Tuesday, January 15, 2013

Reconciling Technological Progress with Dystopian Fantasies

I find it difficult to reconcile the view of those who believe that a violent revolution is coming in the West (Google) with how enabling and empowering technology is becoming - John Maeda (via SwissMiss):

As organizations shift from neatly ordered hierarchies to chaotic, flattened “heterarchies,” where anyone can “friend the CEO,” a new generation of tools will be invented that will allow design and technology to enable leaders to make true connections among people and inspire change.

Just as design enabled us to have an emotional connection with a piece of glass and aluminum that lives in our pocket, design and technology together will restore some of the humanity in what it means to lead in the 21st century
While technology may fuel the separation in absolute numbers between the wealthiest and poorest, does this really matter if technology also provides the bridge and the ability to move between economic classes? From the WSJ:
Mr. Diamandis said that the gap between the wealthiest and the poorest people may well increase, but that the definition of poverty will keep changing, much as it has over the last 100 years. He noted that 99% of the poorest people in the U.S. have amenities that the wealthiest people of 100 years ago couldn’t imagine. “It’s not about creating a world of luxury, but of creating a world of possibility,” he said. “I think it’s an amazing world,” Mr. Diamandis said.

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