Is Technology Making Our Lives Richer Or Poorer? A conversation between Nicholas Thompson, a senior editor covering technology for the New Yorker, and computing pioneer Jaron Lanier. They’ll discuss the virtues of technology, but also the ways it has made us less imaginative, more distracted, and less connected to other people. Lanier is one of the founders of “virtual reality,” but he has since become the most prominent critic of what technology has wrought. Last year, he published “You Are Not a Gadget: A Manifesto,” a provocative critique of digital technologies, including Wikipedia (which he called a triumph of “intellectual mob rule”) and social-networking sites like Facebook and Twitter, which Lanier has described as dehumanizing and designed to encourage shallow interactions.
Have you ever jaywalked, exceeded the speed limit, lingered in a parking space beyond the time you paid for or broken rules in a minor way? Would you want to pay for these infractions? When everything is connected, nothing can be hidden, particularly when exposure translates into revenue for government agencies, businesses or entrepreneurs. Would an insurance company pay to know if its health insurance clients keep only unhealthy food in their refrigerators, so it could mitigate a higher risk of health problems with higher premiums? Count on it. This is the world the Internet of Things makes possible.
Really good points here. Makes me worried ;(
A simple example, he suggested, could involve the emerging “second screen” trend, in which spectators watch the main action in person or on a TV while also browsing supplementary information on a laptop, tablet or smartphone. Raw data collected from sensors could be routed through Hadoop or some other system designed to make the content useful, and then delivered almost instantly, and perhaps in a personalized form, to the viewer.
Gerd adds: this strikes me as rather bizarre, somehow - are robots playing baseball next?
Consider the opposite of augmented reality: “deletive reality.” If pedestrians in New York or Mumbai don’t want to see homeless people, they could delete them from view in real-time. This not only diminishes the diversity of reality; it also blocks us from developing empathy.
Welcome to the Hybrid Age by Ayesha Khanna and Parag Khanna. For reference. (via betaknowledge)
// brave new world
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