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Luddite

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Re: Luddite

Postby Philip Hudson » Sun Oct 13, 2013 2:46 am

I walk a fine line between Luddite and technologist. The rate of change in technological advance is phenomenal. I see the present states of technologies I helped create in the 1960s and am amazed. Who would a thunk it?

All advance should be measured enough to discover and guard against its consequences. Separating gold from ore in the 1800s was done innovatively by using mercury to entrap the gold. Today we have to watch our intake of Albacore tuna because the forty-niners lost so much mercury into the oceans.

Presently, the use of drones with intelligence payloads, a program I contributed to in the 1980s, is producing a big controversy about privacy and the actual need for such surveillance in a civilian society. Orwell's book "1984" warned that technological advance might someday change the very nature of what it means to be human.
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Re: Luddite

Postby Perry Lassiter » Sun Oct 13, 2013 2:40 pm

The law of unintended consequences. The tough part is those consequences are not only unintended they are unforeseen!
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Re: Luddite

Postby MTC » Sun Oct 13, 2013 3:51 pm

Philip, here is a link to a short article on the impact of the cell phone which addresses your point somewhat:

http://www.ehow.com/list_7773084_sociol ... phone.html

If we human beings are defined in part by our social interactions, then from this standpoint alone just one item of technology--the cell phone-- has had a significant impact. Measured against the expectations of previous generations is the current generation less "human" as a result of the cellphone, or is there simply a new norm?
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Re: Luddite

Postby Slava » Sun Oct 13, 2013 4:07 pm

The Economist has a piece on "Learned Luddites." That's what they have decided to label professors who aren't all that enamored of MOOCs and other such on-line courses.

http://www.economist.com/news/united-st ... d-luddites
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Re: Luddite

Postby bamaboy56 » Sun Oct 13, 2013 11:32 pm

I'm definitely not a Luddite, although neither am I adept on all the latest technology. I use email and text a lot. I'm writing this post on a laptop. The cell phone I use allows me to make a phone call and text people and that's all. I don't have a SmartPhone (nor do I want/need one) because I have no need to have the internet in my pocket. I've recently come in contact with several people at work who can't use a keyboard and in most cases even need help in turning a computer on. Anymore, being unable to type or use a computer is akin to being illiterate. Sad but true.
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Re: Luddite

Postby call_copse » Mon Oct 14, 2013 6:52 am

I guess one thing that strikes me from going through this thread again after some thought, is that almost any position can be viewed as Luddite - depending on how you cast your interpretation thereof. We can take a view of Luddites as being progressive or regressive, depending on whether you take the principal point to be resistance to either technological progress, or excessive exploitation.

I'll agree that anyone here would be hard to really place fully in the Luddite camp. For myself I am the same as anyone in that I pick and choose what is useful or pleasing to me. Facebook or Twitter not at all. A smart phone I cannot resist - I amuse many people by asking my phone questions out loud if there is a point of factual debate in a conversation. The killer is being able to find definitions for any new words I encounter at any point in time - this often leads to a further exploration of concepts on my phone. Also, I can listen, legally, to any music I can conceive of at an point in time through my most excellent streaming service, Spotify, which is a far cry from tapes on Walkmans - I don't even consider maintaining a music library nowadays as I can listen to anything anywhere.
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Re: Luddite

Postby Philip Hudson » Mon Oct 14, 2013 11:20 pm

I have been told there is a study being done concerning Facebook. Some psychologists are worrying that a Facebooker may be creating an aggrandized personal image, one she/he cannot possibly live up to. It has been suggest that Facebook may need to post a warning that use of it could be dangerous to one's health. A true Luddite would want to outlaw Facebook. I use Facebook in a very safe and sane manner. My wife is “on” Facebook and I look and listen in on occasion. I haven't noticed any aberrant behavior in my wife since she started posting on Facebook.

One might warn Agorans of a similar danger. Since I pop back and forth between an Agora posting and Google, I can sound pretty erudite. But that ain't the real me.
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Re: Luddite

Postby MTC » Tue Oct 15, 2013 3:47 am

Philip Hudson wrote:I have been told there is a study being done concerning Facebook. Some psychologists are worrying that a Facebooker may be creating an aggrandized personal image, one she/he cannot possibly live up to. It has been suggest that Facebook may need to post a warning that use of it could be dangerous to one's health.


Here's a link to an article on point:

While social networking doesn’t yet merit a Surgeon General’s warning, Rosen told an audience at the American Psychological Association’s annual meeting that Facebook has an adverse effect on both mind and body. Its use is associated with narcissism, antisocial behavior, mania, and aggressive tendencies. Regular overdoses lead to anxiety and depression, loss of concentration, poor grades, and alcohol abuse. And if that’s not bad enough, there’s also too much information online, which leads to sleep disorders and carpal tunnel syndrome. See www.illinois.edu/blog/view/25/57626
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Re: Luddite

Postby Perry Lassiter » Tue Oct 15, 2013 12:12 pm

I like people. I like staying in touch with people. I like finding out what is happening the people since I last saw them, perhaps 20 or even 30 years ago. Facebook and other media do this for me. As I mentioned before, through texting I have reestablished communication with several friends through texting who primarily communicate that way.

On the agora I have "met" all of you guys, only one of whom I have met in person. Far from isolating me in an unsocial situation, the Internet, including Facebook, has connected me to all kinds of people that I was even unaware existed. Neither has it reduced my real life encounters. I still meet and relate to friends in all kinds of social situations.
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Re: Luddite

Postby Philip Hudson » Tue Oct 15, 2013 12:24 pm

That was a great testimony, Perry. You could have ended it with a "So there!"
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Re: Luddite

Postby bamaboy56 » Wed Oct 16, 2013 4:19 pm

All things in moderation, my friends -- except, of course, the agora to which we can indulge to our heart's content. HA! :D
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