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Future Shock and the Tech Superpowers

Future Shock and the Tech Superpowers

Future Shock author Alvin Toffler died recently, and fyi, future shock is a reference to "too much change in too short a period of time." …Toffler argued that society is undergoing an enormous structural change, a revolution from an industrial society to a "super-industrial society". This change overwhelms people. He believed the accelerated rate of technological and social change left people disconnected and suffering from "shattering stress and disorientation"—future shocked. Toffler stated that the majority of social problems are symptoms of future shock. In his discussion of the components of such shock, he popularized the term "information overload."

The events of the past weeks – the two incidents of police shooting, the shootings of police officers and the protests that erupted – gave us pause to reflect on Toffler and his predictions, as well as technology’s role in the events. We read a piece not too long ago that contended that, with the population shifts of people to metropolitan areas, that super metropolises/city states would be the major political forces in the not too distant future, but we contend instead that the tech superpowers – the Googles and Facebooks and various social networks – are fast becoming the major forces and vehicles for selectively disseminating information. While we are certainly not a proponent of governmental oversight, we might suggest that, at this juncture, before they become even more powerful and potentially even more manipulative, lest we forget that Mark Zuckerberg assured Angela Merkel (not realizing that he was on an open mike) that Facebook was indeed capable of suppress speech – selectively – and even more recently joked that Facebook could affect elections by announcing that they were being postponed – and that people would believe him, which gives you an idea of how powerful he believes he is - and how dumb he thinks the average Facebook user is, and for all we know, he may be right. Frightening, that someone so seemingly bereft of moral character is in control of such a large portion of the planet’s population and at the risk of repeating ourselves, Facebook's Filter Bubble Is Getting Worse.

Facebook has even hypothesized how they could control the 2016 elections. Read More...

The Payback is a Bitch Edition

The Payback is a Bitch Edition

First, a must-read: Tech’s Enduring Great-Man Myth.

As promised, no editorial this week due to the holidays, but rust and tech – and hubris, it seems – never rests, and given the increasing amount of connectedness/surveillance/ control of which tech is capable, and with governments at the table and in the code, fyi:

Google My Activity shows everything that company knows about its users ­ and there’s a lot Read More...

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