Review: Pax Technica in the FT
Phil Howard’s book, Pax Technica, was reviewed in the Financial Times.
The subject of this book — the emerging “internet of things” — could not be more timely and important; and its central premise — that this new stage in the evolution of the web has political implications that will match or even outstrip its commercial ones — is both striking and convincing.
Nearly 30 years ago, Harvard Business School professor Shoshana Zuboff identified what was unique about the then nascent introduction of computers to US business.
The original industrial revolution consisted of “automating”: building machines to do things more efficiently than people. The computer revolution, however, involved “informating” as well: not just improving industrial processes, but generating reams of digital data about them which, she believed, might ultimately be as valuable as the efficiency gains from automation itself.