Navigating Technology at the Limits of Comprehension
From the power grid to the stock market to the latest iOS, complex systems are plagued by unintended glitches, unpredictable behavior, and unexplainable system failures. Why can’t we make things simpler? Is technological complexity inevitable? And how are we supposed to deal with technology that nobody can understand anymore?
Complexity scientist Samuel Arbesman explores the forces that lead us to continue to make systems more complicated and more incomprehensible, despite our desperate desire for them to be more coherent. He offers a new framework for dealing with complex systems, taking the audience on a journey of increasing technological complexity and the new types of thinking we will need in this Age of Incomprehensibility.
This keynote lecture provides participants with an overview of the different forces that lead all of our technologies towards ever more complexity, as well as a practical orientation for thinking about and handling these systems. This framework can be applied to any large system, from computer systems to regulatory codes. A Q&A is provided at the end of the keynote.
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