[ExI] net wisdom

William Flynn Wallace foozler83 at gmail.com
Fri Jul 22 15:27:13 UTC 2016

Tara - Currently, aging people tend to become set in their ways, less able
and therefore less eager to learn new technologies. Certainly less inclined
to take risks. This has some advantages; an older population is less
crime-ridden, safer, etc. But it has an obvious cost to innovation.

Look at what has happened in a lot of new tech:  computer chips with a lot
of memory enable stuffing products with all sorts of uses most of us will
never use.  Smart phones:  200 page manual to tell you how to use all the
apps in it.  Cameras - ditto, but need a 1000 page manual.  Computers -
ditto - even more.  Separate manuals for seniors.  Separate phones and
other things for seniors.  Poor tech support for beginners.

You get a computer error message 4857298004.  You Google that and get tech
people talking to tech people about how to edit the registry etc.
Incomprehensible to the ordinary person.

All in all, new tech requires far more of our time to learn how to use the
things.  50s TV.  Plug it in, orient the antenna, done.  Phones - pick
receiver, dial, done.  Camera - adjust F stop, speed, focus, shoot.

I have been dealing with new tech since 1965.  I had to learn mainframe
computer programs with no help at all from the computer department.  Let's
not even talk about how to set the pins on 80s Japanese printers as
instructed by manuals written by people whose first language was not

So new tech has not exactly been featured by easy to learn gadgets.  Far
more money, I should think, has gone into research, marketing and sales,
than in just how people use the things.

I have had to learn all these things and frankly I am tired of it.  I want
Direct TV or whoever to just give me the channels I watch.  I want a camera
that has only the few settings I use without sacrificing quality or
resolution etc.  Ditto phone,  Ditto computer.

OH, I promised to give you an update on my ChromeBook:  does everything I
want it to - email, Amazon, Google, and a few news sites completes my list
of daily doings -  no streaming or online games etc..  Very long battery
life; easy to use; very light.  I have a big desktop when I want to do
other things, which is rare.  Very highly recommended for those who
requirements are few.  Extremely cheap.

In sum, it's far harder to be a senior in today's world.  It is no wonder
to me that many people just opt out of new tech.  Tech companies need to
hire people of different ages, different IQs, etc. to test their products.
I guarantee the products would hit the streets quite different.

More later on personality and intelligence changes in old age.

bill w

On Fri, Jul 22, 2016 at 2:48 AM, Dan TheBookMan <danust2012 at gmail.com>

> On Jul 22, 2016, at 12:37 AM, Anders Sandberg <anders at aleph.se> wrote:
> This is something I have been wondering about too. I am pretty confident
> that a fair chunk,  of the conservatism is just biological responses to
> having less energy and a lowered learning rate. But I don't know if this
> explains most of it. Robin argued that there would be inevitable
> conservatism and fragility due to pure learning effects in his book.
> There is also the social angle. When you are older you are more likely to
> have a position/wealth/status to lose. So that might make you less willing
> to take big risks or support social change.
> What about less chance of recovery or greater realization of the risk if
> you take a big chance and lose?
> Regards,
> Dan
>   Sample my latest Kindle book, "The Late Mr. Gurlitt," at:
> http://mybook.to/Gurlitt
> _______________________________________________
> extropy-chat mailing list
> extropy-chat at lists.extropy.org
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