Information Overload is like Drinking from a Firehose

Blogger and author J Wynia came up with a great analogy for how we are constantly bombarded with such a wealth of information that we often drown in it. He is writing a book entitled “Drinking From the Firehose” about how to deal with the daily deluge of email, mailing lists, SPAM and RSS feeds.

J also has a novel approach to resolving the dispute over whether a glass is half full or half empty. It takes an open mind to come up with this stuff.

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4 responses to “Information Overload is like Drinking from a Firehose

  1. I think the analogy of “drinking from a fire hose” goes back to David Shenk who used it in his book “Data Smog”. Although rather old still a nice read.

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  3. drinking from a firehose has been an analogy for the tough courses at MIT since at least the seventies, perhaps much much earlier.

  4. I know Mitch Kapor has also been attributed with the quote ““Getting information off the Internet is like taking a drink from a fire hydrant.”

    Not sure whether that predates David Shenk’s use of a similar phrase in his book. Obviously, it doesn’t predate the alternate usage of the phrase at MIT suggested by Chris.

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