Communication and It’s Impact on Metabolism of a City

R.D. McKenzie points out that "many communities have passed through swift successive cycles of growth or decline, the determining factors being changes in forms and routes of transportation and communication and the rise of new industries." Although a conjecture of cause and effect, McKenzie makes a point applicable to the state of today's cities in the United States. Detroit, once the epicenter of the automotive industry, has become a ghost town through the shift of economic powers in the global market in just a couple decades. With the advent and growth of digital technology, the velocity of communication has increased exponentially. Smartphone "apps" have redesigned the way we approach the city for better or for worse. The stranger's path is no longer one experienced through physical attractions, word-of-mouth, and transportation infrastructure, but by Yelp and Instagram. Do these technologies have the potential to be the "determining factors" in the rise and fall of cities in the near or far future?