The human use of human beings summary

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the human use of human beings summary

The Human Use of Human Beings: Cybernetics and Society by Norbert Wiener

Only a few books stand as landmarks in social and scientific upheaval. Norbert Wieners classic is one in that small company. Founder of the science of cybernetics—the study of the relationship between computers and the human nervous system—Wiener was widely misunderstood as one who advocated the automation of human life. As this book reveals, his vision was much more complex and interesting. He hoped that machines would release people from relentless and repetitive drudgery in order to achieve more creative pursuits. At the same time he realized the danger of dehumanizing and displacement. His book examines the implications of cybernetics for education, law, language, science, technology, as he anticipates the enormous impact—in effect, a third industrial revolution—that the computer has had on our lives.
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Casually Explained: Human Beings

The Human Use of Human Beings is a book by Norbert Wiener, the founding thinker of cybernetics theory and an influential advocate of automation; it was first .
Norbert Wiener

The Human Use of Human Beings

The Human Use of Human Beings is a book by Norbert Wiener , the founding thinker of cybernetics theory and an influential advocate of automation ; it was first published in and revised in The text argues for the benefits of automation to society; it analyzes the meaning of productive communication and discusses ways for humans and machines to cooperate, with the potential to amplify human power and release people from the repetitive drudgery of manual labor, in favor of more creative pursuits in knowledge work and the arts. The risk that such changes might harm society through dehumanization or subordination of our species is explored, and suggestions are offered on how to avoid such risk. The word cybernetics refers to the theory of message transmission among people and machines. The thesis of the book is that:.

The Human Use of Human Beings: Cybernetics and Society

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This idea and many others have become pervasive through the sciences especially computing and biology. For Norbert, technologies were viewed as applied social and moral philosophy. His personal philosophy itself being rooted in existentialism, instead of the formal analytical philosophy of his day. He strongly prized himself on being an independent and knowledgable intellectual, not affiliating with any political, social or philosophical group. He did not accept funds from governments , agencies, corporations or any other groups that would or could compromise his independence and honesty.

Please enable JavaScript to view the comments powered by Disqus. Cybernetics is a field of study that arises out of information theory and automation. The presentation in that book is technical and not easily accessible to a layman. Wiener sought to popularize the ideas presented there in this book. The rise of statistical mechanics and the discovery of entropy lead scientists to world view of indeterminacy and contingency. In such a universe chaos is more likely than order.


  1. Donny A. says:

    “We are not stuff that abides, but patterns that perpetuate themselves. A pattern is a message.”

  2. Donatien D. says:

    The works of philo complete and unabridged new updated edition rejoice and be glad pope francis

  3. Freddie B. says:

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  4. Kristy S. says:

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  5. Dominic K. says:

    Le Guin wrote in the same era in her exquisite meditation on the magic of real human communication.

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