This question tends to arise in the face of a moral dilemma or existential crisis but in this world of technology, social media, and advanced scientific discoveries, it’s important to keep asking this crucial question.
Are humans really biologically and socially different from the rest of the created world?
The physical similarities between humans and other mammals are quite plain. We are made of the same flesh and blood; we go through the same basic life stages but how is the value of a human determined?
One of the key characteristics that make us human appears to be that we can think about alternative futures and make deliberate choices accordingly.
But we are living in an age that makes defining what makes humans human tricky, not because we are both unique and paradoxical but because technological advancements are changing our very existence.
While we are the most advanced species intellectually, technologically, and emotionally—extending human lifespans, creating artificial intelligence, traveling to outer space, showing great acts of heroism, altruism and compassion—we also have the capacity to engage in primitive, violent, cruel, and self-destructive behavior.
It is particularly challenging to name all of the distinctly human traits or reach an absolute definition of “what makes us human” for a species as complex as ours.
So we remain even in this age of modernity and intellectual freedom, no closer to any concrete answers.
It is our intellect that transcends us from simply existing.
Apart from the obvious intellectual capabilities that distinguish us as a species, humans have several unique physicals, social, biological, and emotional traits which are also changing.
Not too long ago as a species we humans used storytelling for communicating and transmitting our ideas. Now we use smartphones and internet platforms without much consideration for what effect they are having on our minds.
(The mind consists of the intangible realm of thoughts, feelings, beliefs, and consciousness.)
We assume that others have minds somewhat like ours—filled with beliefs and desires—but we can only infer those mental states. We cannot see, feel, or touch them. We largely rely on language to inform each other about what is on our minds.
Our memories are stored in the Cloud adding to the data collected by machine learning algorithms that shape them into products.
(Memory allows human beings to make sense of their existence and to prepare for the future, increasing their chances of survival, not only individually but also as a species.)
“As far as we know, humans have the unique power of forethought to think consciously: The ability to imagine the future in many possible iterations and then to actually create the future we imagine.
This awareness gives meaning to humanity and the awareness of our mortality. We are human because of our reason.
We are determined and capable of knowledge, and the ability to act on it, without depending on anyone else, even religion or some divine intervention but we are not self-sufficient. We need others.
because of this, we interact with the world based on our perception of it.
Regardless of one’s religious beliefs and thoughts about what happens after death, the truth is that, unlike other species who live blissfully unaware of their impending demise, most humans are conscious of the fact that someday they will die.
The story of what made us human is probably not going to focus on changes in our protein building blocks but rather on how evolution assembled these blocks in new ways by changing when and where in the body different genes turn on and off.
Species evolve to fit the particular environment that they are occupying at a given time, not to “advance” to a different evolutionary stage.
So us of us who are alive today with this realization yet to come are the guinea pigs of the future. In the meantime, we can only be human in society not driven by machine learning harvesting data but by the planet, we live on.
It will be a big moment in what truly makes us human when we do so.
All human comments are appreciated. All like clicks and abuse chucked in the bin.
Answering this question is not as straightforward as it might appear.
We can ask, what am I? What is this place? And how am I related to it?
We have a record of history, moral behavior, economics, political and social institutions.
Is it to be human is to be one of us?
This begs the question of the class of creatures to which “us” refers.
In deciding that all and only Homo sapiens are humans, one is expressing a preference about where the boundary separating humans from non-humans should be drawn, rather than discovering where such a boundary lays.
We’re probably unique in our ability to investigate the future, imagine outcomes, and display images in our minds.
In fact, one could know everything there is to know biologically about a human, but still not know what is unique to humanity now, what will be unique about humanity in the future, and what is important about humanity.
Because the steady growth of computing power and sheer reality-describing data will eventually give scientists an unprecedented understanding of biological systems, including the human body, and the ability to hack it in ways that may ultimately defy death.
All of this will lead to a point at which our tools are so proficient at making themselves that more-human-intelligences emerge, and this change is now so accelerated that we can barely make sense of it.
Cells might be persuaded to develop new collective goals and assume shapes totally unlike those that normally develop from an embryo.
A new type of creature—one “defined by what it does rather than to what it belongs to developmentally and evolutionarily.
————- What will the future mean for us, for our relationships with other people, for our hopes and strivings?
When we look at how ordinary people have used the term “human” and its equivalents across cultures and throughout the span of history, we discover that often (maybe even typically) members of other species are explicitly excluded from the category of the human.
For example, Nazis considered Jews to be non-human creatures.
Generally, in wars, soldiers give nicknames to the enemy to dehumanize them.
And another example is provided by the seemingly interminable debate about the moral permissibility of abortion, which almost always turns on the question of whether the embryo is a human being.
But if we think of the human as an indexical expression – a term that gets its content from the context in which it is uttered – a very different picture emerges.
When we describe others as human, we are saying that they are members of our own kind or, more precisely, members of our own natural kind. ie natural kinds are to contrast them with artificial kinds.
If ‘human’ means ‘my own natural kind,’ then referring to a being as human boils down to the assertion that the other is a member of the natural kind that the speaker believes herself to be.
However, when it comes down to it, human beings have nothing special but our highly evolved brains that do something that other species can’t:
We remember, but so do elephants.
So our inquisitive, reflective, pondering minds are forced to wrestle with some big questions in one way or another.
We have cultures and ways of transmitting information, and I guess we may come to realize that it is just us in the future.
Rest assured humans will need humans to be human and the planet we presently call Earth will remain the only place that this is achievable.
You may be certain that AI will want to use satellites to look inside other cultures and will eventually create a human geography information system that uses satellite imagery as the baseline and overlays the satellite maps with datasets and other detailed information covering history, culture, education, economy, religion, weather, and political landscapes.
Who gave EARTH its name? No one knows.
Earth is the only one in our solar system that does not come from Greco-Roman mythology. All of the other planets were named after Greek and Roman gods and goddesses.
Also, there is no particular Homo sapiens individual that researchers recognize as the specimen that gave Homo sapiens its name.
Self-awareness is in its infancy with Artificial intelligence, and the identity and authenticity of an individual in this melted world ahead will be daunting as we don’t yet understand who we are.
Undoubtedly, in the case of humans, we are more creative than any other animals currently alive or pre-human descendants with the same genes, but the problem with evaluating creativity in extinct species is that you can’t talk to them.
We don’t know everything about our own species—but we keep learning more as we are rendering a new world with new opportunities and perspectives that will either go in two directions.
Either we harness technology to human values or technology is turning us into products for exploration.
Presently to live a human life which in essence is determined by an accident of birth is becoming more and more expensive so that ordinary people simply cannot afford to be born.
Moreover, we can scarcely go a day without using inventions and innovations that were once the stuff of science fiction. Cell phones, flat-screen TVs, airbags and antilock brakes, CT scans, digital video players, portable computers, and, of course, the World Wide Web were completely unavailable a few decades ago.
But of course, in a future world where accidents of birth and the fortunes of good genes are even more critical determinants of success than they are now, inequalities that persist will be especially galling.
Because social and positional inequalities already distort existing measures of income and wealth, many seemingly clean-cut economic debates are more intractable than one would imagine. And of course, social anxieties over the unavoidable differences will become even more troubling, the less we can constructively address these issues.
Even if biology could somehow be conquered to the point that genetic good fortune could be parceled out equally to all, the minor differences that remained would loom ever larger.
Whether you view such an eventuality as desirable or irrelevant, more of our intellectual effort should be devoted to this future scenario. Not simply because we are heading there, but in many ways, because parts of that world are already here.
Even today, we routinely exaggerate the extent of material inequality and make foolish comparisons between different time periods and between countries at different levels of development. This does not mean that inequality has disappeared, or that it is unimportant
And as COVID-19 pulls the rugout from under economic growth, money will have so much power that it with AI will control society.
As the need for money grows, so does the greed of it.
Ever since money was introduced as a value to exchange goods, every action that we take exacts a cost and produces consequences and none will be bigger than climate change.
In the economy of the future where knowledge is the most valuable commodity, a person or a country will have to offer more than just money.
Money should never be the master of anyone it is a tool to be used to accomplish the things you want in life.
Even if money does not buy happiness, raising as many people as possible to a middling level of prosperity (an important first step to endure day-to-day economic agony of inequality we are still creating a recipe, not just for disaster but exiting this world.
People are waking up to a story that was already there.
This Recipe for the human stew we are in.
Viruses have been on the planet for millions of years, much longer than Homo sapiens. After a year COVID has infected more than 115 million people and caused over 2.5 million deaths, with over half a million in the US alone.
The world population of 8 billion is doubling every 61 years with 55 percent of us living in urban areas or cities, which is set to rise to 68 percent over the coming decades. Currently, Cities house more than half of the world’s population and are expected to see another 2.5 billion new residents by 2050.
Cities consume over two-thirds of the world’s energy and account for more than 70% of global CO2 emissions.China’s co2 emission exceeded those of all developing countries. 14 gigatons, 25% of global emissions.
Producing enough food to feed the world includes raising large numbers of animals in close quarters, and they represent breeding grounds for viruses and infectious agents that can jump to humans. The spillover from animals to humans is closely linked to environmental change such as Climate change.
60% of all Mammals are livestock. Unsustainable.
80 % of all birds are Poultry. Unsustainable.
83% of wild animals are exterminated along with 50% of plants.
Because of selective breeding, future generations of selectively bred plants and animals will all share very similar genes which will reduce variation perfect for future Pandemics.
Mix all of this with Profit for Profit sake and we got a recipe for the future that will rise quicker than you can say I am all right Jack.
And I’m not saying we should go back and live like nomads. But when you put it all together — population pressure, urbanization, agricultural practices, deforestation, high mobility . . . and then climate change is going to make all these things worse.
Whatever the next event will be — and we know there’ll be another event — it’s already out there. A wake-up call is an understatement.
The Dominant role that humanity now plays on Earth – is unsustainable and we must have pandemic memory, even if we want to forget the past year.
What if anything can be done to reverse centuries of mismanagement?
The future of automation is only possible with the Internet of Things (IoT), the hub of collected data where devices interconnect. To get the most from automation, it’s essential to look beyond convenience toward efficiency.
416.2 terawatt-hours of electricity are used by data centers equaling 1% of world energy.
There is now a great urgency for the world to convert to green energy but solar panels and wind farm electrical cars are not the solutions unless they all operate on Hydrofusion. Yet commercial electricity generation from fusion still remains a goal rather than a reality and it’s a solid bet that it will not arrive on the grid before the 2030s and it will be expensive.
We are left with our whole system of living that requires radical structural change away from profit to beneficial sustainability.
This change requires giving the means to Humans to live their lives with dignity while protecting what is left of our planet.
There are other, more ethical ways to provide social services.
At the moment we have sales taxes, gasoline taxes, poll taxes, food taxes (yes, they tax what you need to survive), sin taxes (cigarettes, alcohol, gambling), “fat taxes” (taxes on unhealthy foods), housing taxes, Social Security taxes, payroll taxes, and income taxes…taxes galore! All harm the poor more than they do the rich. And of course, we have the income tax, which is a progressive tax, a tax that affects the rich more than the poor.
What if we had a cutoff point where at a certain income you pay no taxes, and those below that income get money back from the government. A Universal income.
This alone would be revolutionary for the poor and working-class! Coupled with the removal of all regressive taxes, it would be even better.
Instead of using hundreds of billions to fund programs like Social Security and free medical care, food banks, those who would require those programs would probably just be able to afford most of what they need anyway!
The demands for all goods would skyrocket as people now have free money to put into the market.
On top of this, all education including University should be made free.
If we want humans to protect, the ecosystem we have to make it more profitable to protect than destroy. Pay them to protect it.
To do this see previous posts – A 00.05% World Aid commission.
All human comments are appreciated. All like clicks and abuse chucked in the bin.
” Mankind must put an end to war before war puts an end to mankind.” John F. Kennedy
If you ask Google how many wars have they been in the world.
Here is the answer:
” Early humans could have fought wars that went unnoticed. Sources range from 100,000 to 300,000 WARS.”
Then if you look at wikipedia.org and ask how many are current wars, on top of the list of the 40 active conflicts/ wars around the world at the moment, the Afghanistan conflict is number one, because of the letter A.
You could not be blamed for wondering that after so many wars why it is in these modern days of interconnectivity other than the insanity of one or more leaders that causes wars. The boundary between rational and non-rational is fuzzy. There must exist incentives for conflict and some barriers to the ability to reach an enforceable bargain.
The ideological change is both the most common cause of conflict and the root of most wars, but there is rarely only one cause of dispute.
Not only do we go to war we supply arms to the potential adversity.
War is a better-known word in England that Afghanistan.
(According to Wikipedia,) The Kingdom of England has fought conflicts in 171 of the world’s 193 countries that are currently UN member states, or nine out of ten of all countries.So it is not surprising to learn that the British invasion and occupation of Afghanistan in the late 1830s.
You could say England has been at war from the Battle of Edgehill (October 1642)
What do you define as a war? What do you define as the UK?
Take the nicely named Troubles in Northern Ireland – 30 years.
(The leftover of theIrish War of Independence 2 years has its origins in the 12th century when England invaded to create its first colony.)
As with all wars once they start the original reasons are eventually forgotten in the devastation inflicted.
World war one started in 1914 after four years it left over 15 million people dead and set the stage for World war two six short years.
The Holocaust alone resulted in over 11 million people killed, 6 million of which were Jewish. Somewhere between 22 and 26 million men died in battle during the war. In the final act of the war, between 70,000 and 80,000 Japanese were killed when the U.S. dropped atomic bombs on Hiroshima and Nagasaki.
The Vietnam War lasted for 19 years and 5 months.
The Falklands 10-week.
The Gulf War six months was a war waged by coalition forces from 35 nations led by the United States against Iraq in response to Iraq’s invasion and annexation of Kuwait arising from oil pricing and production disputes.
The ongoing war of the Israeli–Palestinian conflict with Israel established in 1948 continues to the present day on various levels.
Or the ongoing Al-Qaeda insurgency in Yemen now 22 years.
So here is what I have learned about the Afghan wars.
During the nineteenth century, two large European empires vied for dominance in Central Asia. In what was called the “Great Game,” the Russian Empire moved south while the British Empire moved north from its so-called crown jewel, colonial India.
Their interests collided in Afghanistan, resulting in the First Anglo-Afghan War of 1839 to 1842.
This resulted in a series of unsuccessful wars for the British to control Afghanistan, Bukhara, and Turkey. The British lost at all four wars — the First Anglo-Saxon War (1838), the First Anglo-Sikh War (1843), the Second Anglo-Sikh War (1848) and the Second Anglo-Afghan War (1878) — resulting in Russia taking control of several Khanates including Bukhara.
Following this great victory over the British, Afghanistan maintained its independence and continued to play the two European powers off of each other for three more decades.
Afghanistan is not called the “graveyard of empires” for nothing.
The Soviet-Afghan War lasted over nine years, from December 1979 to February 1989. Insurgent groups are known collectively as the mujahideen, as well as smaller Maoist groups, fought a guerrilla war against the Soviet Army and the Democratic Republic of Afghanistan government, mostly in the countryside. The mujahideen groups were backed primarily by the United States, Saudi Arabia, and Pakistan, making it a Cold War proxy war. Between 562,000 and 2,000,000 civilians were killed and millions of Afghans fled the country as refugees, mostly to Pakistan and Iran.
More than nine years of direct involvement and occupation.
On April 27, 1978, a Soviet-supported communist government took over the country with the first Soviet deployment into Afghanistan on December 24, 1979. They had President Amin put to death because he was talking to the Yanks and installed their own leader, President Babrak Karmal.
The Soviets resorted to using napalm, poison gas and helicopter gunships against the Mujahideen – but they experienced exactly the same military scenario the Americans had done in Vietnam.
In the years that followed, more than 870,000 Afghans were killed, three million were maimed or wounded, a million were internally displaced and over five million were forced to flee the country.
It became a source of embarrassment for the Soviet Union as the Mujahideen (a guerilla force on a holy mission for Allah) would come down from the mountains in the summer with US-supplied Stinger missiles and after around 13,000 Soviet troops were killed the Russian had had enough with the country becoming one of the poorest nations in the world.
By 1982 some 2.8 million Afghans had sought asylum in Pakistan, and another 1.5 million had fled to Iran. The Soviets suffered some 15,000 dead and many more injured. 1988 the Soviet Union signed an accord with the United States, Pakistan, and Afghanistan and agreed to withdraw its troops.
Mikhail Gorbachev took the U.S.S.R. out of Afghanistan.
Men start growing beads and destroy all non-islamic idols and statues- al-Qaid.
By the end of the 1980s, the Mujahideen was at war with itself in Afghanistan with hard-line Taliban fighters. The word Taliban means “students”
By 1982, the Mujahideen controlled 75% of Afghanistan despite fighting the might of the world’s second most powerful military power.
On 25 April 1992, a civil war had ignited between three, later five or six, mujahideen armies, which escalated into another full-blown conflict. By mid-1994, Kabul’s original population of two million had dropped to 500,000. In 1995–96, the new militia Taliban, supported by Pakistan and ISI, had grown to be the strongest force.
On September 2001 the 9/11 terrorist attack which the USA believed that Osama Bin Laden head of al-Qaida was the behind the attacks. The United States began bombing Afghanistan and 10 years later kill Osama.
As of August 2016, about 104,000 people have been killed in the war in Afghanistan since 2001, more than 31,000 being civilians.
With the rising of ISIS in Afghanistan, the country was plunged into a new humanitarian emergency and Afghans into a new internally displacement and the refugee crisis.
Since invading in 2001, the United States has poured more than $117 billion into Afghanistan.
The war has enjoyed bipartisan support from the beginning. Bush launched it. Obama began his administration approving a “surge” of 30,000 troops for what he called the “good war.”
The United States went into Afghanistan after the 9/11 attacks to get bin Laden, quash Al Qaeda and punish the Taliban for harbouring them. Bin Laden is dead; Al Qaeda has metastasized across the region; the Taliban have been hunted for 16 years.
Now there is no clear vision of where we’re headed.
A blank check to wage war anywhere, any time, for any length,
To me it is quite clear with Trump “where we’re headed”—to more years of endless war without victory, wasting more lives ensnared in a war with no exit.
So the situation isn’t complicated:
The origins of opium date as far back at 3400 B.C
There is enough opium production in Afghanistan (something the US was never truly capable of controlling or suppressing.) to ensure that the current war ends in a dream-like state and armed nation-building does not work.
Forty years might seem a long time but its nothing compared to wars back in the days when wars lasted from anything up to 700 years.
So here are few brewing for the future.
The U.S.A. vs. Iran.
Because of Donal Trump re-election. His inability to learn from Vietnam or Afghan that military power will mean little when drawing into a decades-long guerrilla war with factions of the Iranian regime.
Egypt vs. Ethiopia.
Because the Ethiopia Blue Nile dam is 60% completed…
Iran vs. Saudi Arabia.
Because the collapse of Lebanon, the Arab Spring, the Yemen civil war, and the Qatari blockade are all significant global geopolitical events spawned by tensions between Iran and Saudi Arabia. The two nations are already engaged in numerous proxy wars in Syria, Yemen and Iraq, and as time goes on this list is only set to grow in size.
North Korea vs. the U.S.A.
Because North Korea operates as a military dictatorship,
Russia vs. NATO.
Because Nato needs to justify its existence.
The Irish have always been noted for a complete disregard for time.
Venezuelan Civil War.
Because it is safe to say things are not going too well in Venezuela.
South China Sea War.
Because it is home to 10% of the world’s fisheries and tens of billions of barrels of oil.
Amazon Apps ves Humanity
Because we were too lazy and gave away all of our data.
Because this could very well be the catalyst to end all wars.
All human comments appreciated. All like clicks and abuse chucked in the bin.
Answering this question is not as straightforward as it might appear.
There are billions of us alive all consciousness of each other but unable to explain why.
Perhaps this is why religions were created.
Consciousness is everything people experience.
However, there are different levels of consciousness and they can be related to other global changes in conscious level. All are private and inaccessible to observers.
(Conscious level (how conscious one is) and conscious content (what one is conscious of) are related to each other.)
So at what is a structure complex enough to become conscious.
Why am I human instead of a particle?
If we are particles we are no longer dealing with a purely material theory of consciousness because the source of the conscious particles cannot itself be material.
Its source requires an immaterial intervention.
I will return to consciousness later in the post.
The role that technology plays in human life is becoming an increasingly urgent question not just in tackling climate change but what will be considered in the future to be human.
Where we’re headed and what it will mean for humanity is a question seldom discussed.
Bioelectric implants, genetic modification packages, the ability to tamper with our very biology — there won’t be enough time to adjust or to reassess who we are and what it means to be human.
Our technology is developing so much faster than our culture and our institutions, and the gap between these things can only grow so far before society becomes dangerously unstable.
It’s hard to really know what we are becoming because so many of these changes are unforeseen or unpredictable.
At the moment computers and robots interact with the world without being conscious.
Are we at risk or are we becoming semi-machines who are like the marionettes of our own moment-to-moment experiences?
We’re losing our ability to be in the world in a way that isn’t mediated by some electronic appendage.
The more we live through screens, the more we are living in a narrow bandwidth, an abstract world that’s increasingly artificial the more we are becoming non-human.
The virtual world might be safe and controllable, but it’s not rich and unpredictable in the way the real world is.
What is all this doing to our habits, to our cultural sense of who we are?
With synthetic biology, which is basically human beings redesigning their biological structure we are distant to lose our connection to reality altogether.
Because it’s about us modifying our very genetic code which is extremely dangerous if it’s not controlled and safeguarded.
Intelligence is the most powerful instrument around.
If you’re embodying that kind of intelligence in increasingly sophisticated machines we will be coming to depend on them more and more over time.
(What worries me is that we’re headed in the direction of building AI technologies that are at the human level and, eventually, far beyond that.)
If AI becomes so intelligent that they can perform an infinite variety of tasks across domains of activity. We’ll continue to make them smarter and more capable and more powerful until we reach a point at which they start to learn on their own and start to modify themselves. Once that happens, they’ll be fully unpredictable — and then who the hell knows what happens next.
Any fool on the street can tell you that with nanotechnology, artificial intelligence, machine learning, bioengineering, brain implants, quantum computers, algorithms, robots that technology is changing at a whiplash-inducing pace.
So because there is no widely accepted theory about what happens in the brain to make consciousness possible what is it about being human that really matters?
Back to look at Consciousness.
Nothing has authority over it but is it what makes us human.
Nothing is above it. Nothing rules it.
Since everything exists within it, it does not exist within anything.
Since it is not dependent on anything, it is eternal, it is outside of realms of being and time.
In fact, consciousness actually exists independently and outside of the brain as an inherent property of the universe itself like dark matter and dark energy or gravity. It is not dependent on anything. No one can envision it. No one can comprehend it. Neither physical nor unphysical it is beyond knowledge.
It simply apprehends itself.
The brain does not create or produce consciousness; rather, it filters it.
This implies a very real and direct connection between the brain, human consciousness and the existence of the Universe — that they are fundamentally inseparable at the quantum level.
Consciousness permeates reality.
Rather than being just a unique feature of human subjective experience, it’s the foundation of the universe, present in every particle and all physical matter.
Who or what counts as human?
It’s well-known that the Nazis considered Jews to be non-human creatures.
All the questions we currently face can be traced to this, larger, underlying question. What is Human?
If one says that all and onlyHomo sapiensare humans, one is expressing a preference about where the boundary separating humans from non-humans should be drawn.
What sort of evidence can settle the question?
There’s something about us that is the opposite of artificial. It’s the opposite of something made.
This raises the below questions.
What genetic engineering stuff promises to bring down the line is human beings who are tailored to particular purposes, either by themselves over time or by other human beings.
We becoming products or commodities, and products or commodities are subordinated to particular functions or purposes.
All the values that give our lives meaning are at risk.
What becomes of autonomy? What becomes of free will?
All these questions are on the table.
By the year 2500, people will not need to be exactly like they are now so it stands to reason that semi humans will break the bonds that hold our present-day society together. They will shatter our sense of identity so quickly that it creates a kind of existential chaos.
So what are these technologies adding to the human experience and, more importantly, what are they subtracting from the human experience?
We live in a world of wonder and mystery, and the more we discover, the more there seems to be to find out but should we be more worried about the world we’re creating?
The artificial kind of worlds.
.This post is compliments of the FRIGHTLY SORRY<SORRY<SORRY. CLUB.
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The term ” Human capital” suggests that we create ourselves as social beings, and then society recognizes the outcome of our self-making by assigning them values. This value is then exchanged for commodities and services of equal value.
WE SPEND OUR LIVES TRYING TO MAKE THIS VALUE HIGHER.
No discussion of human capital can omit the influence of families on the knowledge, skills, health, values, and habits. But when we become a risk, a drain on society, a problem of a life gone on too long we reflect the political and economic goals that the notion of human capital was designed to fulfil – profit.
When we assign value to human life it means different worth including negative value – to the lives of different people. Life subsequently came to be valued according to its ability to foster the national economy – its potential contribution to GDP with nil contribution deemed a surplus to manage.
This has become the bedrock of modern capitalism – persons and profit with the smartphone transferring its owner into an asset of significant value.
Profit-seeking Algorithms that are now embedded in our societies making it seem natural to be monitored and to allow access to every moment of our days.
Assigning life a market value is no way to guarantee that this value will be high.
Everyone is able to help themselves but information technologies are fastening individuals to prefabricated categories ( Age, gender, religion, ) solidifying us as persons of a certain kind.
Even if we consider ourselves to be so much more than our data or human capital, we cultivate, display, and leverage, our socially recognized arsenal of valued traits—no matter how worrying the manner in which they were consolidated—whenever circumstances call for it.
Human capital, then, is something other than the sum total of our ambition.
Like other kinds of capital, its value is set by market dynamics that support a larger process of accumulation.
We are unable to determine how much we are worth to our society.
There is no stopping this form of unattachment to reality, to politics, to nature, to others and it is destined to become worse. We have world leaders Twittering, governments pandering to populism, androids apps grabbing your data even if you block them.
Indeed it would be fair to say that Capitalism is disappearing underground.
The idea of human lives as surplus—superfluous to society rather than being its building blocks—offends our robust sense of self.
However, in designating selfhood unique yet classifiable, a personal project of self-creation yet a collective subject of political policy, we end up with human capital.
We feel oppressed by constantly having to demonstrate our worth in a matrix of investments and returns.
Is there any solution to this detachment?
Not with Social media that is putting a protective net around people with this net actually becoming a limiting cage.
A vote every five or ten years will not do it.
Countries must enable their citizens to become involved directly in the economy by offering non-trading but inheritable Participation Bonds with guaranteed returns in order to make the economy serve the people rather than the other way around.
In a world of universal and instantaneous communication with robotic technology now treating our abilities to earn a living the coffers of the state are diminishing.
Some will say that Participation Bonds is a form of Socialism.
It might well be but it is not the state owning the assets of a country but its people have a vested interest.
The current relationship between the balance sheet value of human capital and the operating costs of the human capital is not realistic. Successful leaders want to know how their people are deployed and new technological advances clearly are of little value to countries that don’t put their people first.
Therefore, economists regard expenditures on education, training, medical care, and so on as investments in human capital. They are called human capital because people cannot be separated from their knowledge, skills, health, or values in the way they can be separated from their financial and physical assets but tangible forms of capital are not the only type of capital.
No matter what colour, creed or status you are if you are not attached you cannot reap the rewards.
Other words if you are on a sailing boat crossing the Atlantic there is no point in being pushed over or jumping overboard if you want to arrive.
The old adage of “from shirtsleeves to shirtsleeves no longer applies.
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These days how is the will of the people manifested and defined?
There are two sides to this argument.
Firstly, social movements and groups devoted to progressive issues and social change use technology to improve democracy.
The other side of the argument is that new advances in technology can be
distinguished from the media that preceded it as it is relatively cheap, easy to use, difficult to control and interactive.
Technology does not only divide the haves and the have-nots but also is important to facilitate democratic transitions by creating a more open political culture.
As a result, there is the problem re-striking a balance between state, market and societal control of IT, where the state and society emphasise the equality of access, while the market emphasises efficient development of technology and production.
As the capabilities of technology increase, so does our dependency on it.
Nowadays, we find yourself looking at our iPhone almost every ten minutes.
So what leverage does technology have on our democratic proceeds or institutions?
Without physical human interaction, we fall subject to potentially losing our sense of real connection. We’ll become desensitized, numb, and oblivious to the social cues that we would have witnessed had only the conversation been made in-person.
Is the democratic system more to do with how the app works?
Is digital technology leading us into a new dark age?
Will it be thanks to technology, politicians are no longer essential to
the formation of organized society?
Look at initiatives like Democracy. Earth, Asgardia, and Artisanopolis are envisioning new forms of society in which the people govern themselves.
These societies could have economies that are powered by Bitcoin, governing documents that are drafted through peer-to-peer networks, and decisions that are recorded via blockchains. They needn’t apply declarations written centuries ago to today’s unique landscape — they can start from the ground up.
These are the technology incubator of a new democracy.
But are technology and democracy compatible?
Social media manipulation of elections.
Politics has become far more emotional, as a result of our total
immersion in information at the cost of a more rational view of things.
Voter data mining, online polling, electronic voting booths, and, of course, twitter, facebook and emails.
All these communications have left the door wide open for misinformation to seep into the public consciousness, clouding what was already complicated and leaving many unsure of where to look for the truth…or what the truth even looks like.
Brexit being the current prime example, which is turning into a power struggle camouflaged in democracy called the will of the people.
The average citizen will need to work even harder to separate fact from fiction on the internet over the course of the next four months of Brexit.
“We the People” online petition. People no longer need to wait for an issue to bubble over before taking action.
It’s probably too early to reach a conclusion about the correlation between
technology and democracy but it is evident that technology can shape challenges in the political, social, military and economic environment of the political system.
In essence, if democracy is impacted by technology by way of a systematic
the application of knowledge to resources to produce goods and services, it will enhance stability and equality.
Therefore, it can shape challenges in the environment of a democratic political system.
There is no doubting as technology advances, humans will increasingly delegate responsibility to intelligent machines able to make their own decisions.
This entails considering various ways of adjusting the organisational structures that are relevant for economic productivity, political participation and cultural diversity in line with preferred social scenarios; and the cultural.
As far as technology is concerned, any definitive claim whether it is utopian or a Luddite when it comes to democracy can only succumb to technological
Finally, the technology could in future greatly benefit society if its advancement is harmonious with national democratic imperatives and if it is intended to serve the needs of the people.
The goal for the future will be to somehow bridge the theoretical possibilities
with technological capability.
This involves creating information technologies that reduce the threat and
vulnerabilities and encourage environmentally sustainable applications of IT.
The most obvious problem is that information and communication technology companies will have little incentive to develop new products to meet the needs of people who cannot use or afford their existing services.
Thankfully, we have no shortage of ways to discuss the topic.
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Some of these figures may seem mind-blowing when you take a pragmatic look at the current state of the global.
The standard list of threats/factors affecting the globe is getting bigger and bigger not smaller and smaller.
I suppose the simple answer is that us humans are incapable of acting as one, and if we do manage to do so its only in small groups in the short-term. For every action there is an equal and opposite criticism.
Combine this with conflicting interests and you have a concoction of good doers all competing for limited funds to address what ever.
The problem is man is said to have evolved from monkeys and apes…but we still have monkeys and apes.
Take for instance Climate change which is now emerged as one of the most serious threats impacting on universal values.
With global environmental changes locked into our future you would think as intelligent humans we would act as one to avoid the obvious consequences.
Our best efforts to do us fall by the way side because of, not because what is obvious, but because of the costs to profit.
Hypocrisy is the Vaseline of political intercourse.
We are left with a world that is represented by what we call The United Nations.
Country names and little flags of identity rather than one unified group called humans. Perhaps if they we removed prior to passing any resolution’s that effect the Glob we might see humans acting as one.
But this will achieve nothing unless we get Capitalism to do the right thing when nobody’s watching.
So here is a solution:
Why not impose an International legal world aid commission on all activities that produce profit for profit sake. (See previous posts)
While we are at it why not impose a 0.0005% commission on all tweets, on all smart phone inquirers, on all internet purchases, on all social media posts.
Either of the above would produce a perpetual fund of billions to tackle the coming natural disasters, the coming technology inequality, the malnutrition that is now the underlying cause of nearly half of all under-5 deaths worldwide. The list is endless.
There is no simple solution to creating a more equitable world.
The world community has accepted the need to limit the increase in the earth’s temperature to 2°C and initiate changes to achieve this objective.
This will require the world to move away from burning fossil fuels and effectively reach a stage of zero carbon emissions. This will require a radical change in the way humanity lives as we move forward.
The earth has limited resources. Also, there are limits on the renewability of some of its renewable resources. Humanity is using substantially more resources than the earth can renew. We all need to change the way we live to achieve a proper balance.
In order to face the challenges posed by these dual issues, the world has to act in unison.
TAKE TACKLING CLIMATE CHANGE. ( See previous posts)
There are a number of disparities to be addressed. There is a very wide range of per-capita emissions—generally, the wealthy countries having higher per-capita emissions.
There is a perception among the emerging economies that the world has reached the current situation due to the past emissions by high emitters and that they should be willing to share a higher cost of moving to low-carbon economy.
Further, different regions will be affected differently—some may not feel the consequences; at least immediately. Such countries may not want to join the worldwide efforts in a meaningful way. Getting all countries to follow a common path will be the biggest challenge in the years to come.
We must deal with problems on Earth first, before we can leave it.
Sustainability is not“about” the integration of ecological, social and economic issues, nor is it “about” widespread consultation nor is it “about” improving quality of life.
It’s about maintaining or sustaining something called Earth.
Sustainability must be a destination, not just a journey.
It is worth noting that treating a sustainable state as a destination doesn’t mean that society cannot revise or refine its idea of what sustainability is at a future date.
Even with everyday destinations an initial intention to go to the fruit and veg shop doesn’t preclude a later decision to go to the bank as well or to go to the supermarket instead!
Space and the Higgs-Boson can wait, when every day, 17,000 children die before reaching their fifth birthday.
A future with no fresh water, clean air, energy and food, you can rest assured no one will remember the Internet, or artificial Intelligence.
So what price are we willing to pay for knowing that in the future, humanity can be saved because there are other planets out there capable of sustaining life?
Our priority surely is to take care of our planet before we go roaming around others.
For things that don’t matter we can please ourselves how we approach the sustainability effort (ie. as a destination, journey or both, or an issue of total disinterest!).
O! By the way if we did create a World Aid Commission there would be no need to stop any exploration. Today, both Voyager 1 and 2 are the farthest man-made objects in space.
Our message in a bottle was in the form of a gold-plated sonograph record containing compilations of music, images and greetings best representing Planet Earth, affixed on the outer surfaces of both the Voyager spacecrafts, if we are careful long before, “A billion years from now, when everything on Earth we’ve ever made has crumbled into dust, when continents have changed beyond recognition and our species is unimaginably altered or extinct, the Voyager record will speak for us.”
Carl Sagan’s declaration above without a doubt holds true, not just on the frailty of the ‘pale blue dot’ we call home, but also on the life it sustains.
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Technology is transferring society and the way it is organised.
The Internet and social media have ended the monopoly of information previously enjoyed by authoritarian governments.
In 2017, over half of humanity will be online – one of the biggest societal shifts in history. Citizens expect their governments, political parties and civic groups to keep up.
The amount of data we produce doubles every year revealing how we think and feel. In another ten years there will be sensors measuring everything and the amount of data will double every 12 hours.
Hope disease will be all that is left.
To day 70% of all financial transactions are performed by Algorithms.
News content is more and more automatically generated.
Half of to days jobs are threatened to disappear.
It is beyond a doubt that the world economy and society will change fundamentally.
Smart artificial intelligence is learning to recognize patterns.
Take the wrong decisions now and we are all Fucked.
To day Algorithms know pretty well what we do and what we think and how we feel with the resulting decisions feeling like they were our own.
We are on the threshold of being remotely controlled.
Individual monitoring will lead to citizen score.
And it won’t stop there.
Mark my words:
Persuasive computing is just around the corner. Data – empowered “Wise Kings” with manipulation technologies used by Google Facebook Twitter Amazon Snapshot and the like will be nudging us and our governments without Democracy to do things in their opinions and not ours.
We already have a world where Hope disease is rampant and by the time technology can win elections it will be too late for a vaccine.
Manipulation will be the rage and undesirable side effects can be expected.
Social polarization is only just beginning destroying social cohesion.
Brexit- Donald Trump.
The question is: Why are we and our elected representatives so blind to this come age.
The reason is because it is happening at a pace of digital slavery. Slowly enough that there is little resistance from the population, who are loosing their freedom and fast enough to be unstoppable.
Its time to sit up and pay attention.
The right of individual self-development can only be exercised by those who have control over their lives. A democracy cannot work unless these rights are respected. If constrained, this undermines our society and the power state.
The current collecting and processing of personal data is certainly not compatible with the application data laws.
Without transparency, legal responsibility and ethical constraints Algorithms for profit are replacing thinking of all citizens. Computer cluster will control our lives.
This is to be avoided at all costs.
But there is little outcry that decisions by powerful algorithms are undermining the basis of ” Collective intelligence” Big Data, artificial intelligence, cybernetics, and behavioral economics are shaping our society for better or worse.
If we do not put in place a New World Organisation that exams all technology to be fit for purpose, to be compatible with society’s core values we will be living in a digital prison, under a digital dictatorship that sooner than later will cause extensive damage.
An automated society with totalitarian features owned by Google and its Tech buddies.
Collective intelligence requires a high degree of diversity.
The current moment confronts us with a paradox.
The unprecedented advance of technologies that facilitate individual empowerment and the overall lack of advance of democracy worldwide?
Many democracies, both long-established ones and newer ones, are experiencing serious institutional debilities and weak public confidence.
The next decade or two may well produce a different overall picture of global democratic change as technology-enabled patterns of political innovation spread to high-density urban environments, making mayors and local councils the spearhead of broader democratic change.
Moreover, new technologies are empowering individuals in many facets of their lives not directly related to politics, for example by giving the poor access to previously unattainable banking services and helping map the property rights of the poorest communities.
These slow-burn socioeconomic forms of empowerment will likely also have significant larger political effects in the years immediately ahead.
Facebook and Twitter exchanges will not automatically create a democracy or an economy.
Ask yourself why with all the technological development of recent years, which seemed to promise all sorts of economic leaps and bounds, has coincided with economic slow growth and rising inequality, especially in the countries most enjoying this technology.
It’s because of Hope Disease.
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( If you own a Smartphone this is a disturbing seven minute read)
I am sure because the major predecessor system to technology is organic life many questions as to the effects of technology have been asked.down the centuries.
I am also sure that in the end, history will record that human evolution is directly correlated to technology evolution. Evolution has a bias and that is to survive.
Can we see the direction of technology in the direction of life and evolution?
Many argue that technology has mostly caused a positive effects to our lives but I beg to differ.
Because to days technology has forces us to redistribute our time. Because we have become so heavily involved in what’s going on somewhere else and not so involved in our immediate environment we can barely fight back. We just do whatever technology wants us to.
Today’s society is becoming more and more addicted to technology that people are not appreciating what the world has to offer.
The more advanced technology becomes, the more it seems to have control over our lives.
So, looking at the evolution of life and the long-term histories of past technologies, what is the long-term trajectories of the technium?
What does technology want?
In general the long-term bias of technology is to increase the diversity of artifacts, methods, techniques. More ways, more choices.
Over time technological advances invent more energy-efficient methods, and gravitate to technologies which compress the most information and knowledge into a given space or weight. Also over time, more of more of matter on the planet will be touched by technological processes.
Knowledge is at the tip of our fingers.
Technology impacts a million basic things that we take for granted every day.
But is this really good for us?
Many including me will argue that technology is making us dumber. ( See previous posts)
We can no longer remember much because we store everything we need to remember on our phone or look it up when needed. Nowadays, people are becoming too reliant on their phones and other technology that they don’t realize what they are missing.
Our absurd addictions to technology, social media and our smartphones is starting to affect our brains. Technology has brought us to the point where we can become so socially awkward that we would consider a relationship with a robot in the not so distant future.
It is increasing so much that you don’t even realize what you are trusting on!
We can’t control it anymore. Every minute of our lives we are distracted by an electronic device. The more automated we become, the more technology takes over our lives both now and in the future.
It is obvious that over time technologies will require more surrounding technologies in order to be discovered and to operate; some technologies becoming eusocial – a distributed existence – in which they are inert when solitary.
Also, technologies tend toward ubiquity and cheapness with new levels of complexity (though many will get simpler, too).
In the long run, technology increases the speed at which it evolves and encourages its own means of invention to change.
It aims to keep the game of change going.
What this means is that when the future trajectory of a particular field of technology is in doubt, “all things being equal” you can guess several things about where it is headed:
•The varieties of whatever will increase. Those varieties that give humans more free choices will prevail.
•Technologies will start out general in their first version, and specialize over time. Going niche will always be going with the flow. There is almost no end to how specialized (and tiny) some niches can get.
•You can safely anticipate higher energy efficiency, more compact meaning and everything getting smarter.
•All are headed to ubiquity and free. What flips when everyone has one? What happens when it is free?
•Any highly evolved form becomes beautiful, which can be its own attraction.
•Over time the fastest moving technology will become more social, more co- dependent, more ecological, more deeply entwined with other technologies. Many technologies require scaffolding tech to be born first.
•The trend is toward enabling technologies which become tools for inventing new technologies easiest, faster, cheaper.
•High tech needs clean water, clean air, reliable energy just as much as humans want the same.
These are just some of the things technology wants.
Technology isn’t done transforming the world’s landscape. As a whole it is not just a jumble of wires and metal but a living, evolving organism that has its own unconscious needs and tendencies. By aligning ourselves with the long-term imperatives of this near-living system, we can capture its full gifts.
We don’t always have to do what technology wants, but I think we need to begin with what it wants so that we can work with these forces instead of against them.
Are we prepared? I think not.
We are still in a very early evolutionary state of this technology we call ‘society’.
Humans can be seen as dumb cogs:
It is only on the scale of statistics with millions of particles that a particle’s choice shapes up as a predictable radiation half-life. But even individual human wants and desires average out to weirdly predictable laws in aggregate.
The question is, if the earth (nature, human society topped with technology) is a body of a ‘technium’, who will she communicate, who will she mate?
AI already exists and its name is “Progress”.
It exists now in an embryonic state. It is dependent on nourishment through its virtual umbilical cord from its nurturing mother which is human civilization. The Singularity will be the moment of its birth, but it is already alive.
It is on the threshold of taking on a life of its own. It is beyond our control and it is hurtling the human race towards a singularity that will cause the overthrow of humanity by an AI.
Of course we humans want certain things from the technium, but at the same time there is an inherent bias in the technium outside of our wants. Beyond our desires, there is a tendency within the technium that – all other things being equal — favors a certain solutions. Technology will head in certain directions because physics, mathematics, and realities of innovation constrain possibilities.
What are the most awesome technology creations that have changed the world that we live in? It’s impossible to list them all.
Let’s start to see where we are going with some of the below Technological inventions.
Fibre optic technology. Graphene.Cellphone technology. Personal Computing. Microchip technology. Smartphone and tablet technology. Nano Robots. Satellite Communications. Solar Cells. The Internet of Things. Transistors. 3D Printing technology. Space flight. Nuclear power. Artificial intelligence. Organ transplants. Digital media. Genetic engineering.
It is obvious that most are only at their beginning such as Drones and Robots, 3D Printing and Artificial Intelligence and Machinery that can fix itself.
You could write a litany on any one, but for the sake of this post I am going to look at one in particular. The Smart Phone.
It is already changing the landscape.
Let’s look at the direction of smart phone technology, the ways smart phone technology changes society, understand the impact of change and manner in which we live our lives, and how smartphones could potentially create hazardous situations.
To understand the direction of Smartphone technology we must first except that smartphones phones come with many benefits i.e. they can be used as a library, they can multitask etc. but they can also influence your social life negatively.
Given that the society is heading towards a smart phone world, it is apparent that individuals will be investing more time to their screens tweeting and engaging in Facebook forums than meeting one on one with friends and colleagues.
That is so because increased number of smartphones will share similar mobile applications hence the ability to interact freely with social mates. This also poses a danger to relationships between individuals. Despite individuals being able to make an array of friends and engage in different relationships at a particular time the intensity of those relationships cannot be quantified as some persons in the social media are imposters.
From the above scenarios, it is apparent that despiterelating with different people in different social platforms, no real oral communication is enhanced.
Smart phones have been a source of satisfaction to all social platform i.e. Twitter,Facebook, communication requirements. However, the negative effects of these social networks come with serious repercussions to the user.
There are three major areas that are vastly affected by smart phones, and they are business and socialization and wars.
Having said that, because technology explosion cannot be controlled, individuals need to acquire these new gadgets but not let their lives be controlled fully by these objects.
This implies that technology is rapidly changing to match the needs of humanity.
We live in a world today that relies on data communications. Smartphones can assist users in many different ways when it comes to data needs. Since the Smartphone has come into existence, it has constantly evolved into an improving piece of technology. This is something that will always occur in regards to smartphones, because companies have to either keep up or get left behind.
As far as smart phones are revolutionizing the mode of communication and enhancing the levels of interaction between remote and urban people, they are alienating and limiting people interactions, creating inequalities across the globe.
Despite being of importance uniting distant individuals,smart phones have helped extend the gap between close individuals while increasing distance between them.
From the aforementioned, it is apparent that the coming into force of smart phones has hampered oral communication greatly.
In my considered opinion, despite bringing with it advanced computing capability, in the ethic aspect, it is not of much importance to get a smart phone. This is because it will help one distant him/herself from close persons,jeopardized social engagement
Smartphones are addictive phones.
Giving the rapid expansion of the technology industry society is now consuming a lot of technology.
Has their influence and effects now gone to far?
Are they to blame for the deteriorating education levels. Bringing with it advanced learning engines i.e. in build educational information, smart phones is a threat to traditional learning with is heavy influences on individual level of personal development.
At the moment it is evident that not much weight is attached to social media statements as compared to physical statements. Few individual take social media interactions seriously, this is despite the existence of individuals who value social opinion that a real one.
Looking back at history, when a type of technology loses its usefulness, we put it aside for something better.
It’s not really our fault.
There seems to be no doubt then that technology has taken over our lives and many may say for the worse.
I really don’t think that electric cars, VR goggles and new, improved selfie sticks are the true measure of man’s technological progress as a species.
Can a ‘like’ really represent popularity and how others perceive you?’
It is only when we forget that it is us who should be controlling technology and not technology that should be controlling us that we should worry. We have to be accountable to society and ourselves. Or else the very fabric of trust that holds society together can and will fall apart.
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We are just an accident of creation an algorithm of evolution and technology is only created by our minds, with our imaginations.
The Internet allows for our humanity in modern-day times to interconnect and promote globalization and information sharing.
Without imaginations, no technology would have been created and with the decoupling of intelligence and consciousness our time is coming to an end.
Soon we have an algorithm that will figure out.
“Why was God a Man?” “Why we have such a heartless world”.
We are just at the start of this process and there is nothing we can do to stop it. Data- driven technologies are going to rule the roost. From your birth to your demise.
Smart phones and Social Media are eroding the very concept of individuality which is the start of disintegrating from within.
We will live for longer, but as Dataists, run by an unchallenged high priestly caste with all the knowledge, Facebook, Google, Apple, Microsoft.
Technology, a word with Greek origins, is defined as, “the practical application of knowledge especially in a particular area”.
Technology to-day is a word used to collectively describe or portray the advancements abilities,creations, undertakings, views, and knowledge of a singular group of persons: we as human-kind.
We are being reduced to the mentality of Chickens.
Technology… is a queer thing.
“It brings you great gifts with one hand, and it stabs you in the back with the other.”
“Humanity is acquiring all the right technology for all the wrong reasons.”
R. Buckminster Fuller
However, the decision to use it proficiently in proper perspective is one’s
’own decision and choice.
If technological advancements are put in the best uses, it further inspires the development in related and non-related areas but at the sametime its negative use can create havoc in the humanity or the world.
Technology has, and will, change the moral fabric of humanity; it is up to the present generation to heed this warning and not allow such societal travesties of immense proportions ever to occur.
Again Technological Advancements will continue to advance rapidly as we move into the next millennium. What is important is to ensure that these advances benefit humanity as a whole.
And what exactly is the “Singularity” supposed to be?
It’s a future mythological moment when machine (artificial) intelligence becomes more “intelligent” than human intelligence.