Back before the dot com bust when application productivity used to require less beta testers and more hardware worked out of the box, it was all about the software and computing was a lot more simple. In retrospect, Bill Gates was not so much a baron of monopoly as the conscientious father of computing as a pastime and not a 24/7 prison of social media life. He had hoped what was fun and creative would not dominate our lives and turn us into the bots of connectivity we are today. Fast forward a dozen years since and what has PC tech become? An E cloud cover where the art of the machine has overtaken our humanity.
After the heyday of video gaming and superior software half a dozen years into the new millennium, there was an ominous effort to downsize digital media formats and gadgetize. At first it seemed a green way to conserve PC manufacturing. But what this was was a reflection of a way of thinking that wishes to bind net ubiquity to a cyberspacial whole. And followers of this credo expect a grand vision where technology supplants the role of the human animal in the affairs of the heart, mind and soul. A future shock where we will be rendered obsolete by the wild growth of machines which will somehow thrive on their own without us.
This describes the theme of the Singularity where technology becomes the Big Brother of nature's design. But its disciples seem to have forgotten the nuts 'n bolts reality of electricity and the grid that powers our world. The only way a monolithic tech culture and society could operate on its own is if Nicola Tesla's wireless towers of free voltage were available to machines like the air we breathe. While communication is wireless via satellite, our gadget drone globe still must be plugged in to work. To believe otherwise is to debate silly sci-fi pretension. The very idea of tech immortality is foolish without the infinite juice to charge it.
Fact is, that in a world dominated by soulless machines, more electricity needed for their function would only add to the parasitic decay of our planet's ecosystem. While most would admit to the sources of man made climate change, few have considered the effects of electrical pollution on an earth whose chaotic and shifting magnetic field has been compromised by more dirty energy than just fossil fuel. With so many machines plugged in all around us, could international inclement weather be driven by more than carbon emissions? Is too much electric tech causing a hot and cold fever on this fragile superball magnet spinning in space?
As the minds of millennial thinkers whose inventions mold everyday lives lose touch with conventional wisdom and border on technocratic fantasy, it is time to reevaluate the direction the computer industry is headed. When software was king, we were too busy having a good time with friends and family to be tethered to gadgets and lose touch with normal human interaction. Now that computing has been forcibly streamlined as a static miniature forum mostly to communicate and consume media, it separates us all from a sense of traditional community and all other forms of interaction suffer away from the attraction of bits and bytes.
While keepers of the cloud are at one with business machine deification and restless consumer masses waste communication age overkill on millennial pop culture texts about Kim Kardashian's cartoon posterior, we need to devise a way off this Big Blue Marble if and when it ever becomes unlivable. Technology does not serve the public good if it inspires unhinged tech geeks to treat PC machines as God like or has us preoccupied with trivial things that don't matter. To survive disinformation of our own folly, we can't trust in an E culture that thinks like robots to save us. Outside the box tech has strayed too far from reality to be credible.