The Profound Fragility of Technological Civilisation


Facebook’s recent network faux pas and serial fall(s) from grace led to an observation of culture, technology and psychology in a world that is anything other than resilient to change or catastrophic disturbance:

Human beings are never quite so happy as when they double down on unsustainable or profoundly fragile and insecure systems that can be really quite easily extinguished as an unacknowledged axiom of their distributed function and presence. We gain value inversely to the risk and assume that because we attribute such value and gain such utility from these systems that they are and will forever be enduring components of our lives. The only actual enduring property here is the core existential risk and insecurity upon which we build the systems and everything – all derived commercial and industrial utility, all security and all value – is only what it is in regards to the ultimate and plausibly embarrassing fragility of the socioeconomic and technological networks, and of an underlying logic of hyper-inflating complexity interpolated with and dependent upon human fallibility, gullibility and insecurity.

Coda: Psychological factors are (also) interesting here and remain (as systemic blindspots) largely unexamined in the public domain.

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