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New Dark Age: Technology and the End of the Future

James Bridle



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01 September 2018
Politics & government; Technology: general issues
How the Information Age destroys knowledge.

As the world around us increases in technological complexity, our understanding of it diminishes. Underlying this trend is a single idea: the belief that our existence is understandable through computation, and more data is enough to help us build a better world.

In reality, we are lost in a sea of information, increasingly divided by fundamentalism, simplistic narratives, conspiracy theories, and post-factual politics. Meanwhile, those in power use our lack of understanding to further their own interests. Despite the apparent accessibility of information, we’re living in a new Dark Age.

From rogue financial systems to shopping algorithms, from artificial intelligence to state secrecy, we no longer understand how our world is governed or presented to us. The media is filled with unverifiable speculation, much of it generated by anonymous software, while companies dominate their employees through surveillance and the threat of automation.

In his brilliant new work, leading artist and writer James Bridle surveys the history of art, technology, and information systems, and reveals the dark clouds that gather over our dreams of the digital sublime.
By:   James Bridle
Imprint:   Verso
Country of Publication:   United Kingdom
Dimensions:   Height: 210mm,  Width: 140mm, 
ISBN:   9781786635471
ISBN 10:   178663547X
Pages:   304
Publication Date:   01 September 2018
Audience:   General/trade ,  ELT Advanced
Format:   Hardback
Publisher's Status:   Active

James Bridle is a literary editor, technologist, writer, journalist, and visual artist. He writes for Guardian, Observer, Wired, Frieze, Atlantic, and many other publications.

Reviews for New Dark Age: Technology and the End of the Future

The young British artist is spearheading a conceptual-art movement- the New Aesthetic -through Tumblr, Twitter, and Instagram, as he tries to capture technology's strange effects on society. Vanity Fair A masterful study of all the things approaching out of the future's night. Compelling and essential. - Warren Ellis, author of Normal and Transmetropolitan James Bridle, one of our surest guides, here offers us a widely informed, deeply felt, and occasionally terrifying course on living in and with the enveloping darkness of our time. It's a must-read for anyone who's ever wondered how we might come to terms with technological complexity, and emerge with our humanity intact. - Adam Greenfield, author of Radical Technologies Computation brings humanity more darkness than enlightenment: a goblin horde of digital superstitions, invented and unleashed in just half a century. Yet James Bridle is fearless in our gloomy post-truth predicament; he's a theorist, artist, technical visionary and even a moralist. Has he foreseen the worst? Bruce Sterling, author of Pirate Utopia Technology is not the answer. Nor is it a solution. James Bridle's lucid and fearless writing instead insists on technology as an open question and urgent problem-which nevertheless needs to be confronted in order to think the present and free the future from false algorithmic certainties. - Hito Steyerl, author of Duty Free Art One image that I cannot get out of my head reading James Bridle extraordinary new book is that even as we can access vast tech capabilities we may actually know less and less. - Saskia Sassen, author of Expulsions An Orwell of the computer age. - Kirkus Review

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