Technophobia: a talk at the Royal Institution

I’m going to be talking about technophobia, media panics and how technology really affects the mind and brain, next Tuesday at the Royal Institution in London.

The talk will be a trip through the history of technology scares – from Ancient Greece to Facebook, a look at how the modern media deals with concerns about new communications tools, and a round-up of what we actually know about the impact of technology on ourselves.

The evening will be MC’ed by Dallas Campbell and I am told there will be musical accompaniment.

Relax, I won’t be singing. No technology on earth can withstand my terrible voice.
 

Link to more information and tickets.

3 Comments

  1. Posted November 11, 2012 at 5:47 pm | Permalink

    Yes, but will there be dancing?

    Sounds like a great lecture, wish there would be a transcript available! Good topic; too bad the media does not separate the technology aspect from the other (detrimental) aspect. Having information that is constantly updated is great; the problem arises when it is an excuse for people to sit in one place 24/7, which is likely not a problem with books.

    A Dateline special pointed out that in the 1950s, parents would holler at their kids to come inside for dinner. Now, parents have to holler at their kids to get outdoors.

    As a Biologist, I only needed to read about one child at the beach who was angry that the sun was making his iPhone difficult to read, to know that being online all the time is far too easy these days.

    I don’t have the studies on hand (sorry) but in my field it is well known that people need to interact with nature to be fully healthy, and that sitting too much is terrible for your health. I also suspect that one day we might find that in-person interaction is at least marginally important for good interpersonal skills.

  2. Posted November 12, 2012 at 12:17 pm | Permalink

    I wish i could see you in action!! seems terrific!!
    Best!

  3. Aoyagi
    Posted November 14, 2012 at 10:21 pm | Permalink

    Sorry for not tweeting you instead, but my hatred for social networks is deep :)

    Anyway, here is something that might interest you: http://www.theregister.co.uk/2012/11/14/human_intelligence_degrading/ (in case you haven’t heard of it, which you probably have…)


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