Rate this book

Infinite Progress: How The Internet And Technology Will End Ignorance, Disease, Poverty, Hunger, And War (2013)

by Byron Reese(Favorite Author)
3.34 of 5 Votes: 2
1608324044 (ISBN13: 9781608324040)
Greenleaf Book Group Press
review 1: This book is basically one long love story to the internet.As the title suggests, Byron Reese writes how he believes that the internet and technology is leading us towards the end of ignorance, disease, poverty, and hunger: the official worry list in the pocket of every person in the 21st century, and way back before. Reese makes out pessimism as dangerous to society. He explains how there is reason to be optimistic about a bright future.This book can be read linearly, but its chapters can also be read in random order, as long as you read the first chapter to begin with. The first chapter opens the book describing an optimist’s reasoning, and sets up predictions and arguments for technology that will be referred to in later chapters. The first chapter will also give yo... moreu a good idea of the mindset you’re getting into. If you can survive the sheer force of optimism that gushes into your brain in the first chapter, then you will survive the rest of the book.Reese revisits this idea of a Digital Echo: that tracks, transcribes, and analyzes your every move. A GPS tracking your location- did you just exit that movie theater? Recording everything you say- want to replay your conversation? Sensors tracking your physiological responses- did you smile? Did your eyes dilate? This idea includes technology to record who you’ve met, what you’ve eaten, where you’ve been, and the list goes on. The idea is to have this information recorded and stored to extract data from, whether it’s recorded anonymously for researchers or to aid the public, or personally by the user. (Anonymously would be for the purpose of a statistic: “how many people have left this movie”, or to compare data from one person’s Echo to the next, if you are researching an issue and are making correlations from the entire log of someone’s life- what they’ve eaten or where they’ve been- that can be traced back to the cause of the issue.)In the chapter “The End of Ignorance,” Reese says “I am convinced we will permit data about our every movement, action, and word to be passively stored, and we will anonymously share that data for the betterment of society.” This is an interesting concept, but when Reese also says “At some point while reading this book, some part of the future I describe may have been unsettling to you,” at the end of the book, and of course I think of this Echo idea.Reading the ideas of technological advancement in the future is interesting, if they don’t seem too far-fetched. (Such as a spoon that alerts you to a substance in your food that you are sensitive to- and also is connected to your Echo.) But then, if you were in the 15th century, wouldn’t people accuse you of being a witch for having small-talk with Seri? There are so many advancements humankind has made that would be unimaginable even to the people of only a couple years ago.Following the famous quote by Isaac Newton “If I have seen farther than others, it is because I have stood on the shoulders of giants,” I’m going to say that standing on the shoulder of giants is what knowledge and progress is all about. Knowledge builds on itself, and continues to push discoveries forward. Just imagine placing the great minds of the past into the modern day of technological advancement. Way back when some great scientists and doctors had only barbaric conventional ways and minimal information to go from- the shoulders they were given to stand on were short. Just imagine if you were to bring them here, and give them the internet. Reese writes in his book, to dig in the significance of the internet: “Imagine if Hippocrates had a fraction of this. If Jenner had had email, if Pasteur an electron microscope, Salk a genetic sequencer.” With our technology, scientists are enabled to communicate and share information around the world more easily.This book is easy to follow, exciting to read, and the narrative is appropriately humorous.If you want to get excited about the future of humankind, and want realistic reasons to back your optimism, you should own this book.
review 2: This book captured my interest from the very first page and held it to the last. I admit I was always seeing the bleaker future...after all, with all the postapocalyptic books and grey predictions, it's hard to keep up hope for the better future. However, this book gave me that hope. The author used many logical possible steps to show, how will life grow better, not worse. I see a few snags...and many opportunities for human destruction...but if we manage to survive, this is the possible future I hope we arrive at. The author himself is optimistic. Not blind and certainly not ignorant of today's problems. Just...optimistic.Well written, valid thoughts, humor in all the right places, and an important point - the world of tomorrow is probably going to be a good one. less
Reviews (see all)
This book was so optimistic that reading it was like eating an entire chocolate cake in one sitting.
Too boring to finish. Largely superficial book filled with banalities and ridiculous hype.
tools are tools-who and how they use them is what matters
Write review
Review will shown on site after approval.
(Review will shown on site after approval)