#10: Enhance Human Experience, Don’t Replace it

NextNature.net
February 6th 2012

Part 10 in the 11 part series Anthropomorphism and Design.

The hidden danger with interactive products is that they will become so good at fulfilling our needs that they start to replace actual humans. This is not a futuristic scenario: In an increasing number of locations, from supermarket self-scan checkouts to online bookstores, automatization has replaced human contact. Eventually this may lead to us becoming alienated from other people, which seems to contradict today’s rapidly increasing communication possibilities. Anthropomorphic products have the potential to support, stimulate and enhance human contact, but they may also eliminate it.

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Siri Beerends: I really embrace the idea that viruses can teach us a lesson in modesty. It is necessary that our position as the dominant species on the planet is being challenged. I also agree that it is a mistake to think that we are becoming Gods. But unfortunately, this is actually what is happening now. Corona doesn’t teach us to be modest, it teaches us how we can -as quickly as possible- go back to business as usual: saving our capitalistic economy.

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