While reviewing James Gleick’s new book, The Information, Nick Carr warns that the "danger in taking a mathematical view of information, with its stress on maximizing the speed of communication, is that it encourages us to value efficiency over expressiveness, quantity over quality":

At a technology conference last year, Google’s outgoing CEO Eric Schmidt tried to put our current “information explosion” into historical perspective. Today, he said, we create as much information in 48 hoursfive billion gigabytes worthas was created “between the birth of the world and 2003.” It’s an astonishing comparison, and it seems to illuminate something important about the times we live in. But the harder you look at Schmidt’s numbers, the fuzzier they become. What does it mean to create information? When we measure information, what exactly are we measuring? What the heck is “information,” anyway?

We want to hear what you think about this article. Submit a letter to the editor or write to letters@theatlantic.com.