Once upon a time we were just

Once upon a time we were just plain people.  But that was before we began having relationships with mechanical systems.  Get involved with a machine and sooner or later you are reduced to a factor.  ~Ellen Goodman, "The Human Factor," The Washington Post, January 1987SS

The most important and urgent problems of

The most important and urgent problems of the technology of today are no longer the satisfactions of the primary needs or of archetypal wishes, but the reparation of the evils and damages by the technology of yesterday.  ~Dennis Gabor, Innovations:  Scientific, Technological and Social, 1970

Im struck by the insidious computer driven tendency

I’m struck by the insidious, computer-driven tendency to take things out of the domain of muscular activity and put them into the domain of mental activity.  The transfer is not paying off.  Sure, muscles are unreliable, but they represent several million years of accumulated finesse.  ~Brian Eno, Wired, January 1999p176

Weve arranged a civilization in which most

We’ve arranged a civilization in which most crucial elements profoundly depend on science and technology.  We have also arranged things so that almost no one understands science and technology.  This is a prescription for disaster.  We might get away with it for a while, but sooner or later this combustible mixture of ignorance and power is going to blow up in our faces.  ~Carl Sagan

The saddest aspect of life right now

The saddest aspect of life right now is that science gathers knowledge faster than society gathers wisdom.  ~Isaac Asimov, Isaac Asimov’s Book of Science and Nature Quotations, 1988

Western society has accepted as unquestionable a

Western society has accepted as unquestionable a technological imperative that is quite as arbitrary as the most primitive taboo:  not merely the duty to foster invention and constantly to create technological novelties, but equally the duty to surrender to these novelties unconditionally, just because they are offered, without respect to their human consequences.  ~Lewis Mumford

Imagine that the telegraph is an immense

Imagine that the telegraph is an immense long dog – so long that its head is at Vienna and its tail is at Paris.  Well, tread on its tail, which is at Paris, and it will bark at Vienna.  ~Author unknown, published in Brooklyn Daily Eagle, 1866 August 28distorted over the years as a long cat and for various instruments, but this is the first documented use, see quoteinvestigator.com/2012/02/24/telegraph-cat; variant commonly misattributed to Albert Einstein: You see, wire telegraph is a kind of a very, very long cat. You pull his tail in New York and his head is meowing in Los Angeles. Do you understand this? And radio operates exactly the same way: you send signals here, they receive them there. The only difference is that there is no cat.  (Thanks, Garson O’Toole of quoteinvestigator.com!)

It is a medium of entertainment which

It is a medium of entertainment which permits millions of people to listen to the same joke at the same time, and yet remain lonesome.  ~T.S. Eliot, about radio

Inventor a person who makes an ingenious

Inventor:  A person who makes an ingenious arrangement of wheels, levers and springs, and believes it civilization.  ~Ambrose Bierce, The Devil’s Dictionary

Soon silence will have passed into legend

Soon silence will have passed into legend.  Man has turned his back on silence.  Day after day he invents machines and devices that increase noise and distract humanity from the essence of life, contemplation, meditation…tooting, howling, screeching, booming, crashing, whistling, grinding, and trilling bolster his ego.  His anxiety subsides.  His inhuman void spreads monstrously like a gray vegetation.  ~Jean Arp

The factory of the future will have

The factory of the future will have only two employees, a man and a dog.  The man will be there to feed the dog.  The dog will be there to keep the man from touching the equipment.  ~Warren G. BennisDCQ

The system of nature which man is

The system of nature, of which man is a part, tends to be self-balancing, self-adjusting, self-cleansing.  Not so with technology.  ~E.F. Schumacher, Small is Beautiful, 1973