Social media philosophy blog
Monday August 21st 2017

Technologies will sometimes fail us

In the aftermath of the Japanese earthquakes and the horrible effects on nuclear power plants, this technology is being reevaluated all over the globe. It is as if we were blind for the potential hazard of positioning nuclear plants in one of the most earthquake prone regions of the world. If we have missed something this obvious, what else have we missed? I see a direct parallel to our current development of Internet technology where we on the one hand are embedding Internet into all features of our civilization (including nuclear plants). On the other hand, we are massively expanding new vulnerabilities practically day by day.

After the earthquakes, news media could at least console us with the news that Japanese Internet service had remained open through the crisis. And yes, there is this kind of awesome stability built into the very technology of the Internet. The distributed character of Internet communication allows continued service even if some parts of it are shut down. However, this robustness is misleading. We need not be worried about us hurting the Internet, but perhaps about it, this marvelous technology, becoming an instrument for hurting us.

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One Response to “Technologies will sometimes fail us”

  1. This post, in its simplicity, got me thinking. Thank you for that.

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