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slaves and robots

This made me think:

The danger of the past was that men became slaves. The danger of the future is that man may become robots. - Erich Fromm

Robots are just another form of slave, right? Just ask the Cylons. But I'm not sure Fromm meant that; I suspect he meant something more subtle. What do you think?


( 4 comments — Leave a comment )
Oct. 19th, 2006 05:58 pm (UTC)
Perhaps he feared we'd become technicians, mere processors of either/or algorithms who lose the ability to feel wonder, who can no longer tap the emotional and the creative, thereby cutting us off from each other and extinguishing whatever indefinable spark it is that makes us human.
Oct. 19th, 2006 10:51 pm (UTC)
Probably that we're losing our humanity in favor of slimmer (i.e. broadly capable) ideals of men. Part of it, for me, is the idea that we don't even treat each other like humans--common courtesy. Whenever I'm around cars, I hear "Me, me, me!" Never mind that pedestrians have right-of-way, or that bicycles can be on the road, or that a turn-signal to get in your lane does not mean speed up, or that (similarly) you can slow down when someone needs into your lane. Etc.

But probably the idea of how men are treated at work. Even more so, we find that we're supposed to be disposable, not to expect pensions or social security. Work harder and longer for less!

It's not exactly slavery but dehumanizing.
Oct. 20th, 2006 04:35 am (UTC)
Humans are becoming slaves TO their machines. Think about it.
(Deleted comment)
( 4 comments — Leave a comment )