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PredICTing the Future

Technological visions of the future generally come in one of two flavors. In a utopian dream, technology seamlessly integrates into the fabric of everyday life. On the other end of the spectrum lie visions of dystopia, often centered around the havoc a sentient artificial intelligence can cause when it inevitably determines that humans are our most significant threat. This essay attempts to illuminate a bridge between what is and what ought to be through a critical analysis of automation and technological innovation. We trace efforts to deskill labor, from early mechanization through current efforts to design a “future-proof” smart city. To do this, we examine automation through Haraway’s cyborg lens, the postmodernist assemblage of contradictory components. Who is benefitting from automation? Who is harmed by it? In following with the theme of our essay, we also follow up by asking, who ought to? To explore this question, we review efforts to build economic infrastructure from the bottom-up in a process that emphasizes upskilling rather than deskilling labor.

Doing theory as an information scholar

Having completed undergraduate work in one of the last four-field anthropology departments, we often say that the four-field approach has one foot firmly planted in the sciences (biology, archaeology) and the other in the humanities (culture, linguistics). Taken together, these four lenses are thought to enable the holistic perspective. Yet, I find myself more skepticalContinue reading “Doing theory as an information scholar”

Special Announcement

Greetings, If you follow my social media, then you are likely already aware. I’ve known for a few weeks, but I’ve been so busy I didn’t make time to write about it. Considering the announcement, I think it’s going to be important that I make regular contributions to this blog, so let’s start here. It’sContinue reading “Special Announcement”

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