Who Owns the Future? Jaron Lanier's Book of Challenging Questions And Answers


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If you've never heard Jaron Lanier speak - you owe it to yourself to hear what he has to say about the future ramifications of the technology and product development choices we're making today. Guaranteed to twist your mind.

Who Owns the Future?

Jaron Lanier (You Are Not a Gadget) is one of the most influential thinkers of our time. Known as the father of virtual reality, he draws on his expertise and experience as a computer scientist, musician and digital media pioneer to predict the revolutionary ways in which technology has transformed our culture.

Lanier’s new book Who Owns the Future? reveals why our information economy is failing and how to revive it. Jaron has a collection of ancient and esoteric musical instruments – he thinks of musical instruments as the most refined user interfaces, and therefore the most profound information technologies ever created – and will bring one to play during his talk.

“At the bottom of Lanier’s cyber-tinkering is a fundamentally humanist faith in technology, a belief that wisely designed machines can bring us closer together by expanding the possibilities of creative self-expression…His mind is a fascinating place to hang out.”
Los Angeles Times

Here's more on Lanier, from a recent New York Times review by Janet Maslin, "Fighting Words Against Big Data" Click here to read The New York Times review of Who Owns the Future?

Who is Jaron Lanier?

He is a mega-wizard in futurist circles. He is the father of virtual reality in the gaudy, reputation-burnishing way that Michael Jackson was the king of pop. Mr. Lanier would undoubtedly be more of a household name if he were not a large, dreadlocked, anything but telegenic figure with facial hair called “mossy” in a 2011 profile in The New Yorker.

Lanier is a technology expert who dislikes what technology has become. “I’m disappointed with the way the Internet has gone in the past ten years,” he told me at one point. He added, “I’ve always felt that the human-centered approach to computer science leads to more interesting, more exotic, more wild, and more heroic adventures than the machine-supremacy approach, where information is the highest goal.”


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  • Cindy F S.

    Jaron had an open tone and was quite accessible with this subject matter. Great treat to hear him play the exotic instruments and duet with Robert Dick of flautist fame.

    May 16, 2013

  • A former member
    A former member

    Super excited! Thanks for organizing Cindy.

    1 · May 7, 2013

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