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How Did We Get Along Without Our Devices?


History is a funny thing. It catches us unawares.

When we view the current landscape, life makes sense, the technology in it makes sense. For the most part we understand how it all fits together. Smartphones, so-called AI, the web. We’re comfortable with how things work, not surprised really.

Thinking back a few years though, say 2005, it seems kind of “ancient.” Like, how did we get along really without our devices, our media, our tech?

Related: What Innovators See That Others Can’t

80 years ago today we lived in the same Earth, we did basically the same routine. Yet our view must have been incredibly different. Radio listeners that night expected to hear The Mercury Theatre but then, shocking interruptions, bulletins about a Martian invasion, an attack with poison gas and the fall of the world to aliens. Panic spread like wildfire. In New York City, people fled apartment buildings and ran into the streets, looking into the sky. In Pittsburgh a man stopped his wife from drinking poison, while she was yelling, “I would rather die this way than that.”

That was only 80 years ago. How easily we were duped. How foolish we must have been only a few short years ago. Surely, we’re smarter now. Or are we? What’s the equivalent of “War of the Worlds” today? The Singularity? Robot overlords? Fear of AI?

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