13/02/12

Our lives have become increasingly dependent on technology, especially in professional contexts. It all began with facilitating communication and now, thanks to computer programs we are able to perform complex calculations, automate processes or crunch vast amounts of data.

And as our world is becoming increasingly algorithmic, will there be a point when we humans will become entirely superfluous? Are we at a disadvantage in relation to machines?

Check out: In a Predictive, Algorithmic World, Are Machines Better Than You? 

 

Listen

Glossary

  • dumbfound – to make speechless with amazement; astonish
  • fall from grace – to lose favor; be discredited
  • abound – to occur or exist in great quantities or numbers
  • finite – having bounds or limits; not infinite; measurable
  • infer – to derive by reasoning; conclude or judge from premises or evidence
  • feasible – capable of being done, effected, or accomplished
  • wade –  to walk through water, snow, sand, or any other substance that impedes free motion or offers resistance to movement
  • merit – often, merits he state or fact of deserving: to treat people according to their merits.

 

Think about it

Based on the text answer the following questions. Leave your answers in the comments below!

  • Who predicted the onset of economic crisis before it started in 2008?
  • What factors call for increased usage of machines rather than humans?
  • What will be the role of a human in relation to machines in the future?
  • What will machines be incapable of doing according to the author?
  • What strategy should humans adapt to survive in a world increasingly dependent on machines?

 

Practice makes perfect

The sentences from 1 to 5 have been taken from the original text and paraphrased. The original sentences are right below each numbered sentence. Fill in the blank spaces so that each sentence means the same as the one above. Check your answers with the original text. 

 

1. An increase in the  number of variables sped up technology adoption.

As the number_______ , so _________of technology adoption.

 

2. We need to be ready to act as architects, regulators, and artists.

We need to assume ___________ and the artist.

 

3. If humans had infinite time and resources they would be able to perform  complicated and extensive lists of decision just as complex technologies are performing.

Complex technologies are ____­_____ that given ________ humans could perform.

 

4. Regardless of the evolution of predictive Technologies, humans will be always involved.

No________ how much predictive technologies _________ there will always be human ____________.

 

5. In order to survive it is necessary to find a proper vessel, learn its merits, and understand the environment for which it is designed.

The way ­­­­___________________, learn its merits, and understand the environment for which it is designed.

 

Fill in the blank space with the missing words

At least once ___ week I speak with a media director ___ spends millions ___ search through Google and puts his or her employee’s pensions into algorithmically controlled funds. However, when asked ____ the social media buying approach, the executive tells me that he or she has (and wants) humans controlling optimization and budget allocation. This statement always dumbfounds me. ___ we not living ___ the age of the autopilot, automated-financial trading, real-time bidding (RTB) and the Bowl Championship Series (BCS)?

Explore it more

 

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