EDITORIAL

When Apps are Down

Apps
Source: Google

On Sunday, Prime Minister Narendra Modi, a book lover himself, tweeted with an appeal to his followers to keep reading books and sharing their experiences – what they have read and what they have learned – on the Namo App. Here is the Prime Minister of the country urging people to make reading a habit, a sort of passion. Needless to say, books are man’s best companions, not only for knowledge and recreation, but also for the act of pondering – analysis and introspection. Histories of great men and women inform us of the value they attached to books and how the books they were into deeply had helped them evolve into giants in their fields. However, the era of Facebook and Twitter, and the many apps available for virtually everything on earth, has left people, especially the youth who must make reading a habit, with very little time for such noble things, which are intellectually challenging and rewarding too. Such is the obsession with the smartphone that an outage of even an hour on Facebook leaves people virtually crippled. It is as if they feel the world has come to an end! On June 3, Google apps such as YouTube, Gmail and Nest, along with Snapchat and other web services, stopped working for users across the US and Europe for almost four hours, and there were reports of users going crazy, as if a cataclysm had struck. Had they been as zealous a book-reading people as they are when it comes to the internet, they would not have panicked; instead, they would have picked up a book to make up for the loss of their virtual reality universe and to add to their knowledge base in multifarious ways. The crux of the matter is whether we have the will to pick up a book and go in for some creative adventure. Remember, there is no alternative to books despite the flood of apps.