Notes for a session on Luddite Technologists


I threw these down to prep for a session I held at Foo Camp in June 2012. I didn't follow the notes that precisely, and I suspect the session wound up less Luddite than the notes, but these may be of interest to people with similar questions.

Often find those deeply involved in technology are its most coherent skeptics.

"All Hail King Ludd" - Ned Ludd destroyed a stocking (knitting) frame in 1779, and people said afterward of broken machines that "Ned Ludd did it". Led to 1811-12 refrain "All hail King Ludd" and rebellion. (Are programmers the weavers of today?) Also wove into Robin Hood legend.

19th century traditions including Thomas Carlyle, John Ruskin, William Morris.

Broad spectrum:

  • Programmer by day, Prepper by night

  • Peak Oil folks

  • Environmentalism

  • Food and health issues

  • Reviving lost and old technologies (Moxon vise)

  • Neanderthal hand-tool woodworkers often programmers

  • Aesthetics - Steampunk, Society for Creative Anachronism, Renaissance Fairs, power of retro generally.

  • Making

  • Singularity and transhumanism make some people vomit - explicit humanism response

  • Waldorf / Sloyd - programmers sending children to media-free Waldorf

  • Slow Food, Slow anything [see Slow Web, for tech-connected example]

  • Privacy

  • Letterpress business cards for tech companies

  • Bespoke creation in an age of cheap reproduction

Minority movement or growing trend?


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This page contains a single entry by Simon St.Laurent published on June 27, 2012 3:15 PM.

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