Monday, October 6, 2008

If Nancy Drew had technology...

With all of the rain that we had recently, I decided to peruse my shelves for an interesting book to read. As I glanced through a collection of popular titles, I stopped carefully to review a memorable copy of Nancy Drew's "Hidden Staircase". Published in the 1930s, her books were the highlight of my childhood. I remember collecting and reading almost all of the original Nancy Drew mystery collection and being enticed by her ability to solve crimes so easily. They were exciting journeys into the unknown and her talent to problem solve, think critically, and act analytically as a high school student amazed me. I began to think that if Nancy had technology at her fingertips, to assist her in solving her crimes, would her stories be so interesting? Would technology take the place of her investigation techniques? Would she find herself in trouble and experience dangerous moments that went along with the scenes of the crime? Probably not. In the 21st Century, I imagine Nancy sitting in an office with a computer by her side performing digitally, all of the duties that she once did manually. She would finally have some help in her quest for the truth.

Nancy Drew solved mysteries on her own with very little help from technology. She was a young teen who was brave, inquisitive and relentless. She wasn't afraid to venture out and ask questions, research issues and solve problems. She did it the hard way. She relied on clues and hunches, motives and evidence. Nancy Drew books are now a collector's item; a fascinating read, but outdated in practice. Today's sleuth's have an advantage with all of the latest technology resources available. If Nancy were around today, her older methods of solving crime would be rarely used. Nancy would now need to gain the necessary skills to compete in a technology saturated world. Her "hidden staircase" would no longer be hidden from view. With technology, the mysterious stairs would be revealed much earlier on in the case.

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