do with all that we have been given to bless others and care for those in the world around us? To whom much is given, much is expected. Take some time today to think about long term solutions and real change that YOU might be part of bringing about.

1 comment:

Zach & Beth Matthews said...

Hi Billy! I just wanted to make a quick post & say hi! Haven't talked to you in awhile! Zach and I moved to Knoxville, TN in December for just settling into life here. All is good! How have you been! Hopet to hear from you soon! Love, Beth