I just finished reading these two books from Daniel Suarez. Daemon was a recommended read to me by an ex-colleague of mine, who gave me the book as an audio book. Audio books somehow take more time for me to read and I tend to listen to them at night till I am really sleepy that I dose off. This makes me having to do a bit of back tracking the next day. Such was the case with Daemon that I finally decided to get my hands on the book. The result was so enthralling that I had to read the follow up of Daemon – Freedom, just to see how the story ends.
Daemon is a technological thriller where a person creates this computer program which basically takes over the world, after the person who created it is dead. Without giving much away, this is the looking glass for what would happen to our ‘digital lives’ if suddenly it was hijacked by someone or something. What makes it different from the movie ‘The Net’ is the way this has been pieced together. We are all growing more and more dependent on technology day by day. Take shop keepers for example. Even some of the smallest of shops here in India tally up their bill totals using a calculator. Daemon weaves a murder mystery into something bigger, touching upon a variety of topics including global politics, cutting edge technology a bit of romance and much more. All in all a very nice read.
Technology continues to touch lives and change them. We woke up today to news that Egypt’s struggle had finally born fruit. President Hosni Mubarak had finally been overthrown and the military was placed in control for the time being. From a technological viewpoint the role of social media amongst the chaos in Egypt is interesting. The web is rife with stories how Social Media sites like Facebook and Twitter was used to spread news about and coordinate the first demonstrations on January 25th. Not only did the medium help convey news about the unravelling events, but even set the tone of reportage. Though not the starting point, the medium definitely acted as an accelerant. By the time the Egyptian government pulled the plug on the internet, it left no doubt that once again digital tools had been used to mobilise people.
This is certainly nothing new. We have seen time and again how normal people have become reporters by using services like Twitter and Facebook in times of crisis. With the increase in popularity of smart phones and their dropping prices, this is not really a surprise. Most of these phones come bundled with software that allows you to connect to these services conveniently.
But this is just one example. There are countless more. Everywhere you look you see new technology slowly and surely becoming indispensable. The cover story of the latest Economist issue talks about how great strides are being made in the realm of 3D printing. Think of the possibilities years down the line if this technology was available in our homes. Kids will be creating amazing 3D projects at home, things we can never imagine. On the other hand if perfected it would mean anyone could create anything they wanted. The entire concept of the product as we know it could be very different. Product designs could be purchased online and then printed out in working form from your printer. Sounds like science fiction today. And the cynics would point out that if price was not a factor, this technology would probably lead to rampant piracy here in India. To think of it, one would probably be able to print out a synthetic gun. The ramifications are endless. This blog is the next step to my free blogger blog wackywildweb, and continues to delve into how technology touches our lives. This blog will also synergise my other interests like advertising and photography as it develops. Stay tuned. Enjoy the read.