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Old 11-29-2012, 12:35 PM
Location: On the "Left Coast", somewhere in "the Land of Fruits & Nuts"
8,367 posts, read 8,306,608 times
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Not quite sure whether this belongs more in Philosophy or some such, but perhaps asking the most tech-savvy folks here, might be a good place to start.

Increasingly it's been pointed out that from developing an opposable thumb and walking upright, to using fire, the wheel, language,and even agriculture which led to the rise of cities, human evolution itself has been invented by technology, as much as we have invented it.

And in a similar vein, in WHAT TECHNOLOGY WANTS, Wired cofounder Kevin Kelly makes the case that technology has its own internal logics and rhythms that are distinct from (and sometimes adverse to) the desires of the humans that create it. In Kelly's view, Technology creates itself, using humans to do its bidding, while our normal view of inventors creating technology is a kind of romantic fairy tale that ignores the fact that nearly every great invention is invented nearly simultaneously by many people at the same time, all over the world.

So, do you think technology is an independent driving force in our very evolution (for better or worse), and has it significantly changed the way your own life or personality has developed?
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Old 11-29-2012, 01:15 PM
Location: Portsmouth, VA
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Yes, technology is driving our evolution. I believe that humans overall, at least in the industrialized countries, have grown softer and less able to survive in, what for lack of a better term, I will call the "natural" world. Understand though that I believe that humans are part of nature as well and that what we do is as natural for us as building dams is for the beaver. There are areas though in which our technology may be leading to our eventual extinction as a species. Healthcare, for example. Our technological prowess has brought us to a point at which we can and do enable those who in an earlier time would have died without progeny or with few progeny, to live and reproduce. This means there is less culling taking place through natural selection. Not that I am an advocate of eugenic legislation or deliberate culling through sterilization or killing off the "weaker" specimens, however you choose to define that. I most assuredly am not. It is only an observation of which I take note. I am less inclined to view our advancements in weapons technology as something which will lead to our extinction than many others might be. Many of those technologies are of use in our push out into space, and that bodes well for humanity's future. Our current beginning in inhabiting space off the home planet signifies the possibillity that we will survive far into the future when the Sun is no longer able to sustain life in our solar system.
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