Accelerating speed of information delivery and communications

A lot has changed since the civil war in the United States when the principal means of long distance communications was the telegraph. Newspapers took days to get the news into the hands of the citizenry and information traveled slowly.

Compare that with what we’re dealing with today: hundreds of TV channels; newspapers; magazines; web sites; and now the river of news and information that is streaming toward us helped along by the Internet and really simple syndication (RSS).

Most of yesterday I was tied up and got back to my office about 5:30pm and discovered 1,749 feeds in my RSS reader! Not all of these posts and articles are relevant or interesting, but scanning them is still important since every single day I pull a dozen or so into my saved articles for future reference or because they inform something.

Add to that email, SMS, instant messaging, voicemails, the newspapers I read and the shows I TiVo, the DVD’s I receive by mail, the podcasts I subscribe to, the music I own and continue to purchase, the five or six books I have going at any given time, and even *I* start to chuckle at the deluge of information that comes my way.

This is after I’ve been pretty rigorous about unsubscribing to feeds, podcasts and email newsletters, letting print publication subscriptions lapse, and deleting the recording of TV content I don’t care about any longer.

Here’s the kicker: about as fast as I push stuff away, new opportunities pop up. There are new online video sites I want to go to, Facebook apps to try out, new communications methods to explore and other bloggers with interesting things to say. More and more of my friends and colleagues want to reach out to me with alternative forms of communications and are asking me to join all sorts of new offerings.

How are you managing your tsunami of accelerating communications? This is only going to become a bigger issue and I need to figure out better ways to manage my information delivery and communications with better tools and approaches.

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  1. Ken Leebow on August 1, 2007 at 1:37 pm

    More is more, certainly not better. So, it’s a good idea to turn off most of the information flow. Whether it’s CNN, FOX, blogs, newsfeeds, most of the information is irrelevant.

    Find a few good resources and you’ll find less is more. Oh yeah, and you’ll have a lot more time on your hands.

  2. Scott Niesen on August 1, 2007 at 4:24 pm

    You might want to try an attention driven RSS reader. These readers can intelligently prioritize feeds and articles so the content that is most relevant to you surfaces automatically.

    Here’s some more information:

  3. Jeff on August 1, 2007 at 7:59 pm

    While news is important, having the free time to make your own “news” in your life is far more important than knowing how many people, where, and how died today.

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About Steve Borsch

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Podcasting hit the mainstream in July of 2005 when Apple added podcast show support within iTunes. I'd seen this coming so started podcasting in May of 2005 and kept going until August of 2007. Unfortunately was never 'discovered' by national broadcasters, but made a delightfully large number of connections with people all over the world because of these shows. Click here to view the archive of my podcast posts.