I was thinking today about some of the newest, cutting edge technologies that have come along over the past few years. Everything from the incredible advancements in 3-D digital filmmaking (ala Avata) or the advancements I have seen in robotics coming out of Japan. Even cloning – that other “C” word we’re not supposed to say – has gotten more common, and they just keep cloning more and more different animals while they perfect the process. I believe with every fiber of my being that the question of cloning humans is not “If”, but “When”. All of these things – and many, many others are examples of technologies in our lives. In the world around us.
The question then becomes, is this a good thing, or is this a bad thing? Now certainly if one were to round-up a hundred people and ask them all this question, you would get a wide range of answers spanning from one end of the spectrum to the other. Certainly everyone would have an opinion. I am not going to try and resolve this difficult question for myself in this one blog post. But I am going to begin to think about it more.
I make my living in the I.T. industry. For that alone I could be little else but a fan of technology. And to clear this up right now, I am. Have been since I was a kid and I read science fiction voraciously. I had the entire hardback series of Tom Swift books and read every one three times. So in general, yes I am a fan of technology. What worries me sometimes though is that mankind seems to have the ability to leap forward technologically, without taking a corresponding step forward in enlightenment. Sometimes I fear that we are not quite mature enough to handle some of the things our brightest minds have come up with. Cloning – yes that’s a big one. Also electronics – how small we can make cameras and listening devices. Are we really ready to give up our privacy? Or do we even realize we have?
Maybe the answer is just what the title of this post suggests. Not good or bad, but indifferent. Maybe, when the gun enthusiasts say that “guns don’t kill people, people kill people“, the same is true of technology. It isn’t good or bad. It is the people who employ it, and how it is employed that make the difference. Technology simply is. It exists because we humans have an unquenchable thirst for the “next great thing”. For doing more with less, for smaller, faster, smarter everythings. The human race is definitely on a path. I don’t know where that path is leading, but I intend to hold on tight and do my best to enjoy the ride. More later (of course) on this topic.