What Miracles New Tools Might Bring Us

What Miracles New Tools Might Bring Us

As humanity makes better tools, it’s imperative we continue to think about who the tools are for. Not what the tool does, but who benefits from the tools. I love me a cool gizmo, but let’s not get distracted at the cutting edge of invention. Let it not all be sucked up by corporate interest and soulless churn. I don’t want this stuff to be a gimmick. If the intent of the modern tech age is to work with computational workhorses, energy-intensive macro-systems like blockchain, A.I., and even the now ubiquitous high-speed internet and 4k streaming video, then it best be underpinning lofty goals. Let it make human lives easier, certainly, but let it actually make things easier—not more complicated. We want to improve human survival. Let us leverage these tools to feats beyond what humans can do.

A.I. can examine cells at scale. Could that help finally cure cancer? Our systems of traffic—moving cars across large distances—are rife with problems like congestion, accidents, and the counterintuitive ways more lanes don’t always help make travel time shorter. Could a person examine the millions, if not billions, of data points of wear and tear, bottlenecks, and peak times across an entire interstate highway? Probably not. But A.I. can. Oh, A.I. can do that all day.

Just how long has humanity dreamed of what we could accomplish with the right tools? I can’t say we’ve unraveled this snarl of our world—but each milestone is a win. And perhaps A.I. will mark the biggest forward movement we’ve yet taken. At the very least, I’m excited to see the loftiest attempts.

By |2024-02-29T18:28:31-05:00February 29th, 2024|DFN COLUMNIST|Comments Off on What Miracles New Tools Might Bring Us

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