debra walker
Some thoughts from the studio

October 2016
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Inaugural blog
Filed under: General
Posted by: site admin @ 1:32 pm

With a new website comes this new blog. I decided my first post will be an update of what I have been up to since 2010….when I ran for supervisor in District 6….and lost.

I am painting all the time.

I have also had the good occasion to start working on events…movies….films….prototyping projects with the great folks from LOCAL 16. One of those was a project with a big tech company. Let me say that I have learned a lot about how the tech industry works. My thoughts here are based on experience and time spent.

Technology has no filter. What I mean is that there is no one saying..this is a good idea…this is bad idea….no directional evaluation and no ethical assessment of any kind going on as ideas became reality. There are so many examples to draw from. Drones, drone delivery, google glass and google barge, airbnb and all of these car and parking services, healthcare devices. All sorts of devices connecting you to everywhere.

It used to be that government was involved in R and D for most of this kind of innovation. New communications, new drugs, new flying things all have been regulated through dozens of agencies. This was not just about regulating, these professionals and experts also did a filtering of things to assess if it, really, in the big picture, is good for us. And once that happened - then these agencies made sure people were following the rules. And generally also paid attention to the consequence and ramifications. Like parenting a child, government really does need to come in and provide these regulations, ethics, etc.

Then the internet was born…..where everything is a free for all.

My experience (a limited experience granted) was that every single idea was given full weight. No one listened to any one else. It was go forward until you are stopped. Something that may well have been a good idea to flush out was implemented fully as is…..given the full weight of investment, time, effort….completed….and then everyone looked around at each other and asked …”what is this?” A question asked by many at the start. Ultimately the whole project was canned. I mean tossed. Millions and millions wasted. Oh sure, there were jobs, there was money thrown around the city…..but is this really how it goes? Is this really how human kind progresses?

I came out of that experience really believing even more than i did going in, that technology can be a bubble, with very little good sense beyond being able direct the big money from the you and I to a few gazzilionaires. Little crumbs thrown around here and there. But mostly it is a poker game. Or a pyramid scheme. Everyone hoping to get in and out at the right time. How is that progress? What have we gained? Who is guiding the barge?

Immediate access to everything in the world—-I guess that is the good part. But just like my overwhelming collection of photos I’ve taken and amassed over the past decade….who is supposed to be making sense of it all? I mean who is charting this course? All of the R&D money that used to be regulated and directed through various governmental and expert entities is now controlled by big tech companies. And there is no guide but the market. Big tech giants are doing the R and D for our future. With no guiding light other than what will make more money.

We are screwed if this doesn’t change.

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