The future of tech, and people

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O Really
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Re: The future of tech, and people

Unread post by O Really » Mon Oct 06, 2014 5:55 pm

Sure, automation turns skilled workers into computer operators. And sure, reliance on tech makes one dependent on the tech. I'll bet somebody has written this same article every year or so since the first one when it was argued that using a wheel would erode cart-dragging skills. Could we argue that most in the US are dependent on the technology of matches and propane lighters and have lost the skill of firestarting? Should firestarting with flint/steel or rubbing wood be taught in schools for anyone not selected to be on "Survivor?" I'll bet most farmers who bought tractors became less skilled at mule-driving. Probably even sold their mules, and became dependent on the equipment.

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Re: The future of tech, and people

Unread post by JTA » Mon Oct 06, 2014 8:36 pm

Technology is my job. The stuff I work on automates a lot of jobs for a lot of companies in many different industries. I think automation is going to be a major obstacle in the coming years. You can do a lot with software that makes a lot of jobs/knowledge redundant, even formerly "safe" white-collar type jobs (so says some article I read, I'll see if I can dig it up).
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O Really
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Re: The future of tech, and people

Unread post by O Really » Mon Oct 06, 2014 10:22 pm

Tech has made major changes in the practice of law. For example, it once took a long time and a good bit of knowledge to "Shepardize" a case http://legal-dictionary.thefreedictiona ... Shepardize Now it's a click, that can be done by a paralegal. Nobody dictates anymore (except the name partners to everybody else) Research has been totally revolutionized. Even the concept of "practicing law" has been changed. Auto-forms, DIY websites, Westlaw, Nexis-Lexis, yada. But when the client is in deep shit, s/he doesn't care what tools are used, only what the lawyer can do to help.

All I'm saying is that change or being changed has always been feared and presented as a falling sky. Jobs are created; jobs become obsolete. New tools get developed. A fairly high percentage of jobs available today didn't even exist 25 years ago, maybe not even JTA's and Banni's. The list of jobs that have gone away, tech or not tech, is long, yet for some reason "chimney sweep" is still a job in much the same costume.

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Re: The future of tech, and people

Unread post by JTA » Tue Oct 07, 2014 6:22 pm

Vrede wrote:Of course there are advantages and I know that there's no slowing down or going back. However, I still worry that my niece and nephew will never learn how to read a map or navigate in the woods based on non-electronic clues. Their first and usually only resort is, "What does the GPS say?" It was like pulling teeth in Barcelona to pry the niece and her friend away from their devices to go outside and do anything.
Yeah I know what you mean. There have been a few times when we've gone out with some people they'll be looking at their phones the whole damn time texting or whatever. I always have to tell people to get off their computers.

I also don't like being connected 24/7. Not only do some people at work expect you to be connected to email, but we have an instant messenger program at work we use that you can now install on your smart phone so people can instant message you too! Hell no. I still refuse out of principle to setup my work email on my phone. If I feel I need to check it I'll log in and check it manually. I don't want my phone buzzing every time I receive an email, whether it's directed to me or not. Same when I go on vacation.

But back to the topic of technology... navigating the woods without GPS (technology) isn't a skill that's necessarily important nowadays many would argue, but what makes something like that important? In my opinion, understanding things without the aid of technology is still important because it helps you understand of the world outside of the veil of technology. I mean yeah, you can also break the world down into small, quantifiable, component parts, and gain better scientific knowledge of the world that way through means of technology, but that's different. For me, as a person here and now, in this woods, at this particular time of the year, knowing this tree or that rock is composed of atoms and what not is not relevant to the here and now of how I experience something as-is. When you view the world only through the veil of technology, you risk seeing the world and everything in it only as a means to an end (a woods isn't a woods, it's a source of lumber. Getting lost in the woods isn't an adventure, it's a hindrance to you getting home and watching TV or playing on your phone).

It's kind of hard to explain, but something-something philosophy something-something art I guess.

:crazy:
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Re: The future of tech, and people

Unread post by O Really » Wed Oct 08, 2014 12:15 pm

Vrede wrote:I think there will always be value in basic skills, not just woods ones and not just if the tech meltdown occurs. There will be unpredictable consequences if the author is correct that "Computers are making us dumb".
I don't particularly agree that the author made that point very well. I have read, for example, that using a GPS all the time makes you less skilled at seat of the pants navigation, possibly making you less aware of landmarks or less observant. I don't doubt that, but I don't think that's getting "dumber." To say we're getting dumber, he'd have to show that it was not a matter of skills or habits lost, but of innate ability. I think that "old" skills could be learned as new, and that use of tech wouldn't hamper that learning. Heck, I bet you could learn to make fire with flint and steel with an online search. I bet you could learn to use a sextant or track animals in the woods.

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Re: The future of tech, and people

Unread post by O Really » Wed Oct 08, 2014 2:37 pm

OK, I could go along with that. But I still say that effect isn't limited to, and didn't start with, current tech. GPS is fundamentally no different from a really good map with somebody in the next seat to read it to you. I think the base of the problem is that a lot of people don't give any thought to what knowledge or skills they might need to be "competent" in their life. I am astounded to watch the first episode of a season of "Survivor" and see that a large percentage of the contestants can't make a fire. Haven't these people ever watched the show? Don't they know that as sure as Jeff is going to say "I'll tally the votes" that they're going to have to make fire? What sort of idiot applies (maybe many times), goes through the selection process, and gets picked for the show and doesn't take a crash course in all the stuff you know you're going to have to do - fire, shelter, food, fishing, yada. But then I look around and see how many people who live where the power is likely to go out from ice or hurricane that don't bother to buy a generator. Or don't bother to have their window boards already cut when the storm comes close. Or don't have a getaway bag packed for each member of the family in case they have to evacuate for whatever reason. I would contend that if people are getting "dumb" in the sense you expressed, that it's not the fault of the tech.

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Re: The future of tech, and people

Unread post by rstrong » Fri Oct 24, 2014 1:18 am


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Re: The future of tech, and people

Unread post by JTA » Fri Oct 24, 2014 6:04 pm

Vrede wrote:Why not if it's tech that has made them so complacent and has eliminated the need for so many skills you and I grew up using?

Somebody in the next seat to me that's actually able to read that really good map is becoming less likely.

There are all sorts of survival skills I lack. I'm hoping that I'll be able to trade on my healthcare skills if things get ugly. I'm not sure what lawyers will do. ;)

(Aside: I'm not even talking about the tin foil hat crash of civilization. In a localized disaster my smartest survival strategy will be to head to a hospital or aid station and start taking care of people. Odds are that someone will take care of my physical and security needs.)

I think the idea is that the rapidity and universality with which our own knowledge and skills are fading is the problem. The article talks about how pilots and doctors - not exactly wilderness survival professions - are becoming "dumber".
I've thought about this before. If something drastic did happen, my skill set would be utterly useless. Maybe I should learn to make candles or something, or crack the recipe to bud light and brew up batches of that since bud light would probably become currency here in SC.

Maybe I could just hoard bud light in my shed or bury some cases in my back yard. This would probably work since stale bud light that expired fifty years ago probably tastes the same as fresh bud light.
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Re: The future of tech, and people

Unread post by JTA » Fri Oct 24, 2014 6:07 pm

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Re: The future of tech, and people

Unread post by Mr.B » Fri Oct 31, 2014 10:15 pm

Vrede wrote:Computers are making us dumb: Nicholas Carr

"I see this at work and in my tech-heavy brother's family."
You see examples of this every day....people walking as if in a trance staring at their smartphones or tablets, oblivious of what's going on around them.....totally unaware when someone is speaking to them; "gotta update :wtf: my Facebook"
We've seen the videos of people walking into traffic, falling into mall fountains, etc...

Here's an example, posted here as well as in the "Just For Fun" thread:

An example of technology turning people into mindless zombies......



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Re: The future of tech, and people

Unread post by rstrong » Sat Dec 06, 2014 8:02 pm

Image

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Re: The future of tech, and people

Unread post by JTA » Sat Dec 06, 2014 9:14 pm

rstrong wrote:Image
:clap: :lol:
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Re: The future of tech, and people

Unread post by bannination » Sun Dec 28, 2014 7:29 pm

The future of tech, and people?

Image

http://www.bbc.com/news/technology-30290540 Stephen Hawking agrees.

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Re: The future of tech, and people

Unread post by JTA » Sun Dec 28, 2014 7:43 pm

bannination wrote:The future of tech, and people?

Image

http://www.bbc.com/news/technology-30290540 Stephen Hawking agrees.


It has begun.
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Re: The future of tech, and people

Unread post by rstrong » Mon Dec 29, 2014 11:40 pm

In high school I had a big case of spare common vacuum tubes and an oscilloscope which I used to resurrect a number of dead TVs. Later I did board-level repairs on Apple II and PC clone computers. I used to customize and burn my own ROMs for them.

But the days of TVs using *ANY* common parts are long gone. Circuit boards in TVs and computers and other electronics use chips with hundreds of tiny pins that are impossible to solder/desolder without very specialized equipment - if you could get information or replacements for them at all. Now it only economical to replace the entire board - and often not even then - and only an authorized service depot can get them. Everything is non-serviceable by design.

That which IS repairable or tinkerable increasingly has teaching others how to do so made illegal by stricter copyright DMCA laws in the US and similar laws that the US makes a requirement of trade agreements with other countries.

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Re: The future of tech, and people

Unread post by Vrede too » Fri May 15, 2015 5:14 pm

So many wingnuts, so little time.

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Re: The future of tech, and people

Unread post by bannination » Fri May 15, 2015 10:59 pm

I didn't even make it through the title.

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Re: The future of tech, and people

Unread post by Vrede too » Sat May 16, 2015 1:40 am

What title?
So many wingnuts, so little time.

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Re: The future of tech, and people

Unread post by Mr.B » Mon Jun 15, 2015 8:41 am

Image

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Re: The future of tech, and people

Unread post by JTA » Tue Jun 16, 2015 5:03 pm

Mr.B wrote:Image
Nice phone you got there Mr. B. Is that your favorite color?

:)
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