Nicholas Tollervey's Reviews > Program or Be Programmed: Ten Commands for a Digital Age

Program or Be Programmed by Douglas Rushkoff
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Jan 12, 11

Read in November, 2010

An interesting and thought provoking read: an ideas book with aspects of an etiquette guide bolted on the side.

If you work in this space many of the ideas and arguments won't be new although it's great to have them all together in one svelte volume. As a programmer myself I certainly sympathise with the main thesis of the book (basically, what the title says). Nevertheless, an examination of how technological change changes/empowers/enslaves people is not a new endeavour and whilst this work is specifically to do with the Internet and our situation *right now*, it would have been interesting to have had a historical perspective - how did the philosophers and doers in the past react, cope with, control and make use of the technological changes of their time..?

Could be read in one afternoon although you'd probably want to take your time and think about things.
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Comments (showing 1-2 of 2) (2 new)

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Brian Mackey You said, "it would have been interesting to have had a historical perspective - how did the philosophers and doers in the past react, cope with, control and make use of the technological changes of their time..?"

For just that perspective, I'd recommend reading William Powers' book "Hamlet's Blackberry." The author looks at what a few famous people from history — Socrates, Seneca and Shakespeare among them — had to say about what was then sweeping technological change.


Nicholas Tollervey Thanks for the heads-up.


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