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The room was so small that…

The Quality Crown Hotel Paddington is a perfectly good budget hotel in London – modern, clean, friendly, a block from Paddington station, 80 pounds a night – but I’m a little puzzled. When I got here yesterday afternoon, the person at reception told me that he was upgrading me for free to a larger room. I don’t understand how the room could be any smaller unless the bed were half in the shower or if I were required to share it with the harpoonist from the Pequod.

(Ok, it’s a small room. But I’d stay here again.)


I had a jetlag dream that seemed so important and was so vivid that I couldn’t go back to sleep until I wrote down the key points. In it, I was mistakenly admitted to a group meeting with an unnamed Supreme Court justice. When called upon, I explained that there are three key points: 1. We as a culture are becoming comfortable with huge amounts of information and details. 2. We are astoundingly good at evaluating the metadata around that information, deciding how seriously to take it. 3. The value of this is an increasing tolerance of – nay, demand for – complexity.

So, there’s your answer. Now, what was the question?

5 Responses to “The room was so small that…”

  1. Were you reading Ray Kurzweil or Vernor Vinge before bed?

  2. Perhaps you’ve read this, but if not I highly recommend “In Over Our Heads: The Mental Demands of Modern Life” by Robert Kegan (who’s at the Harvard School of Education). Essentially a tour de force model of adult development, he deals extensively with the idea of increasing complexity of society. Your idea of scanning the world’s metadata would probably fit right in, perhaps extending his model with this metaphor.

  3. I say you need to reduce your caffeine intake somewhat…

    As for London hotels, some of the most delightful ones are small also in the number of rooms they have. There is one close to the British Museum called Blooms, which will remember your name and offer you a glass of sherry when you come in. Highly recommended. Tiny rooms, but very friendly.

    As for the question, it must somehow be related to Google Print. Everything else is, at the moment!

  4. Sounds like the question had to do with someone or some government agency controlling the internet. Thus limiting access to information because
    1. They feel we have too much.
    2. They feel we don’t have the ability to determine what is factual and what is not.

    Perhaps this was a residual from David Insbergs discussion you linked to yesterday?

    Or perhaps I need to lay off the caffeine and get back to work.

  5. The question(s) is…

    Do videogames really make us dumber? Is all television bad for us? movies? ….

    Read the book “Everything Bad Is Good for You: How Today’s Popular Culture Is Actually Making Us Smarter” by Steven Johnson.

    Clickity Link Here

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