Wednesday, April 22, 2015

Why should we dare more technology-optimism [column] – t3n Magazine

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If the Internet and new technologies is talk today think that many of mass surveillance dying inner cities or the decline of the traditional newspaper journalism. We need to solve the most urgent problems of humanity the technology – and enthusiasm for it. The new ground-column by Stephan Dörner.

Fear unknown and loss of control

It must have been in the 1980s, when, especially in Western Europe the ability or the will has been lost to dream of technical utopias sometime. It was the wedding of the anti-nuclear movement and the Greens decided Computer basically to fight until their social harmlessness is clearly demonstrated.

The 80s: Have we then lost faith in the controllability of technology. (Photo: quapan /, License: CC-BY)

Somehow we have as a society, then lost the belief in the possibility of shaping and controllability of technology – instead ruled the fear of the unknown and loss of control. The fear was understandable timer: the terrible threat of possible nuclear holocaust of nuclear weapons, but also the Chernobyl nuclear disaster in the peaceful uses of nuclear energy. But the first horror visions of a state total surveillance with computers fall into this era

technological optimism is since, however, not completely extinct -. He prevails today, especially where the improvement of daily life through technology are tangible and obvious – for example, in Ghana. “From the government to agencies of development cooperation, many see particularly in internet start-ups a motor for the country’s future,” writes, for example, the Huffington Post.

” In terms of global prosperity, security and health was in 2014 one of the best years of history “

In fact, there is some evidence that optimism -. thanks to long-term trends, which therefore rarely large headlines: The world hunger decreases constant, just as the medical care improved further. In the past 25 years, the infant mortality rate has been halved and that this trend is not in sight. Despite IS, Boko Haram, Middle East and Ukraine conflict we probably live in total in the most peaceful time since the beginning of human history. In all Western countries, the crime has been declining since the 1990s – particularly violent crime. Meanwhile, it is as low as never before since the beginning of reliable crime statistics in the United States – and probably as low as never before.

And even the poorest of the poor in the world bring the prosperity – despite the overall increase in inequality of wealth. After initially hundreds of millions of people have escaped poverty in Southeast Asia, now also have the most economies in sub-Saharan consistently high growth rates. Nigeria is on the way to Africa’s first one-trillion-dollar economy. Even though it has probably felt thanks to negative headlines for the least so – in relation to global prosperity, security and health was in 2014 one of the best years of human history

technology not only creates problems, it also offers the. solution

 Today, in principle, everyone is in a position to even the m & # XE4;. chtigen secret shut out the world
Today in principle everyone is able to shut out the powerful intelligence of the world itself.

The advances in technology have mankind so far not led to the abyss – quite the contrary. The Germans will still rumored a tendency to pessimism – especially when it comes to technical innovations. And the revelations about the comprehensive monitoring of the Internet by Snowden documents seem this setting, even to give law

It is forgotten. With modern free Kryptografieprogramme as GnuPG is now basically anyone with a standard PC in the able to shut out the powerful intelligence of the world itself – at least if you are not so important goal themselves that they create it directly to a complex and expensive compromising your own computer

“This means that the technological revolution also reflected in positive effects, it always needs the corresponding visions.”

Technology also has a problem not only created, but also provides the same the solution. And this is in other areas like: technical progress of industrialization and motorization has raised major environmental problems – and currently the only realistic translucent solution of the problem lies in new technologies such as environmentally friendly energy and electric cars.

We can thereby be pretty sure that the technology progresses – at least teach the past few centuries. Thus, the ongoing technological revolution but also reflected in positive impact on society, it always needs the corresponding visions. Thought leaders like Steve Jobs and Steve Wozniak, who were among the first to believe that every household would need a PC or Elan Musk, the fact believed to be one of the first that pure electric cars stand before the breakthrough to the mass market – and fun too must

Between feasibility delusion and technology pessimism

For the big challenges of the 21st century, we need technology and visions -. implement their positive plans and that is also a passion for technology, supports the visionaries here, , Currently my art seems to be the most realistic solution for the greatest threats to mankind:

  • The replacement of fossil fuels with renewable energy, smart grids and advanced energy storage
  • The complete electrification. of individual traffic.
  • The fight against poverty through better and cheaper access to education, healthcare, the further improvement of living standards around the world.
  • The technically existing encryption to prevent the all-encompassing surveillance is already available. Now this would not be so user-friendly that it is suitable for mass production.

We can thereby not fall back into the naive technological optimism and feasibility mania of the 1960s than it is to give a technical solution for every problem appeared and every innovation was embraced uncritically uncritically and without consideration of the risks. But the chances of art to sacrifice one in Germany, unfortunately, often dominant technology pessimism is no less dangerous. In order to avert the threat of global environmental catastrophe by the man-made climate change, technology is probably the central key element without too much wealth is sacrificed – so ultimately the only realistic because global political enforceable solution

 technology creates problems, but as the electric car it also offers L & # XF6; measurements (Picture: Tesla).
Technology creates problems, like the electric car but it also offers solutions , (Picture: Tesla)

However, technology has neither soul nor morality. It can be used for warfare as well as the networking of humanity or medical advances. Therefore, the political and social will to design plays such an important role here. Business intelligence and it is certainly not lacking in ideas to use the ever-improving algorithms for their purposes.

This makes it all that we as a society develop visions of how technology can improve society is more important. A piece of enthusiasm for technology is called for.

Additional columns from “new territory” can be found here.


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