Author(s): Nicholas Carr
Mathematics & Science | No Category
In The Glass Cage, leading commentator on technology and culture Nicholas Carr shows how automation - in the form of decision-making algorithms - now permeates every aspect of our lives and the radical effects this is having on our ability to learn and make decisions. In May 2009 an Airbus A330 passenger jet equipped with the latest 'glass cockpit' controls plummeted 30,000 feet into the Atlantic. The reason for the crash: the autopilot had routinely switched itself off. In fact, automation is everywhere - from the thermostat in our homes and the GPS in our phones to the algorithms of High Frequency Trading and self-driving cars. We now use it to diagnose patients, educate children, evaluate criminal evidence and fight wars. But psychological studies show that we perform best when fully involved in a task, while the principle of automation - that humans are inefficient - is self-fulfilling. The glass cockpit is becoming a glass cage. In this utterly engrossing expose, bestselling writer Nicholas Carr reveals how automation is affecting our ability to solve problems, forge memories and acquire skills.
Rather than rejecting technology, Carr argues that we must urgently rethink its role in our lives, using it to enhance rather than diminish the extraordinary abilities that make us human.
A panoramic expose of the decision-making software running our lives - and how it is changing us all.
Nicholas Carr is the author of The Shallows: What the Internet Is Doing to Our Brains, a 2011 Pulitzer Prize nominee and a New York Times bestseller, as well as two other influential books, The Big Switch: Rewiring the World, from Edison to Google (2008) and Does IT Matter? (2004). His books have been translated into more than 20 languages. (www.nicholascarr.com)