Are We Doomed Yet?
from the save-us,-open-society dept
An interesting article in Salon that seems to start out with the typical neo-Luddite doom and gloom scenarios of modern technology offering up all kinds of “bad” things. However, it changes gears midway and points out that, while it might sound sensible to “ban” various forms of dangerous knowledge, it would never work in practice. There are always going to be a few crazy people out there working on making more dangerous items from that knowledge. In the end, the way to protect ourselves is to be even more open. The vast majority of people out there don’t want to cause death and destruction. If more people had a very detailed understanding of the tools that lead to death and destruction, then everyone would be able to band together much more quickly to stop any such attempt as soon as it began. If, instead, the government bans the dissemination of such knowledge, then it will only be up to a very small group of people to stop an “attack” once it got through. Certainly a thought-provoking read, that takes the idea of “open source” and general openness much further.
Comments on “Are We Doomed Yet?”
This is the same argument that 2nd amendment advocates use. “When guns are outlawed, only outlaws will have guns.” Makes sense to me.
Entirely different. Knowledge and thigns are not the same. Making guns easy to get encourages gun crime (as you anyone but a blinkered idiot can see by lookiung at worldwide statistics). However nobody is hidign the knowledge about the technology involved in making guns.
What about mediocrity?
At any given time, most people are mediocre. Mediocre people, by definition, will surround themselves with people who agree with them; they will dismiss the views of people who know better. “Openness” does not solve this problem.