Dedicated to debunking and rubbishing the hype, hoohah, bullshit and ballyhoo touted by information technology (IT), Internet and cyberspace 'pandits', self-styled 'consultants', the techno-deterministic myths of IT 'futurists' and cyber utopians by comparing actual outcomes against their claims made a decade or more back.
Friday, 8 September 2017
WE ARE HEADING TOWARDS A IT-MEDIATED DYSTOPIAN FUTURE
We are heading towards this dystopia and we can see it happening right now.
If you have dealt with helpdesk, customer support or whatever call centre agents, you will realise that they are following a standard script, with an "if, then, else" process of answers to your questions which the call centre agent must stick to, with all thinking, personal initiative and decision making denied by the system.
About two weeks ago, I banked in a cheque via a cheque deposit machine and I expected to see the sum reflected in my account balance within a few days.
When no funds appeared in my account after about a week, I called my bank's customer support call centre and asked about this payment and was informed that whilst the name of the recipient (I.E. me) written on the cheque was my full name - i.e. first-name, middle name and family name, however my alias was missing.
I then told the agent, "C'mon, I rarely use my alias and few people write my alias on cheques in my favour, so why now?"
The agent replied, "Sorry sir but the computer rejected the cheque because it did not have your alias".
By his reply, it seems that my bank has begun to scan cheques using character recognition technology, so I then told him, "A human handling clearance of the cheque would be able use their discretion to decide that I am the right person by my full name without my alias and clear the cheque, whilst your dumb computer system has more authority over human discretion".
On top of that, I had written my account number and contact phone number on the back of the cheque in the fields provided and because of my bank's dumb banking system which apparently scans the name of the recipient on the cheque and rejects the cheque if it does not exactly match the name recorded when opening the account.
Whenever I make withdrawals from this bank's ATMs it always asks me whether the sum I am withdrawing is my favourite withdrawal amount and even after saying "yes" to a particular sum, the system never presents my favourite sum to me as an option the next time I make a withdrawal.
All the agent could say is "Sorry sir, cannot do anything about that".
Well, this experience is just a small taste of things to come in the dystopian future to come.
Thanks, David Icke for this video. I cannot stand these information technology futurists, cyber-Utopians, conference speakers and starry-eyed or outright opportunist journalists in the IT media who slavishly promote such propaganda in their writings. I guess they have no choice when their publications' advertising revenue is falling, since they otherwise would be out of work sooner than later.
These naive cyber-Utopians believed that the Internet will "liberate" us from the "tyranny" of government control, well now we know how much it has begun to let the giant, oligopolistic or even monopolistic Internet-corporations to enslave us instead.
Not too long ago, these Internet corporations were "cute and cuddly" Silly Con Valley startups which have grown to dominate global Cyberspace and worse still to shape our thoughts, perceptions and opinions.
Also, just look at all those people going around with their faces buried in the smartphone screens to know where society, especially the younger generation is headed to - a "developed, knowledge-based economy by the Year 2020"? Pah! More like a generation who won't know how to jump start a car.
Some years back, I came across some youth who were trying to jump start a car with a weak battery and apart from not knowing how to connect the jumper leads correctly between battery terminals, they also did not have the common sense to turn off battery-draining accessories in the car, such as the cabin lights. I told them to turn all of these off, then properly connected the jump leads, told the doner car's owner to rev the engine and the car with the weak battery started. Lucky for them, I did not send them a bill for my professional services rendered.
If this is an example of our gadget-savvy, millennial generation who know WhatsApp and Facebook backwards but do not know how to jump start a car, I dread to think what the future of Malaysia will be like in 2020, let alone 2050.
By then, they may not even know how to wipe or wash their bum after defaecating or tie their shoe laces, since they will have quite probably have a robot doing that for them.