Reading Response #1
What is your initial response to the argument that we should all know how to code?
Although I think this is a tall order, especially given that a majority of humanity has no major care for the understanding of coding and programming, I do believe the assertion is correct. Not understanding the language of a technology that is beginning to dictate our social behaviors could spell disaster for the human race. The historic examples of human participation on the output side of technology is compelling (we don’t write, we read; we don’t make TV, we watch it).
What is in the space between these polar notions (program OR be programmed)?
The power of personal judgement and awareness. A human’s ability to disengage from an imbalanced and poorly conceived system or program. Just because a person cannot communicate to machines through programming doesn’t mean their reaction (or nonreaction) to the program presented is not vital.
How should we alter our education system to account for Rushkoff’s (or your) proposed future?
Introductions to technology should begin with physical manufacturing and software manipulation. Kids and adults alike today simply accept the glowing screens and apps in front of them with no understanding of how they came to be. If students had to build their own PCs and phones from basic components and implement open source programs to facilitate their education, these tools would be understood as such, and not magic machines that dictate our lives.
What is your initial response to the “Brave New World” that the author discusses?
Eerily frightening, as if the human element has been removed from everyday activity. We have free will to change our habits, the way we think and act. As these smart solutions become implemented, I get the sense that people will be more apt to stay locked into their own highly customized realities and become dependent on large tech corporations to identify moral imperatives.
What are some recent technological advances that suggest this is the future we are heading towards?
Any and all apps measuring your daily “achievements”. Fit-Bits, smart phone apps to sense your quality of sleep and chips to measure your driving habits that communicate with insurance companies. GPS tracking has become prevalent in most new apps, prompting users to constantly inform whomever about their habits and whereabouts.
Who is embracing this future and why? Who is not and why?
Who is: My guess is anyone working and profiting from the tech industries that are shifting to a more philanthropic focus. Profitability can alter people’s belief systems rapidly. The working class Baby Boomer generation who has become accustomed to technology that increasingly makes life more convenient and practical. Users of technology with no programming or networking knowledge. Newer generations being born into the internet-age and the normalcy of sharing each other’s personal information.
Who is Not: Programmers because of their basic understanding of operational tendencies. Non-users and disengaged fragments of modern society more interested in holistic practices.