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Wednesday, 24 May 2017

Accelerationism

The FT of 16 May 2017 mentioned a new word, accelerationism, and its description fascinated me: “Imagine that technology and capitalism shift into a higher gear and speed up to cause the maximum disruption. That is the premise behind accelerationism, a fringe philosophy that went from a plot strand in a science fiction novel to an intellectual movement that is gaining influence around the world.”

This new term fits in yesterday's blog about Religion and Science being swapped between the Knowledge and Power domains of the 7 Belief systems. Faith and Technology may emerge instead. The combination of Money, Politics and Technology in the Power domain, could indeed cause maximum disruption to society.

Somehow, Faith, Philosophy and the Truth (in the Knowledge domain of the 7 Belief systems) seem unable to keep the balance in the "Knowledge = Power" equation. The revised Power domain feels potentially (much) stronger than the revised Knowledge domain. Hence, the potential of maximum disruption by Accelerationism.

The Guardian long-read of 11 May 2017 states that the term Accelerationism was introduced in the 1967 science fiction novel “Lord of Light” by Roger Zelazny. Guardian: “One plot strand concerned a group of revolutionaries who wanted to take their society “to a higher level” by suddenly transforming its attitude to technology.”

In my 23 March 2015 blog, I introduced the term “Technological Revolution of 1800-2100”. Technology has had a major impact on our societies: Mechanization (1800-1900), Automation (1900-2000), and Artificial Intelligence and Robotics (2000-2100). The pace of Technology within our society is clearly still accelerating.

Accelerationism is more than its underlying components like cybertopia and seasteading, Technology, Transhumanism, and perhaps even Urbanization. Accelerationism is an (extreme) belief in Capitalism (i.e., Money and Politics) and Technology at Warp-speed.

Last Sunday’s episode of Robbert Dijkgraaf’s documentary The Mind of the Universe, states that Technology and Nature are much less apart than we assume. Technology usually follows the principles of Nature and might thus be viewed as a man-made extension of Nature. While Technology is now mainly our servant, prof. Dijkgraaf predicts that Technology is likely to become a Master (and servant) in our lives.

I'm convinced that Accelerationism is the unstoppable way forward. I don't like this direction however. I'm reluctant to let Technology (over)rule my life, similar to the 2013 Sci-Fi movie Elysium. I'm convinced that Accelerationism will also create counter movements based on a belief in Freedom and Nature (e.g., off-the-grid).

Some may view Accelerationism a dangerous idea without realizing they're already participating. The ongoing miniaturization of Technology has already created new human addictions (e.g., FOMO, “social” media, texting). Soon we will be wearing (Google) “sun” glasses, similar to the current virtual reality headsets. After voice contact, human eye-to-eye contact is the next one to suffer. Talking sex robots forebode a further loss of human contact.

p:Machinery (1985) by Propaganda - artists, lyrics, video, Wiki-1, Wiki-2

Another hope feeds another dream
another truth installed by the machine.
A secret wish the marrying of lies
today comes true what common sense denies.