Thursday, May 1, 2008

How the World Works

1) everything that’s already in the world when you’re born is just normal;
2) anything that gets invented between then and before you turn thirty is incredibly exciting and creative and with any luck you can make a career out of it;
3) anything that gets invented after you’re thirty is against the natural order of things and the beginning of the end of civilization as we know it until it’s been around for about ten years when it gradually turns out to be alright really.
So true!

Those are the words of satirist and novelist Douglas Adams.

He went on to say:
Apply this list to movies, rock music, word processors and mobile phones to work out how old you are.

We no longer think of chairs as technology, we just think of them as chairs. But there was a time when we hadn’t worked out how many legs chairs should have, how tall they should be, and they would often ‘crash’ when we tried to use them. Before long, computers will be as trivial and plentiful as chairs (and a couple of decades or so after that, as sheets of paper or grains of sand) and we will cease to be aware of the things.

This excellent piece was featured in another blog--one of my favorites: The Technium -- Wired founder Kevin Kelly's blog. His work has been linked in this space before--a smart and always fun read.

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