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Chapter 11: Turn Signals Are the Facial Expressions of Automobiles (19 Apr 2005)
As I study the interaction of people with technology, I am not happy with what I see. In some sense, you might say, my goal is to socialize technology. Right now, technology lacks social graces. The machine sits there, placid, demanding. It tends to interact only in order to demand attention, not to communicate, not to interact gracefully. People and social animals have evolved a wide range of signaling systems, the better to make their interactions pleasant and productive. One way to understand the deficiencies of today's technologies and to see how they might improve is to examine the route that natural evolution has taken. You know the old saying that history repeats itself, that those that who fail to study the lessons of history are doomed to repeat its failures? Well, I think the analogous statement applies to evolution and technology: those who are unaware of the lessons of biological evolution are doomed to repeat its failures.
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