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How To Avoid A Fully Automated Future46:42
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Nicholas Carr says automation, all over, is turning us into zombies. Out of touch with the world. He’s with us.

In this Jan. 15, 2013, photo, Rosser Pryor, Co-owner and President of Factory Automation Systems, examines a new high-performance industrial robot at the company's Atlanta facility. (AP)
In this Jan. 15, 2013, photo, Rosser Pryor, Co-owner and President of Factory Automation Systems, examines a new high-performance industrial robot at the company's Atlanta facility. (AP)

Computer automation is moving in all over.  Computer apps and assists that move us through our days.  They tell us where to turn.  Hit the brakes before we do.  Run the machines at work.  Guide the tractor in the field.  The architect in design.  The pilot in the cockpit.  They fly the plane.  Automation can feel like liberation - from labor, drudgery, responsibility.  It is celebrated by many in Silicon Valley as the hyper-intelligent computerized future.  Is it good for humans?  Our skills?  Our souls?  This hour On Point:  Automation moving in, and what it means when humans defer to machines.
-- Tom Ashbrook

Guests

Nicholas Carr, journalist, technology and culture writer. Author of "The Glass Cage: How Automation And Us." Also author of "The Shallows," "The Big Switch" and "Does IT Matter?" (@roughtype)

From Tom's Reading List

Los Angeles Times: Nicholas Carr's latest anti-technology rant, 'The Glass Cage' — "Carr has two angles of attack: One is the familiar warning that robots are going to take all the jobs and leave us to starve; the other is that we are becoming so reliant on computers to automate even the most complex mental tasks that we are going to forget how to think."

The Verge: 'The Glass Cage' review: automation is making us stupid — "What I found more troubling than the existential effects of automation is the specter of unemployment looming over the book. Carr doesn’t focus on it as much, but it’s there as a corollary. If a job is so automated that it’s alienating, it’s also so automated that it requires very little skill — that is, if it hasn’t been automated entirely."

Forbes: Why It's Too Easy To Dismiss Technology Critics: Or, The Fallacies Leading A Reviewer To Call Nicholas Carr Paranoid — "Yes, some technology critics can go too far down the dystopian rabbit hole. But it’s a mistake and social disservice to use fallacious reasoning to dismiss the good ones as paranoid. "

Read An Excerpt Of "The Glass Cage" By Nicholas Carr

This program aired on September 30, 2014.

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