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August 23rd, 2003 - Open Knowledge

Aug. 23rd, 2003

01:39 am - Rise of the machines....

some guy wrote:


It started when I read Marshall Brain's Robotic Nation. (I have mixed feelings about Brain himself -- he is full of fascinating ideas but sometimes demonstrates a tenuous grasp of economics.) After much speculating, he concludes,

"...The arrival of humanoid robots should be a cause for celebration. With the robots doing most of the work, it should be possible for everyone to go on perpetual vacation. Instead, robots will displace millions of employees, leaving them unable to find work and therefore destitute. I believe that it is time to start rethinking our economy and understanding how we will allow people to live their lives in a robotic nation..."

I thought hard about this and ran the idea by some of my friends.

"Technology," they told me, "has always made some jobs obsolete. And new (and better) jobs have always sprung up to replace them. Quit your worrying." To me, this argument carries the same intellectual heft as the idea that "the stock market always goes up in the long term." I accept its truth as historical fact, but I see no reason to accept it as inexorable truth. Indeed, I think this question (the technology/jobs one) is fantastically important.


To which I responded:Collapse )

11:45 pm - Internet Audio Programs?

What online audio programs do you like? Here's a few that I've enjoyed in the past:

This American Life with Ira Glass. Slice of life vignettes of quirky Americana.
Mises Institute recorded lectures.
Fresh Air with Terry Gross. Interviews with authors, actors, musicians, politicians. Music and film reviews.

What else would you recommend?

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