The Roots of Progress

Tickets available for Session 10 of The Story of Industrial Civilization: Safety

Tickets are now available for session 10 of my salon series with Interintellect, “The Story of Industrial Civilization”. Sunday, February 20, 10am Pacific.

Topic: Safety

The pre-industrial world was a dangerous place. Great fires raged and burned entire cities to the ground, ships were often lost at sea, storms could wash out roads and bridges, and flood farms and towns. There was little to no warning of, or protection from, natural disasters such as earthquakes, hurricanes, or volcanoes. Plague and famine were common. In many ways, technology has made us safer, at least on a day-to-day basis, as evidenced by the great improvement in mortality rates and life expectancy. But technology also creates its own risks, such as industrial accidents, car and plane crashes, and the health risks of chemicals and radiation. And new technologies, such as genetic engineering or AI, may create even greater risks—perhaps even “existential risks” to our species. How has safety been achieved in the past? How does technology create risk as well as safety? And how can we have both safety and progress?

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