Information revolution

“The history of life, as I (Stephen Gould) read it, is a series of stable states, punctuated at rare intervals by major events that occur with great rapidity and help to establish the next stable era.”

Are we living in one of these rare intervals now?

“An interval characterized by the transformation of our ‘material culture’ by the work of a new technological paradigm organized around information technologies. ”

“Biology, electronics, and informatics seem to be converging and interacting in their applications, in their materials, and more fundamentally, in their conceptual approach.”

“The core of the transformation we are experiencing in the current revolution refers to technologies of information processing and communication.”

“What characterizes the current technological revolution is not the centrality of knowledge and information, but the application of such knowledge and information to knowledge generation and information processing/communication devices, in a cumulative feedback loop between innovation and the uses of innovation. ”

“There is a close relationship between the social processes of creating and manipulating symbols (the culture of society) and the capacity to produce and distribute goods and services (the productive forces). For the first time in history, the human mind is a direct productive force, not just a decisive element of the production system.”

“Computers, communications systems, and genetic decoding and programming are all amplifiers and extensions of the human mind.

What we think, and how we think, become expressed in goods, services, material, and intellectual output, be it food, shelter, transportation and communications systems,computers, missiles, health, education, or images.

The growing integration between minds and machines, including the DNA machine, is ……fundamentally altering the way we are born, we live, we learn, we work, we produce, we consume, we dream, we fight, or we die.”

Castells, “The Rise of the network society” , p28 -31