Torea Frey

Editor, writer, photographer, observer on the street.

The Information

I had something of a hard time hanging with the entirety of James Gleick's The Information (one-line Janet Maslin review, extracted from the Times: "The Information is to the nature, history, and significance of data what the beach is to sand.").That said, the book's final paragraph is a thing of real beauty:

The library will endure; it is the universe. As for us, everything has not been written; we are not turning into phantoms. We walk the corridors, searching the shelves and rearranging them, looking for lines of meaning amid leagues of cacophony and incoherence, reading the history of the past and of the future, collecting our thoughts and collecting the thoughts of others, and every so often glimpsing mirrors, in which we may recognize creatures of the information.

Perhaps this is indecipherable denuded of the context of the 500-odd page tome, but I found it striking. Lots of provocative ideas and little bits of history and culture; tons to unpack and meditate on.