Metatechnological skills

Metatechnological skills

January 27, 2014 (10y ago)

I've spent my life thinking about technology.

I’m perpetually fascinated about technology at every level of abstraction: from dismantling a Game-&-Watch at age 6, understanding circuit boards to winning the Apple-keynote-prediction-game.

I think of myself having a broad & deep understanding of the subject. I’ve spent my 10.000 hours (probably tenfold) reading Vinge, Kurzweil, Kelly, Stross, Diamandis, Sterling & Gibson + Gizmodo, The Verge, Engadget, Wired and just about every publication on the subject. I know where we come from, have my finger on the pulse, and know what’s on the horizon.

Instead, I’ve been developing subjective, philosophical, global and perhaps unifying theory of what technology is and what it means to humanity.

Sharing this vision is a long project, hardly limited to a blog post, keynote presentation or even book. It is a conversation already years in the making. One that will require onboarding collaborators from industry, policy and education. One long, uphill battle, where the object of study is literally the fastest-growing organism in the history of humanity, of which we have no clue what it is.

The way I see it, technology is a layer of humanity: one that enables us to shape our environment, our bodies and our reality. Because of this, I we have the responsibility to think critically about the role technology plays to the individual (“which social network should I subscribe my newborn child to?“) and society (“should the state mandate personal gene sequencing for all citizens?“).

From the recent explosion in information and communications technologies, a handful of Silicon Valley Darlings suddenly have more cultural clout than any organization in the past. A dozen companies are feeding our unlimited desire to search and share while building data warehouses, pulling fiber and launching Wi-Fi balloons to ensure no spot of the globe remains disconnected. Noble goals from organizations without actual track records.

Suddenly, we’re uncomfortably babysitting our two-year-olds on tablets, conveniently managing pangs of guilt for doing so.

Suddenly, we’re being drawn into the AMZN/GOOG delivery drone race, with headlines recollecting plots straight out of science fiction films.

Suddenly, selling your startup to a Valley Darling is the new MBA because eyeballs matter more than academics.

I’m not a bitter Luddite raising my fist demanding the dissolution of our opt-in overlords. I thrive in this otherworldly convenience offered by a technological stack of hyperconnected apps, devices and platforms. I’m acutely aware of how even the technological research foundation I’m building benefits directly from ubiquitous Facebook logins, cheap cloud hosting and universal Skype calls.

Instead, I’m attempting to raise an enduring global conversation around the implications of accelerating change.

That’s why I’m building a foundation, enlisting the smartest thinkers I can get hold of.

That’s why I’m building virtual communities around the subject.

That’s why I’m traveling to places like Singularity U and THNK, networking with the brightest people on the subject.

I want to use this website towards a few distinct (yet overlapping) goals:

  • To challenge implicit assumptions about our current technological hegemony.
  • To expand the perception of what technology means.
  • To highlight the use of technology in unlocking genius.
  • To share the best of what we are building over at Envisioning.
  • To develop conscience around metatechnological skills (or: skills that better prepare us for the inevitable).

Thank you for your support.