I’d like to think that computers are neutral, a toolEllen Ullman
like any other, a hammer that can build a house or smash
a skull. But there is something in the system itself, in the
formal logic of programs and data, that recreates the world in its own image. Like the rock-and-roll culture, it forms an irresistible horizontal country that obliterates the long, slow, old cultures of place and custom, law and social life. We think we are creating the system for our own purposes. We believe we are making it in our own image. We call the microprocessor the “brain”; we say the machine has “memory.” But the computer is not really like us. It is a projection of a very slim part of ourselves: that portion devoted to logic, order, rule, and clarity. It is as if we took the game of chess and declared it the highest order of human existence.
Ullman, E. Close to the Machine – Technophilia and Its Discontents. City Light Books (2001)