Ethics & Technologies

The technological revolution has sparked other revolutions in the cultural, social, political and economic spheres, revolutions in the strongest sense of the word. Every day we are experiencing the multiple disruptions taking place in all areas of our living environment, in all of our ecosystems. These disruptions stem from new technologies, namely all of the spinoffs and innovations in IT, the digital sphere and the Internet. The best place to start is to take a look at the definition of the word “revolution”.

What is a revolution?

According to Wikipedia – a global, collaborative, open source tool built upon collective intelligence and shared knowledge – “a revolution is a sudden reversal of a political regime by force.” It is also defined by the Larousse dictionary as an « abrupt and violent change in the political and social structure of a state, which occurs when a group revolts against the authorities, takes power and manages to keep it. »

The human being coevolves along with technologies.

For example, biohacker Jowan Österlund founded biometric biotech implant company Biohax International in Sweden in 2013. With over 15 years of experience in sterile procedures for piercing and body modification, he is currently one of the world’s premier installers of secure and safe biochips. He aims to develop the biohacking sphere in order to bridge the gap between IoT and IoU ™ (the Internet of Us ™). Biometric implants enable a sustainable, efficient, seamless, socially responsible lifestyle in today’s hyperconnected world.

Humans are taking back power through the strength of technology, through what it gives us in terms of new opportunities and capacities for action.

For example– Blockchain, Smart Contracts and Cryptocurrency

The Web business model is broken!” announced and demonstrated Ripple CTO Stefan Thomas at the WeAreDevelopers – People Code future conference. He showed the latest advances in the Interledger open source protocol, which brings us the ability to organize all digital trade worldwide using a real-time micropayment system, based on the principle of smart contracts, which are intermediary-free, secure and transparent.

What will we do with this power?

Humans are experimenting with this new capacity for action and initiative in many ways, based on their context, in particular their cultural context. The media is full of dystopian visions and micro-discours. According to Elon Musk, the purpose of humankind is to colonize. Ray Kurzweil leads the transhumanism movement. In Europe, we debate – or even get bogged down in – values and ethics without ever really going back to what these concepts truly mean.

French philosopher Paul Ricoeur distinguishes 3 dimensions of ethics:

1) The Aristotelian heritage of ethics, through its “purpose” or “teleology” (the quest for meaning?). Paul Ricoeur defined the ethical aim, the purpose (meaning) using the three following terms: “the aim of a good life, with and for others, in fair institutions. The three components of the definition are also important.”

A good life requires self-esteem, which is built in our capacity to act with intention and our ability to influence the way things go, the capacity for initiative. Self-esteem goes along with the hierarchization of our actions.

The purpose of a good life is teleological ethics, the prospective dimension, which takes pre-eminence over deontology or morals, which helps to create a hierarchy for everyone’s actions and intentional initiatives, in the construction of our self-esteem, with and for others, in fair institutions.

This is the definition of the ethical purpose of innovation and entrepreneurship, whatever ecosystem the individual is taking action in with intention and capacity for initiative.

2) Nonetheless, the ethical aim needs to be examined with the fine-toothed comb of norms, according to the Kantian heritage of deontological ethics that norms hold us to (in the sense of “duty”).

The human being is responsible, they live in the world through technology. They must do this with an ethical purpose. They have the power to combine moral duty and reason for being through their actions.

When ethics and norms are in conflict, the human’s only way out is through practical wisdom.

3) The dimension of practical wisdom is that of a philosophy of legitimate action that takes into account the question of context, of the specific situation. It comes into play when the norm is in conflict with the ethical purpose. Here, the dimension of fair institutions takes on its full meaning.

Through the power of technology, each of us individually has the empowerment and capacity for initiative in order to carry out the revolutions we need to by using our practical wisdom.

Michel Puech offers new substance and new resolutions so that homo technologicus is inspired by wisdom, becoming, in other words, a Homo Sapiens Technologicus.

This article is inspired by many readings that only made sense (substance) after reading Homo Sapiens Technologicus, by Michel Puech, whom I would like to think for this enlightenment and empowerment.


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