Last week discussed how we can use our cognitive surplus to make the world (and the web) a better place. The more we connect and share, and the greater the diversity of those who do, the more ‘the machine’ becomes representative of humanity – no longer a mere tool, but an extension of ourselves. But do we lose something in the process?
Sherry Turkle: is a psychologist and sociologist known as “the Margaret Mead of digital culture. She is a professor in the Program in Science, Technology and Society at MIT and the founder and director of the MIT Initiative on Technology and Self. Since the publication of her path-breaking book, The Second Self: Computers and The Human Spirit in 1984, Turkle has been studying how technology changes not only what we do, but who we are. Today she has turned her attention to the world of social media and sociable robots. As she puts it, these are technologies that propose themselves “as the architect of our intimacies.”
What technology makes easy is not always what nurtures the human spirit. – Sherry Turkle
Thoughts & Questions for Discussion
• As we expect more from technology, do we expect less from each other?
• What’s so terribly wrong with never being alone?
• Has ubiquitous technology done younger generations a disservice?
• Doesn’t the good in digital technology outweigh the side-effects?
• Will we eventually turn to robots for companionship as Turkle suggests?
• Are we already there? https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=3N1Q8oFpX1Y
• Does anything about the family interactions with JIBO disturb you?
• Do you agree that there’s still “time for us to reconsider how we use it, how we build it”?
I’m not suggesting that we turn away from our devices, just that we develop a more self-aware relationship with them, with each other and with ourselves. – Sherry Turkle