Friday, September 21, 2007

Phone Books

When we were still in Cisco, my mom couldn't find her phone book for Abilene, so my sister brought over her spare. It's a good-sized book, thick but with a smaller page size than I'm used to in Southern California. The phone book for Cisco is so small, I wouldn't have known what it was if I hadn't seen my mom using it.

I have phone books at my house, two sets of two books: one white pages and one yellow pages. But I almost never use them. Most of the individuals I need to look up are in our church directory, so I use that. If I need a business phone number, I type the name in Google, and one of the search results will have it. If I need the address, I'll click on their website to get it.

I'm not sure when the change happened. I used to use the phone books all the time. But now, if I need to call my doctor, it's easier to Google his name than decide which book to pull out and then flip through the pages and look down the columns until I find it. And it's been easier for a long time.

The Information Age has brought changes that are huge, like a computer (or more) in nearly every house. But it has also brought changes that are more subtle. More and more, we're going to discover that the hallmarks of our times have become hallmarks of a bygone era. The phone book is just the beginning.

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