In our NextNature event BVPS (May 2008), Kevin Kelly spoke of technology as the 7th kingdom of life: a form of evolution whithout the nasty side–effect of dying (Every object ever made, is still being made today). To prove and illustrate this, he showed evolutionary schemes of armor helmets and cornets (by Niles Eldredge) from the day of their invention until today. The video above does something similar. Having the overview of an evolutionary process, helps us learn from the past and think into the future. But what if man is blinded by the new and the next?
Embracing progress, man causes technology and its products to evolve into better "beings". Yet in the now, technology is very depenant of its slaveholder. The question is; for how long will it be this way? For as technologic evolution continues, the next natural leap is inevitable: communication devices will get themselves organised and in return carry their unsuspecting owners in the pocket.
Related: Evolution in the Bathroom | Handsets get taken to the grave | Tribal Communication Technology | Phone Tooth | Crackberry Addicts
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As you, I believe in gradual (earth time) change, but it could be accelerating with the speed of our dependency. And if it is not the technological devices that design our behaviour; then there's that network of everything wanting to communicate with everything else. The interconnection of everything (communicational objects, people, households, traffic, cities, countries,...) is driven by code and code exists to have things calculated way faster than a brain ever could. - So no matter if it will be gradually or on a big bang moment that we come to realize man's addiction of technology; it will cause future change in a fast way, for better and worse. And worse would be: <em>a next nature we deserve written in the code used by technology</em>; having reproduction whithout sex and never having the ability to die. 8)
Koert van Mensvoort
It is interesting how the idea of devices gaining consciousness is usually projected in the future: Some special moment, or day, when it all changes, because the devices have ‘become consious’. - I think this is largely a caricature. I wouldn’t expect any very special moment – or day – on which everything is different. Instead things are developing gradually, so slowly that you don’t even notice the change. Meanwhile, the things we are designing are already designing us. Yesterday, today and tomorrow. - As far as there is a day of sudden consciousness, I would expect it to be a shock in our own consciousness. A sudden realization of our dependence with the technological world. Maybe that is what you meant. At least we can be sure of one thing: we will get the next nature we deserve.