How Eight Technologies Made Us Human, 

Transformed Society, and Brought Our World to the Brink      

    Although we usually think of technology as something unique to modern times, our ancestors began to create the first technologies millions of years ago in the form of prehistoric tools and weapons. Over time, eight key technologies gradually freed us from the limitations of our animal origins.

    The fabrication of weapons, the mastery of fire, and the technologies of clothing and shelter radically restructured the human body, enabling us to walk upright, shed our body hair, and migrate out of tropical Africa. Symbolic communication transformed human evolution from a slow biological process into a fast cultural process. The invention of agriculture revolutionized the relationship between humanity and the environment, and the technologies of interaction led to the birth of civilization. Precision machinery spawned the industrial revolution and the rise of nation-states; and in the next metamorphosis, digital technologies may well unite all of humanity for the benefit of future generations.     Read more...


Human Nature in a Technological World

    In the contemporary societies of advanced nations, modern people enjoy an unprecedented level of comfort, security, nourishment, and health care—and on average they have longer life spans than any other population in human history. Yet these benefits are seriously compromised by a darker feature of our technological lifestyle: a rising tide of mental and physical disorders—including chronic anxiety, depression, sleeplessness, autism, ADHD, drug addiction, heart disease, and diabetes—that have spread like a plague over modern society.  Read more...


How Robots Are Destined to Create a New Kind of Human Society

    A new organism has emerged in our technological world. This organismthe robotis not a biological being but an electro-mechanical humanoid made possible by the physical achievements of the industrial revolution and the electronic achievements of the digital revolution. It is poised to effect profound change to every aspect of human society as thoroughly and as radically as the industrial revolution itself transformed human society over the past 250 years.  Designed to replace humans in the performance of a rapidly growing variety of tasks, jobs, and social roles, robots offer humanity both the possibility of a potentially limitless source of service, assistance, companionship, and leadershipbut also the threat of competition, displacement, and mortal danger.  Read more...

Copyright © 2019 Richard L. Currier, PhD. All Rights Reserved.