Humans have had interesting relationships with machines for more than a century. We love our cars. We love our new TVs. Machines, in turn, have changed how we live and do business. Railroads opened the West. Automated switching on telephone networks opened up new forms of communication. Jet aircraft made us a global society. Computers changed everything.
In the 19th and 20th centuries such changes occurred over the course of decades. Today, machine-driven changes seem to take place almost overnight. In an era of artificial intelligence, the Web, and smart phones machines don't just carry out our requests but actually shape our decisions, our thinking.
One of today's thought leaders in the human/machine relationship is Andrew McAfee, (@amcafee), a principal research scientist at MIT. McAfee and his associate at MIT Erik Brynjoffsson have co-authored three books on how we use machines and the impact that those machines have on our lives, our work, and our businesses. In 2016 they published The Second Machine Age: Work, Progress, and Prosperity in a Time of Brilliant Technologies.
Their latest work, Machine Platform Crowd: Harnessing Our Digital Future is due to be available in June. That work will form the basis for McAfee's keynote address at Interop ITX on Thursday, May 18, Machine, Platform, Crowd: Harnessing the Digital Revolution.