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Is it okay to be a Luddyte? Eine Frage die sich Thomas Pynchon in diesem Essay aus dem Jahr 1984 stellt. Er verteidigt hier die historischen Maschinenst├╝rmer wie ihre modernen Variationen zum 25ten Jahrestag von C.P. Snow’s „The Two Cultures and the Scientific Revolution.“ (via)

The knitting machines which provoked the first Luddite disturbances had been putting people out of work for well over two centuries. Everybody saw this happening — it became part of daily life. They also saw the machines coming more and more to be the property of men who did not work, only owned and hired. It took no German philosopher, then or later, to point out what this did, had been doing, to wages and jobs. Public feeling about the machines could never have been simple unreasoning horror, but likely something more complex: the love/hate that grows up between humans and machinery — especially when it’s been around for a while — not to mention serious resentment toward at least two multiplications of effect that were seen as unfair and threatening. One was the concentration of capital that each machine represented, and the other was the ability of each machine to put a certain number of humans out of work — to be „worth“ that many human souls. What gave King Ludd his special Bad charisma, took him from local hero to nationwide public enemy, was that he went up against these amplified, multiplied, more than human opponents and prevailed.

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If our world survives, the next great challenge to watch out for will come — you heard it here first — when the curves of research and development in artificial intelligence, molecular biology and robotics all converge.

Written by ubik

August 18th, 2010 at 1:19 am

Posted in Kultur

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