Back to the Future

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In response to the two chapters “The Rise of the Centaurs” and “We, the Memorious”, I began to realize how truly important technology is today, and how it is becoming even more-so necessary as the future progresses. Clive Thompson hit the nail on the head when he said, “At their best, today’s digital tools help us see more, retain more, communicate more. At their worst, they leave us prey to the manipulation of the toolmakers,” (Clive, 6). I would normally shy away from anything new and foreboding; especially if people begin questioning if a machine is smarter than a human being. Overall though, we as a species and expanding our knowledge on technology and in turn, learning more and more about ourselves: patterns we take, psychology behind decision making, what we do and do not remember. It is honestly all about transformation.

Kasaparov and Deep Blue

This ties in to “We, the Memorious”. Humans have developed a machine that has the ability to record each and every action throughout a set household. This being said, it records everything so that we as people will be able to access a memory database. This includes the positive and negative events throughout a given day. However, this keeps frailties in memory from happening, allowing intelligence itself to grow. Clive states, “We face an intriguing inversion point in human memory. We’re moving from a period in which most of the details of our lives were forgotten to one in which many, perhaps most of them, will be captured. How will that change the way we live- and the way we understand the shape of our lives?” (Clive, 28). The note that really struck me was when Clive referred to a quote said by Faulkner: “The past is never dead. It’s not even the past.” I thought about this for a long time, trying to make sense of what he meant. If the past isn’t even the past, then what are the present and the future? It’s a constant repetition of itself.




kpyfrom's picture

I agree that technology is

I agree that technology is extremely important to today's day in age. Technology is incorporated in just about all aspects of our lives today it seems like. It makes we wonder what would happen, if we couldn't access all of the technology. And I loved your title. It reminded me of the Back to the Future movies, which they were all fantastic. If you haven't seen them you should check them out. Keep up the great work!

clscott's picture

Hi Valerie! I really like

Hi Valerie! I really like the last part about how the past doesn't exist. When I was in elementary school, I had the thought that there is no present, but a fine line between the past and future. The concept of the past repeating itself through the future is especially prevalent in the Tillman Hall argument; some argue that renaming it will hide the past and make it more likely to be repeated, while others argue that history was doomed to repeat itself because the name of the building was already changed once, and now there's discussion of changing it back to the way it was. Others say that if the name of the building is not changed, there will be more movements on campus in the future to change the name.

tpom13's picture



I really liked how you addressed how the computers help expand human memory. It is true computers may be more intelligent than humans, but that will only add to our overall knowledge as a species. It is also important to know that it was humans who made computers to begin with. They are the brain child of this generation, and they are helping more than hurting.
Great Job!