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“In times of change, the learner will inherit the earth while the learned are beautifully equipped for a world that no longer exists.” (Eric Hoffer; American social writer and philosopher; 1902-1983.)
This is Part 2 of a two-part IAE Blog entry about our rapidly changing technology. The previous entry introduced the idea of a technological singularity. The term technological singularity refers to some time in the future when computers become much “smarter” than people.
“Any sufficiently advanced technology is indistinguishable from magic.” (Arthur C. Clarke; British science fiction author, inventor, and futurist; 1917-2008.)
This is Part 1 of a two-part IAE Blog. Part 2 explores some of the educational implications of the coming technological singularity. It is available at http://i-a-e.org/iae-blog/entry/education-for-the-coming-technological-singularity.html.
The previous IAE Blog entry explored top-down approaches to attacking big problems. It illustrated this with the Apollo moon project and the War on Cancer. Both involved large amounts of funding distributed through a central source and coordinated in a top-down manner.
This blog entry considers the use of technology to attack some big problems by using a bottom-up or combined bottom-up and top-down approach. It focuses on improving education.
Jason Pontin is the editor-in-chief and publisher of MIT Technology Review. His 2014 TED Talk is titled: Can technology solve our big problems? (10/4/2014). Examples of really big problems include: global warming; an increasing shortage of fresh water; sustainability; worldwide poverty, hunger, disease, and education; and war and terrorism.
Here is Pontin’s summary of four conditions that he argues must all be present if technology is going to help solve really big problems in a top-down manner: