Future Shock by Thomas Sowell
The Kurzweil age which is currently reigning and will remain so for the foreseeable future, is a time of unprecedented change and opportunity for many of us. The only way to chart its progression, and what is ahead for us is to read on the pages of Thomas Sowell’s book: Future Shock: How Cyberspace has Affected Our Lives, Businesses, and Are Climate.
As Thomas Sowell points out, cyberspace has drastically impacted and altered the course of human endeavor, now more than ever.
It is that which creates this revolution in communication, our ability to connect with others online, and our ability to communicate globally with each other in the most economical and efficient manner possible.
There have been no borders to divide us since the first brick was laid in Rome. And yet, the same ideas and values have not moved as far, as far or as fast as they should have due to the restrictive nature of physical barriers.
As Thomas Sowell also points out, globalization, digital technology, and globalization, are all converging on humanity’s future, and those who are succeeding now are fast becoming the new norm and standard.
Today’s generations are living in a world that is continually changing, and those in power must adapt, or risk being sidelined in their own time, or be replaced by a younger generation that has not lived in a world created by the demands of capitalism, and its attendant globalization.
Socialism and communism were not the answer. They just did not work well enough in the past, and there are many reasons for this.
Of course, today we are learning the lessons from the failed socialistic and communist regimes. The idea of the socialist and communist societies actually worked for a while; but that is because people, and specifically the young, did not understand the reality of what they were getting themselves into.
But then, this global communication, this reach, this open Internet had already become a reality. And it was then that the opportunity and the need to change began to develop.
Perhaps, we have finally reached the point where our present economic growth can easily and quickly support the creation of a global information economy, as well as its implementation.
Yes, it is likely that the idea of an “Information Economy” may have already developed amongst our individuals and communities within our Western nations and even amongst one another, while the concept of a “World Wide Web” may have developed within the minds of some in the Eastern countries, too.
For whatever the case may be, we are indeed seeing an acceleration in the speed and the expansion of the Internet, and that acceleration is likely to continue for some time. The real question then becomes, what is it that this new global communication has done for our civilization? And how long will it last?
Or, is it still just a dream? Is it merely the projection of those who are living in the Matrix and dreaming themselves to a world without borders, and with a “Global village” embracing all of humanity as one? Well, there is a certain answer to that question, and it is none other than Kurzweil.
For those of you who do not know him, and perhaps are unfamiliar with his work, he is the creator of the “holographic computer” which allowed him to envision “different facets” of the same vision. His visions are, indeed, fascinating and very inspiring.
In Future Shock, Thomas Sowell describes Kurzweil’s vision of a post-human, post-digital species, the Inter-Symbiotic humanity. He believes this is exactly what we should be looking for if we are to avoid the technological singularity – a synthesis of the digital and biological, or that which is neither.
Future Shock is an engaging and entertaining read for anyone who reads science fiction, those who are concerned about the fate of the planet, and those who wish to prepare for a world beyond the 21st century.
We are probably on the cusp of something very special indeed and can look forward to a period when the most important development of our time will be the digital super intelligence and so we will see the fulfillment of Thomas Sowell’s vision.