This is the kind of book that makes you dream and be all nostalgic about stuff.
For one, I started thinking about the Apple II computers that were a part of my childhood. I mean what I did was play Super Bunny with my friends – which makes me wonder how much of the memory and fun was because it was with friends, or it was because we were playing a game…
And why did this memory of all things came about?
I guess because there was a chapter on how basically giving students computers didn’t really help them do any better in school… and how the students interviewed learned better with analog things: papers, books etc.
Part 1 of the book begins with analog things, discussing about the comeback of vinyl records, the whole idea of why physical books and bookstores are important, the difference between shooting photos on film and digital, and how board games are beyond just the games.
Part 2 talks about print media, the retail brick and mortar shop world, and how the analog experience is like in the context of work, school, the tech world and summer camps.
Things like how music, easier to listen to digital versions but the inconvenience is also an experience… how you get better sound with analog playback, and the back story behind the marketing of Moleskine notebook is all interesting to discover.
All in all, coming from my perspective, this book raises a lot of questions about when analog can be an appropriate (or better option) and when digital can be powerful.
From my perspective (a musician who embraces social media as a great tool for independent musicians and someone who still prefers a lot of analog things: CDs, vinyl records, physical books), this book is a worthwhile read, even if it took me some time to finish going through it. In fact, the pace of me consuming it was often interrupted by my desire to check my social media, which in turn proves some of the points the author talks about in the book.
Should you read this book?
If you’re a creative or artist making art, and you’re curious about the relevance of analog media, then yes, read this.
If you’re fascinated with this topic, yes… read it.
But, if you’re all about doing everything on your phone and if you see no use or practicality to meeting in person, holding physical books or learning beyond online settings… then read this if you’re up for something to challenge your world view.
I’m glad I read it and now am figuring out which parts of I’ll apply into my 2023 world. We’ll see.
Pros: A good introduction to the relevance of analog media in a world consumed by speed and ease of access via digital platforms.
Cons: Book was released in 2016 so it would be interesting to compare this with what is happening now (as of 2023).
TLDR: If you’re curious about how analog media & infrastructure (CDs, vinyl records, print books, newspapers, brick and mortar stores) as well as analog interactions (learning, working, within the tech industry) is still relevant and powerful now, this book might be a good way to get some contrarian ideas.
Thanks to BookXcess for this book.
You can get your copy here (and save 77% off the recommended retail price: https://www.bookxcess.com/products/the-revenge-of-analog-real-things-and-why-they-matter?_pos=1&_psq=the+revenge+of+analo&_ss=e&_v=1.0
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