The Second Eclectic

Technology changes how we relate to God and each other

Corporate profits no longer depend on a well-employed middle class--thanks to robots. 

Facial recognition is ready for Google Glass, and doctors will use it for patient histories, but are the benefits worth the costs? 

How will Internet-connected kitchen appliances track your activity? 

Is the brain just an imperfect computer? 

Can technology promote "human flourishing"? 

More questions than answers this week.

It’s Time to Talk about the Burgeoning Robot Middle Class” at Technology Review 


Robotics is divorcing human employment from corporate profits. Why use a brain trust when you can own a robot? Why pay an employee's yearly salary when you can pay a one-time cost for a robot, and own that robot? 

The latest Google Glass hack gives doctors the power of face recognition” at VentureBeat

Google Glass will use facial recognition software in medical settings to pull up files and medical charts about patients. Why not? Consider if a person is unconscious and brought into the ER. This way doctors can find out about a person without needing them to tell the doctor anything.

Bonus article here.

Will giving the Internet eyes and ears mean the end of privacy?” at The Guardian

The Internet is a mediated space/place. Everything in it is data. Everything in it is tracked or trackable. We of fail to grasp  this, or if we do, it’s easy to forget. So what happens when the Internet becomes embedded in every man-made object, from clothing to cars to kitchen appliances? What “the Internet of things” means for tracking human activity.

Here’s to the Misfits” at Christianity Today

Andy Crouch at CT explores 3 tech start-ups in Silicon Valley that are headed up by Christians who are using technology is pursuit of human flourishing.

Slaves to the Algorithm” at Aeon Magazine

Using chess as an analog to algorithms, this article reviews how algorithms are being employed (or will need to be) in autonomobiles, criminal parole administration, higher education like MOOCs, comment filtering, news aggregation, psychotherapy apps, and stock trading. It highlights the problems embedded in such algorithms and advocates for "algorithm auditors."

For more on algorithms, go here.