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The propaganda of innovation

December 28th, 2014 · 4 Comments

http://www.foreignaffairs.com/articles/142590/james-surowiecki/thinkers-and-tinkerers

The heroic tales of innovators are misleading us: we can deduce almost without looking that the deepest core of innovation must spring from mind-sources more sophisticated than economic motivations, profit.
The real second coming of innovation needs to come to a postcapitalist society. The impulse to innovate will come from developed self-consciousness and its deeper level of creativity.
We lose a lot of talent to the capitalist degradation of creative minds. Many innovaors refuse on principle to participate in capitalist greed-mills

Tags: General

4 responses so far ↓

  • 1 NK // Dec 29, 2014 at 9:29 am

    Hello

  • 2 NK // Dec 29, 2014 at 9:35 am

    As Michael Lind points out, the fundamental breakthroughs happened earlier…way before the “Steve Jobs” era. They were directly related to government driven research. I would never point to Silicon Valley as a paragon of “innovation.” Most of what comes out of there are just shallow money-making schemes (Uber, AirBNB, etc.). Everybody seems to have some love affair with Google when, in the grand scheme of things, it’s just a search engine. Don’t get me wrong, these products make my life easier, but I’m never going to confuse these with the greatest products of the human mind:

    “Apart from a revival of oil and gas production in the U.S., the economy’s main area of comparative strength has been technological innovation. The rise of self-driving vehicles and the “internet of things” are promising developments. But these mostly involve the extension of existing information technology to new sectors. The American tech economy has been living on intellectual capital accumulated before the 1980s, when the Defense Department funded the early breakthroughs in information technology. Compared to earlier breakthroughs like transistors and satellites, most of today’s innovations are trivial and contribute little or nothing either to living standards or national industrial power: “Hey, give me a billion dollars for my app that tells you when to pick up your laundry!””

    http://www.salon.com/2014/07/12/the_american_century_is_over_how_our_country_went_down_in_a_blaze_of_shame/

  • 3 nemo // Dec 30, 2014 at 10:34 am

    A lot of innovations aren’t even taken up: a non-technological example: the teleomechanists and their approach to evolution
    (NK had a quote on that at The Gurdjieff Con)

  • 4 NK // Dec 30, 2014 at 11:10 am

    Right…but I wanted to keep this discussion within the context of the articles…Steve Jobs and all of these people are overrated.

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