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School of Life: Who owns the future?

6th March 2013 · 7:30pm - 7:30pm

In person | Virtual event

 School of Life: Who owns the future?

The School of Life presents; Who owns the future? Jaron Lanier in conversation with James Bridle; Jaron Lanier is a technology inventor and philosopher who has been dubbed the prophet of the digital age. He coined the phrases ‘Virtual Reality’ and ‘digital Maoism’. His last book You Are Not A Gadget was a hugely influential and hotly debated critique of the ‘hive mind’. Tonight he makes a rare appearance in London to talk about his new book Who Owns the Future? with James Bridle.

; Digital technologies dawned with the promise that they would bring us all greater economic stability and power. That utopian image has stuck. But Lanier argues the efficiencies brought by digi-techs are having the effect of concentrating wealth while reducing overall growth. He predicts that as more industries are transformed by digital technologies huge waves of permanent unemployment are likely to follow those already sweeping through many creative industries.

 But digital hubs are designed on the principle that people don’t get paid for sharing. Every time we apply for a loan update Facebook use our credit cards post pictures on Instagram or search on Google we work for free says Lanier. He argues that artificial intelligence over a network can be understood as a massive accounting fraud that ruins markets. Past technological revolutions rewarded people with new wealth and capabilities. He will explain why without that reward the middle classes – who form the basis of democracy as he sees it – are threatened placing the future of human dignity itself at risk.

 Tonight Lanier will discuss his analysis of the deep links between democracy and capitalism and share his thoughts for how humanity can find a new vision for the future.

; Tickets £22

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