Not sure what this has to do with anything, but Flamin’ Bill Gates just wrote what I would call an op-ed for BBC news regarding the future of IT. Like his speech on the Internet, this seems a bit like the guy who just discovered the White Stripes and is now telling his buddies about it.
If you look at the most interesting things that have emerged in the last decade – whether it is cool things like portable music devices and video games or more practical things like smart phones and medical technology – they all come from the realm of science and engineering.
As a former IT guy, I can agree completely. However, I sometimes think or obsession with IT is wrong-headed and is actually hurting us — which is the source of my dislike of the OLPC project. Computer literacy, at it’s core, now defines our culture. But what about real literacy and the understanding that technocratic methods of technology dependence actually harm us. Whether it’s an unhealthy obsession with cellphones or the sense that if only the poor had computers and word processing software they would be lifted you have expectations that are too hard to meet.
Bill Gates and Nicholas Negroponte and the rest of the tech world thinkers know what’s up. We are moving inexorably to world defined by technology. Maybe this will strip away the animosity in our human relationships and finally render religion impotent — which I consider a noble and unstated goal of the modern mind — but I doubt it.
Anyway. Bill Gates. Heck of a guy.