When I got to the Internet, the streets were already set . It is true that international brands had not yet invaded the main street, nor had department stores managed to put doors to the countryside by building shopping centers on the outskirts of the city, but essentially everything was there.
The children still played alone in the chat rooms, the old shopkeepers ran their websites based on static htmls and naivete was still a meteorological phenomenon: an anticyclone, a long summer that invited us to think that everything had to be done. Enrique Dans, of course, was already part of the landscape .
From afar, Dans was that type of character who, drunk on technology, had proposed to live “carried away by the changes” that the world was about to bring us. He was the spitting image of the overly passionate technologist, the vital early adopter , the great internet groupie .
The modern equivalent of those explorers who, fed up with the boredom of the academy, set out to discover terra ignota while being looked down upon from the cafes and clubs where society moved in .
It was never true, of course. In reality, that image of Dans as a fatal fan of new technologies could only be sustained if you had not read his work , if you built his portrait by dint of a cheap headline and a decontextualized tweet.
But as Bacon said in his De dignitate et augmentis scientiarum , “it distorts, that something remains.” And something remained.
It is enough to take a look around the net, to discover that even people like me, who for years have read a good part of the things that I published daily on the blog, have difficulties to remove that halo of (somewhat) morbid neophilia from the figure of a rigorous and passionate teacher who, moreover, has been fundamental in the development of the Spanish internet.
So reading ‘ Living in the Future ‘ is both intellectually stimulating and a fantastic surprise .
The end of human civilization
We could say that ‘ Living in the future ‘ is, to paraphrase Irving Kristol, what happens when the world of technology comes face to face with reality . And yet, despite much of the climate literature hitting bookstore shelves this year, it is especially hopeful.
This is very clear in the book. If we look at the history of humanity, he writes in ‘Living in the future’, “the fundamental determinant for the adoption of technology was always the same: that, when evaluated by a generally simple, one-dimensional and short-term standard , it was capable of offer a certain efficiency gain. ”
That is to say, ” if technology allowed something to be done , that something was not in some way outrageously contrary to ethics, morals or good customs or if, despite being so, it could be done without being too noticeable, it was done “. And, of course, of those powders, these muds.