It is hard to believe how much the world has changed in the last 30 years ago. Overall, for example, we estimate that the United States has captured only 18 percent of its potential from digital technologies, while Europe has captured only 12 percent Emerging economies are even further behind, with countries in the Middle East and Brazil capturing less than 10 percent of their digital potential.
As stated above, academic research has established that the Internet does not isolate people, nor does it reduce their sociability; it actually increases sociability, as shown by myself in my studies in Catalonia (Castells 2007), Rainie and Wellman in the United States (2012), Cardoso in Portugal (2010), and the World Internet Survey for the world at large (Center for the Digital Future 2012 et al.). Furthermore, a major study by Michael Willmott for the British Computer Society (Trajectory Partnership 2010) has shown a positive correlation, for individuals and for countries, between the frequency and intensity of the use of the Internet and the psychological indicators of personal happiness.
Perhaps the most telling place this kind of loop shows up is in the high-tech baby device market: Bluetooth diapers , internet-connected baby monitors , an anklet that keeps track of your infant’s every move, heartbeat, and temperature fluctuation In a country with an ever-eroding social safety net, parents are sold these surveillance devices under the guise of care and love, with a healthy dash of paranoia.
This digital transformation results from what economists who study scientific progress and technical change call a general-purpose technologyâ€”that is, one that has the power to continually transform itself, progressively branching out and boosting productivity across all sectors and industries.
Heidegger’s understanding of the importance of space changes somewhat in his works, but what matters for us is his insistence that our understanding of the spaces in which we live is neither inferior nor reducible to a neutral, technical, scientific understanding of space.