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Thursday, May 06, 2010

Things We'd Be Better Off Without

The Washington Post recently asked “a dozen writers, thinkers and doers to each suggest one thing we'd all be better off without.”  The results, which range from fine print to lawns to the Congressional Budget Office, are here.  Having given the matter a full ten minutes’ worth of thought (that’s how one does it in the Internet age, right?), I’ve concluded primarily that I am well on my way to being a grumpy old man.  There are lots of things that we didn’t have back in the day that I’d be perfectly content to do without now.

But if I had to pick one thing that I think we’d be better off without – and whether we’d like to define the topic as being limited to within law schools or more generally – I’m going with wi-fi.  Within law schools for all the familiar reasons.  More generally on the grounds that I find the various cases against the effectiveness of multi-tasking and in favor of the proposition that Google is making us stupid to be compelling.  And the ubiquity of wi-fi just makes it that much harder to get away from the Internet.  Can't do it at the library, can't do it at the coffee shop, and can't often work at either without my laptop.  One of the best discoveries I’ve made over the past year is this program for keeping my computer offline.  I find it not the slightest bit ironic that it’s called Freedom.  Now if I can just muster up the willpower to make consistent use of it ...

So what say you Prawfesoriate?  What else would we be better off without?

Posted by Chad Oldfather on May 6, 2010 at 04:34 PM | Permalink


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The Blue Book.

And proprietary compilations of law documents, but just getting rid of the dumbest, least-internally-consistent, least-adaptable-to-change citation system among the major scholarly citation systems would be a darned good start.

Posted by: C.E. Petit | May 7, 2010 12:07:16 PM

Those little Styrofoam peanut things.

Posted by: Alex Long | May 7, 2010 8:22:47 AM

If you're laptop is like mine, it has a switch on the side of it that disables the WiFi radio. I suggest that you flip it and then tear the slider off with a screwdriver! ;)

Posted by: billb | May 6, 2010 5:41:31 PM

I nominate all of the things mentioned in this Monty Python skit: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=13JK5kChbRw

Posted by: Bruce Boyden | May 6, 2010 5:03:41 PM

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