Summary of Who Owns the Future?

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Who Owns the Future? book summary


8 Overall

8 Importance

9 Innovation

6 Style


Author Jaron Lanier touches on self-driving cars, financial algorithms, climate change, a fair economic system and dozens of other complex topics. The overarching theme that unites these disparate ideas is how information technology is transforming each of them, though people generally underestimate how fundamentally this transformation will disrupt the economy. Lanier helped pioneer virtual reality and has been involved in or been a close observer of many digital advances. His observations possess particular weight and vividness. Lanier points out how information technology has made society less fair and less humane. This is not an easy read, due to its idiosyncratic organization, its vast ambitions and Lanier’s iconoclastic approach. The author’s prescription for a new, more equitable, more functional economy is fascinating but sometimes hard to parse. Still, getAbstract recommends this manifesto as required reading for anyone intrigued by cyberculture, ethics or shaping the future – if you can read with patience.

In this summary, you will learn

  • How information technology is reshaping the economy and society;
  • What changes this will cause; and
  • How society can plan a new, more fair and more functional economy for the information age.

About the Author

A pioneer of the virtual world, computer scientist and musician Jaron Lanier also wrote You Are Not a Gadget.



Economic Paradox, Economic Transformation
From laptops to the computer chips in cars, information technology is everywhere. As the full picture of information technology’s impact unfolds, most people will find that they vastly underestimated the scale and scope of that transformation. ...

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