The online world reminds me of President Obama. It has much to recommend it, but fervent disciples have vastly oversold its benefits and sugar-coated its shortcomings. We must always remember that the Web is a human invention and therefore shares all its creators’ tragic flaws. Garbage In, Garbage Out, even if the Garbage passes across millions of monitors in a second.
The apostate techie Jaron Lanier has been thinking for a while about the dark side of the online world, and he’s put his thoughts down in a book that’s hard to read–he is not a natural writer–but too important to ignore.
My review of You Are Not a Gadget appeared in last Sunday’s Dallas Morning News. Also, via The FabSage, here’s Lanier’s chat with writer Chris Hedges, touching on political topics not covered in the book.