I agree, Matt, and I’ve thought a lot about how technology is causing us to lose a lot of our humanity — we’re adopting the principals of machines (productivity, speed, urgency, precision, multi-tasking, etc). However, I’ve concluded that in the bigger picture of human evolution, it’s inevitable. There’s nothing that’s going to stop the advancement of technology and our adoption of it into our lives (except maybe a plague, asteroid, or other natural disaster that forces peoples’ priorities to change).
That said, I think that the only thing left is to get people thinking about how we can use this incredible technology to do good. How can we use it to do things other than make us money, create new toys and excitements, or allow us to simply do things faster and be more productive? I think that at this stage in human evolution, technology is so new that we don’t even see the really obvious uses for it, things that I think people 100 or 200 years from now will look back us and wonder why we didn’t use them for that purpose sooner. Things that lead to improvement for all humanity, for educating those who need education, and for spreading information and knowledge where it needs to be spread (to help eliminate inequality and ignorance).
However, there is absolutely a need for everyone right now to recognize that technology isn’t the future. We are the future. Technology is the tool and we are its user. It almost seems like we feel as though technology is god and we need to worship it before it gets mad and turns against us or something. WE are in control and we, as individuals, have incredible power to do stuff with these tools.
I’ve actually been thinking a lot about this all week, with regards to how mobile phones have changed the way we communicate and interact (I was talking to @ShannonRTW about this too when we met). We have voluntarily chosen to place more value on the interaction that can happen with the pieces of technology in our pockets than on the person in front of us who we’re having a conversation with — our priorities are misplaced!