Reggio Emilia: 1619 curriculum
In the world of retrograde, this month marks the end of the first decade of a new millennium, with many people moving past the challenges of post-industrialism and toward the more utopian futures of the 21st century.
But what does it mean to be retrograde?
And what does that mean for the future of technology?
As we look to the future, this question has come up repeatedly: is it time to retire retrograde software?
To answer that, I spoke to some of the key thinkers who have been working on these questions, including Paul Romer, a professor at the MIT Sloan School of Management and author of the book Retrograde: How Technology Is Changing the World and What We Can Do About It.
Romer says the idea that we’re going to be ready to retire all of our technologies is a myth.
But he cautions that this isn’t necessarily the case, because our technologies are still evolving.
“You might be able to get into the habit of getting up in the morning and working in the office all day, but we’re not going to stop evolving,” he says.
And there are some steps that we can take to make sure that we stay on top of these challenges.
For instance, Romer points to the need to continue investing in data science and artificial intelligence.
“As the economy becomes more and more automated, we have to make a commitment to keep learning, to keep pushing the envelope and to push forward,” he explains.
This kind of thinking has been building momentum for a while, and one of the big drivers of this push to continue pushing forward has been an emerging consensus among computer scientists and engineers that technology should be more transparent and open.
Romers research on this topic has shown that openness is one of several things that can be used to help create more sustainable, equitable, and effective technology.
“In a lot of ways, we are the only group of people who have the power to create change and the capacity to shape it.
That’s really the key,” Romer adds.
For example, a group of researchers recently developed a software tool that allows users to easily identify software defects and make changes to improve the software’s performance.
And one of its most important components is an interface to the software that lets users identify their own defects and improve the performance of their own software.
“If you know exactly what you’re doing, you can quickly and easily improve the quality of the software,” says Romer.
This same approach has been applied to the art of video game design.
“Video games are an incredibly complex industry, and the most important thing is the quality and the execution,” says Scott Siegel, who is the CEO of Sideshow.
“The people who design games should be able do it the way they want to.”
In this way, the art form itself has been built on openness and transparency, he says, and we should strive to bring that to all of the technology we develop.
It’s worth noting that this is not a new view.
“It’s the kind of thing I’ve been arguing for decades, that you don’t need to stop doing the things that you are doing because you have to have some kind of an edge,” says Siegel.
And for this reason, he is a strong supporter of open standards.
“I think we’ve had a long, hard struggle to achieve a standard that allows the technology to interoperate with the real world,” he argues.
“So, it’s important to continue to create the standard that will allow us to do that, and that’s what we’re doing with open standards.”
The next step, of course, is to continue exploring how we can use these ideas to improve our technology and create better lives for our children and grandchildren.
“We’re going in the right direction,” Romers says.
“There’s lots of room for improvement, but there’s also a lot we can learn.”