I recently read the headline of an article from Wired Magazine, “Google’s Grand Plan to Make Your Brain Irrelevant.”1 Though i chose not to read the article before writing this post so that i could have a fresh perspective to give feedback, from what i have read in previous articles and heard of the plan of Google to develop artificial intelligence my curiosity is piqued. A thought that comes to me in the midst of it all is that we are about to experience some societal shifts that many people are not ready for. Being continually plugged in to media has become a norm for many people but what does this continual connection to technology implicate and how is it really affecting us?
We have become a society of information and content consumers here in America. The demand for constant information and new content is ceaseless and as more content is produced, artificial intelligence that is being developed has more data to weigh and use to learn more about our lives and habit patterns.
I recently went to a talk at WordCamp Phoenix that spoke about “WordPress & The Internet of Things”2 . I am still in the midst of gathering more information about the internet of things but in my perspective most of us are oblivious to the radical changes that our society will experience. The Internet of Things 3 will bring about such massive paradigm shifts of what parts technology should play in life that it will initially be overwhelming to most. We have seen these things in movies to a degree but when it comes right down to how it will play out in life there will be a need for much more than an awareness of the technology. There will arise the need for each of us to know the ins, outs & hows of the technology. There will more than likely arise the need for new legislation to govern what “The minds behind the minds” are able to program into their creations.
Aside from the possibility of new legislation to come with the advent of this technology, a primary concern I think of is how dependent most have become upon technology in general. I am guilty of this. I mean, what would most of us do without google maps or some sort of map application? Swing the clock back 15 – 20 years and most people actually possessed in their tool-belt the skill of map reading and owned several paper maps. Look at us today and you see the exact opposite. Our maps are abstract & so are our notebooks, books and bibles and tablets ( No pun intended). We lack physical representations for much of the information in our lives. The advent of the printing press brought about revolution in that it put into the hands of the common people power that the nobles dared not to give them. One thing that I can see as a possibility with advent of the internet and the cloud is that it removes from our hands the power that the printing presses gave and puts it back into the hands of our overlords of the cloud.
The other thing we must remember in the midst of every technological advance and new product released is that behind that automated brain there will ever be the brain that actually created it. We must carefully distinguish between using the technology for our personal enjoyment and advancement and becoming crippled by dependence upon it.
- Google’s Grand Plan to Make Your Brain Irrelevant [↩]
- WordPress & the Internet of things [↩]
- The Internet of Things [↩]