Wednesday, March 3, 2010

First Blood

I was talking to my daughter, trying to explain to her what the big fuss was about the Toyota case hearings in congress.
I explained to her that one of the things that determined our departure from the animal kingdom was the use of tools and how the history of human kind and the advancement of technology and science are closely intertwined.

We started using tools as a way of enhancing our physical abilities.
We used them to develop agriculture and manufacturing and then at the beginning of the 19th century something unusual happened: The first industrial revolution.

Tools not only enhanced our human abilities; tools started replacing humans all together.
For the first time in the human history machines took jobs away from the humans.
Then the “electronic” revolution took place.
Machines start performing mental task that once were reserved only for humans.
We are again being replaced by the machines in controlling all aspects of our life.

But there was a “holy” grail reserved only for humans: The decision making
Although the machines with their lightning speed and almost unlimited computation powers were doing all the number crunching, ultimately we were the ones that took the final decisions and kept everything under control... until now.

Toyota is saying that the computer had a glitch but don’t let the news full you.
The computer did not malfunction. The computer did exactly what was programmed to do; run the car at optimum performance.
It was the human that couldn’t keep up with the technology

Things are changing again. But this time is different. This time the machines are replacing us in the decision making process.
Basically we are not needed anymore. We humans have become obsolete.
Remember 2010: - They have drawn the first blood…