In reading Carr, I began to immediately think his ideas toed an Orwellian futuristic, 1980’s-esque line. Not so much in the totalitarian, rights-oppressing sort of way, but more in the influence and power of technology way. As Carr posits, the influence the Internet (and other technologies during their respective times) have had on the mental processes of us as human beings have manifested into a previously unthinkable reality. He cites how the mechanical clock completely revolutionized the way we conceived time while the idea of punctuality was born. Maps changed the view humans had on their world. The internet is currently in a similar state of transition; and how far from the precipice we are cannot be known except in hindsight.
When thinking about the influence of technology, I am reminded of the new movie I watched a couple weeks ago named Her. Not to give anything away, the plot-line centered around the protagonist (played by Joaquin Phoenix) who falls in love essentially with a computer. Of course, ‘she’ is far more than our conception of a computer. She was designed to be an adaptable and unique operating system that had the ability to learn and seemingly feel. I don’t want to give too much away but I wanted to point out that I do not think this sort of technology is eons away. We are closer than we think.
Who knows, maybe after ALL humans can become joined by marriage, the next civil rights push will be for the union of a lonely man and his operating system.