Silicon Valley visionary Jaron Lanier was among the first to predict the revolutionary changes the World Wide Web would bring to commerce and culture. Now, in his first book, Lanier offers this cautionary look at the way the Web is transforming our lives, for better and for worse. The current design and function of the web have become so familiar that it is easy to forget that they grew out of programming decisions made decades ago. The web's first designers made crucial choices with enormous-and often unintended-consequences. What's more, these designs quickly became "locked in," a permanent part of the web's very structure. Lanier warns that our financial markets and sites like Wikipedia, Facebook, and Twitter are elevating the "wisdom" of mobs and computer algorithms over the intelligence and judgment of individuals. This book is a deeply felt defense of the individual, from an author uniquely qualified to comment on the way technology interacts with our culture.--From publisher description.
What is a person?
An apocalypse of self-abdication
The noosphere is just another name for everyone's inner troll
What will money be?
Digital peasant chic
The city is built to music
The lords of the clouds renounce free will in order to become infinitely lucky
The prospects for humanistic cloud economics
Three possible future directions
The unbearable thinness of flatness
Digital creativity eludes flat places
All hail the membrane
Making the best of bits
I am a contrarian loop
One story of how semantics might have evolved
Home at last (my love affair with Bachelardian neoteny).
"This is a Borzoi Book"--T.p. verso.
Includes bibliographical references and index.
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