Used to be, it was hard to find stuff out, especially in a hurry. Now Google makes it so easy to find stuff out in a hurry that I often feel like Trinity in that scene in The Matrix where she barks:
Tank, I need a pilot program for a B-212 1 helicopter.As a matter of fact, it is now possible to find out so much stuff so quickly that I found myself today imagining this alternate version of the scene:
Trinity: Tank, I need a pilot program for a B-212 helicopter. While you're at it, give me wind turbulence at 4th and 32nd, altitude 73 meters. Also calculate shear produced by a gatling gun firing continuously from the helicopter's bay. And run a simulation of Neo and Morpheus hanging from 3.5cm braided cable, I need to know if that cable will hold. Oh, and don't forget to factor in the rate of fuel loss with a couple of bullet holes in the fuel tank. Let's see, what else...
(Agent Smith's hands close around Trinity's neck.)
Trinity: Urp, gurgle.
Don't get me wrong. Too much information is a good problem to have. Beats the hell out of not being able to call Tank and download the pilot program. But it does create an interesting new dilemma. If you like to be well-informed, as I do, it's getting harder than ever to draw the line and say: "Enough research, time to act."
1 Also variously reported on Web pages as: V-212, M-109...
Former URL: http://weblog.infoworld.com/udell/2003/08/07.html#a771