După ce am terminat de citit Sapiens, cartea în care Harari ne prezintă povestea evoluției noastre ca specie, societate și cum am ajuns să cucerim lumea, am pus pe lista de citit și Homo Deus, cartea care ne arată variantele pe care le avem noi ca specie, ce ne rezervă viitorul. O găsiți pe eMag la 36 lei, tradusă în română. Nu e o carte ușoară, dar la fel ca și prima, te absoarbe, și toate afirmațiile din carte sunt bazate pe studii, cifre.
Din punctul de vedere al autorului omenirea este acum la un moment de răscruce, a rezolvat în mare problemele mari cu care s-a confruntat de-a lungul timpului (bolile grave, foametea, războaiele), și suntem acum în perioada în care trebuie să decidem cum vrem să evoluăm ca specie.
Harari afirmă că vechile religii, dar curentele umaniste, respectiv liberalismul, socialismul și curentul evoluționist sunt afectate de progresul tehnologic foarte rapid.
Provocarea viitorului, pentru următoarele sute de ani, este îmbunătățirea vieții până la punctul în care vom ajunge să trăim pentru totdeauna, asemenea zeilor. Pericolul este reprezentat de ascensiunea inteligenței artificiale, care ar putea să ajungă atât de evoluată încât să considere inutilă specia umană. Nu să ne distrugă, ci să ne transforme în simplii manipulanți. Știu, am văzut astea în toate scenariile din filme, dar autorul nu prezintă posibilele viitoruri ca fiind certitudini, ci oferă mai multe variante de lucru, în funcție de cum ne vom comporta noi.
Și poate că multe dintre afirmații par absurde acum, dar el vine cu exemple clare. Ca idee, acum 20-30 de ani nu credeam că vom avea acces la toate cunoștințele lumii folosind internetul, că serviciile online vor știi mai multe despre noi decât noi înșine (hello Google, hello Facebook, Amazon), sau că vom vedea în timpul vieții noastre pe străzi mașini ce se conduc singure. Dar astea sunt deja lucruri obișnuite, iar dezvoltarea tehnologică e tot mai accelerată.
Nu mai zic de nanotehnologie, manipulări genetice, the sharing economy, ce s-au dezvoltat intens în ultimii 10 ani. Ipoteza autorului este că dezvoltarea tehnologică și știința vor schimba complet nu doar anumite industrii, ci stilul nostru de viață, democrația și lumea. Nu vorbim de viitorul apropiat, ci de zeci-sute de ani, dar schimbarea va veni.
Și câteva citate din carte:
“In 2012 about 56 million people died throughout the world; 620,000 of them died due to human violence (war killed 120,000 people, and crime killed another 500,000). In contrast, 800,000 committed suicide, and 1.5 million died of diabetes.23 Sugar is now more dangerous than gunpowder.”
“Every day millions of people decide to grant their smartphone a bit more control over their lives or try a new and more effective antidepressant drug. In pursuit of health, happiness and power, humans will gradually change first one of their features and then another, and another, until they will no longer be human.”
“People are usually afraid of change because they fear the unknown. But the single greatest constant of history is that everything changes.”
“Fiction isn’t bad. It is vital. Without commonly accepted stories about things like money, states or corporations, no complex human society can function. We can’t play football unless everyone believes in the same made-up rules, and we can’t enjoy the benefits of markets and courts without similar make-believe stories. But stories are just tools. They shouldn’t become our goals or our yardsticks. When we forget that they are mere fiction, we lose touch with reality. Then we begin entire wars `to make a lot of money for the cooperation’ or ‘to protect the national interest’. Corporations, money and nations exist only in our imagination. We invented them to serve us; why do we find ourselves sacrificing our life in their service.”
“In the past, censorship worked by blocking the flow of information. In the twenty-first century, censorship works by flooding people with irrelevant information. […] In ancient times having power meant having access to data. Today having power means knowing what to ignore.”
“You want to know how super-intelligent cyborgs might treat ordinary flesh-and-blood humans? Better start by investigating how humans treat their less intelligent animal cousins. It’s not a perfect analogy, of course, but it is the best archetype we can actually observe rather than just imagine.”
“True, hundreds of millions may nevertheless go on believing in Islam, Christianity or Hinduism. But numbers alone don’t count for much in history. History is often shaped by small groups of forward-looking innovators rather than by the backward-looking masses. Ten thousand years ago most people were hunter-gatherers and only a few pioneers in the Middle East were farmers. Yet the future belonged to the farmers. In 1850 more than 90 per cent of humans were peasants, and in the small villages along the Ganges, the Nile and the Yangtze nobody knew anything about steam engines, railroads or telegraph lines. Yet the fate of those peasants had already been sealed in Manchester and Birmingham by the handful of engineers, politicians and financiers who spearheaded the Industrial Revolution. Steam engines, railroads and telegraphs transformed the production of food, textiles, vehicles and weapons, giving industrial powers a decisive edge over traditional agricultural societies.”
“In fact, as time goes by, it becomes easier and easier to replace humans with computer algorithms, not merely because the algorithms are getting smarter, but also because humans are professionalising. Ancient hunter-gatherers mastered a very wide variety of skills in order to survive, which is why it would be immensely difficult to design a robotic hunter-gatherer. Such a robot would have to know how to prepare spear points from flint stones, how to find edible mushrooms in a forest, how to use medicinal herbs to bandage a wound, how to track down a mammoth and how to coordinate a charge with a dozen other hunters. However, over the last few thousand years we humans have been specialising. A taxi driver or a cardiologist specialises in a much narrower niche than a hunter-gatherer, which makes it easier to replace them with AI.”
“As of 2016, humankind indeed manages to hold the stick at both ends. Not only do we possess far more power than ever before, but against all expectations, God’s death did not lead to social collapse. Throughout history prophets and philosophers have argued that if humans stopped believing in a great cosmic plan, all law and order would vanish. Yet today, those who pose the greatest threat to global law and order are precisely those people who continue to believe in God and His all-encompassing plans. God-fearing Syria is a far more violent place than the atheist Netherlands.”
“Corporations, money and nations exist only in our imagination. We invented them to serve us; why do we find ourselves sacrificing our lives in their service? In the twenty-first century we will create more powerful fictions and more totalitarian religions than in any previous era. With the help of biotechnology and computer algorithms these religions will not only control our minute-by-minute existence, but will be able to shape our bodies, brains and minds, and to create entire virtual worlds complete with hells and heavens.”
“In the heyday of European imperialism, conquistadors and merchants bought entire islands and countries in exchange for coloured beads. In the twenty-first century our personal data is probably the most valuable resource most humans still have to offer, and we are giving it to the tech giants in exchange for email services and funny cat videos.”
“In the coming decades, it is likely that we will see more Internet-like revolutions, in which technology steals a march on politics. Artificial intelligence and biotechnology might soon overhaul our societies and economies – and our bodies and minds too – but they are hardly a blip on our political radar. Our current democratic structures just cannot collect and process the relevant data fast enough, and most voters don’t understand biology and cybernetics well enough to form any pertinent opinions. Hence traditional democratic politics loses control of events, and fails to provide us with meaningful visions for the future.”
Poza e de aici.
Homo Deus – O găsiți pe eMag la 36 lei, tradusă în română. Dacă ați citit-o să îmi spuneți cum vi s-a părut.