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Posts Tagged ‘technology’

On humanity….

January 19, 2014 Leave a comment

Bernard Moitessier set out to on the first race sailing single handed, non stop around the globe.  It is most likely that he would have won the race if he had not, upon reaching the Atlantic, forfeited the race and turned South to head back around again.

Mooring in Tahiti and watching the development of the island, he writes:

          Lots of people believe that the bulldozer and the concrete mixer don’t think.  They’re wrong: they do think.  They think that if they don’t have any work to do, they won’t earn any money, and then their slaves won’t be able to buy the fuel and oil they need to go  on living and go on thinking serious thoughs.
          They think human beings are pretty retarded, still making their babies in joy and love and pain.  Their procreation technique is much more efficient: they work flat out without ever getting tired, and taht means profits, and their slaves hurry to make more bulldozers and concrete mixers which are born fully grown, ready to work without wasting a minute.  And what they think really had is they had better hurry up and get the robot age going before man catches on.                                                                                            (The Long Way, 1971)

Who runs whom?  Do we run our technology? Or does our technology run us?

Metric echoes this idea in “Handshakes”:
Buy this car to drive to work
Drive to work to pay for this car

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Einstein come true

December 19, 2012 Leave a comment

Albert Einstein.  Undisputed visionary.

“I fear the day when the technology overlaps with our humanity. The world will only have a generation of idiots.”

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Time won’t save your soul

November 13, 2010 Leave a comment

Time:  Flying, racing, buying, saving, making, wasting, and the murderous killing.

Much of our life and attention seems devoted to this construct of Time.  The sage, watchdog figure of Father Time meticulously monitoring the spilling sands in the hourglass of life, until the last grain has tumbled.  Life oft seems spent in a frenetic scramble to preserve this most valuable of commodities.

But is Time a worthwhile concern?  Much of Western culture has been shaped around this preoccupation with time.   Complex methods and devices have been devised by which to preserve our precious time.  But how much extra time do these wonders create?  Shouldn’t it then seem, given all the gadgetry, that there is an abundance of time to do with what we want?

How much time is spent cajoling the very technology meant to ease time constraints into doing what we ask?  Has paper and pencil ever refused to release to you your own essay moments before it’s due?

Categories: Musings Tags: ,

Living breathing technology

September 26, 2010 Leave a comment

I was watching yet another fascinating lecture from the TED lecture series about technology and devices that seek to enrich our lives by being more interactive and ‘hands on’ so to speak.  This lecture expounded new technology that integrates more touch sensation into the devices we use, such as phones.
One of the aspects that was explored was to give phones a pulse, more or less.  To make them more like living things that actually have a heartbeat and a breathing rate.  Thus the user can feel, without looking, the needs of the phone. Or rather, the phone can communicate how it is doing to the user via touch sensation.

Does any one remember the Tamagotchi craze that swept through years ago, whereby people owned electronic pets?  Wouldn’t the phones with pulses be something akin to this creation, only more involved?

Yes this is cool technology, and probably has some really useful applications.  But do we need a technology that further commands our attention?  Isn’t the constant interruption of communication with real and animate people enough?  Do I really need a phone that further requires my attention and assistance?  Isn’t that the opposite of how that relationship is supposed to work?  Don’t I have a phone to help me, rather than me being there to help my phone?

http://video.ted.com/assets/player/swf/EmbedPlayer.swf

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