Theology After Google (And Apple?)
Last week, I had the privilege of speaking, via Skype, with the “Theology After Google” class at Claremont School of Theology. Tripp Fuller, who is co-leading the class with Phillip Clayton, recorded my abbreviated talk on “The Theology of Twitter,” and I’m grateful to him for posting it online:
I’m extremely excited to be speaking at the “Theology After Google” conference, March 10-12, at Claremont. I’ll be joining Tony Jones, Adam Walker Cleaveland, Spencer Burke, John Franke, Dwight Friesen, Jon Irvine, and others. If you’re interested in learning more about using social media in communicating ideas (especially folks on the West Coast), I hope you’ll consider coming out to this unique conference!
My Take on the Apple iPad
The big news last week was the launch of Apple’s much-anticipated iPad tablet computer. I wrote up the story for the Halogen TV website with my prediction: “It’s not the device itself that’s magical. It’s the innovation that the device now allows—the new interactive games/applications and multimedia ebooks/e-publications (magazines and newspapers) that are going to be developed—which will make the iPad a ‘revolutionary,’ must-have device.”
“Theology After Google” student Wesley Menke nicely synthesized the iPad news with my presentation in his blog post “Apple’s ‘Magical Realism.'” His take on the “magical” language employed by Apple in its marketing of the iPad and contrasting it with the “liturgical” (“work of the people”) concept of Web 2.0/new media is a great observation. This is, in fact, one of the big criticisms of the iPad—that it is a device for consuming media rather than creating media.
I don’t think this is in any way an “accident.” Apple is, no doubt, banking on the market being ready for a consumer device for reading/experiencing multimedia e-books and e-publications (magazines and newspapers). Other companies are quickly joining the e-reader/tablet PC race, but their offerings will now have to stack up against the iPad. And, besides, Apple’s computers are built for creating, while their other mobile devices (iPod, iPhone) are not. In that sense, iPad fits perfectly with Apple’s other mobile devices, and this makes perfect sense now that Steve Jobs is calling Apple “a mobile devices company.”