Wednesday, October 26, 2011
The Montreal Gazette is skeptical about tech.
[T]here’s nothing new about skepticism toward the impact of technology on the intellect. The first Waldorf school dates to 1919; it was founded in Germany by Rudolf Steiner. And, as a thoughtful essay in last weekend’s Le Devoir suggests, the philosopher Martin Heidegger, who died in 1976, must now be spinning in his grave.

Heidegger wrote at a time when our only electronic distractions were television, movies and radio. Their entertainment content (as distinct from news reports and documentaries), he suggested, present an artificial world that disconnects us from the real world. It’s like the light pollution that prevents from seeing the reality of the stars.

The essay, by a CÉGEP philosophy teacher, François Doyon, suggests that were Heidegger alive today he’d see the late Steve Jobs less as a cult-worthy modern Prometheus than as a glorified pusher of intellectual drugs on which we grow more dependent with usage: “Why bother wasting time learning things when (Jobs’s) iPhone can think for us?”
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