Today more often than in any other epoch we can hear exclamations like “Science is evil!”, “We should return to nature!”, “We are too dependent on machines and computers in particular!” Yet, however, these statements are by no means new. Luddites of various kinds existed in all times, and I can clearly imagine a picture of a hairy, club-swinging caveman orator persuading his awe-stricken fellow tribesmen that they all have grown too dependent on fire and are forgetting the natural way of eating their meat raw.
This image may look grotesque, but I wouldn’t be surprised if something like this happened in reality. Every old and long ago used-to thing has been new one day, and provoked disapproval of conservative elements of society; however, over time it became old, everyone forgot that it was a new-fangled contraption and went on to claiming the next new thing evil. Even the most radical followers of the “return-to-Nature” slogan don’t suggest that we should stop using fire, wheel, metal or, in fact, language, for it is the one most unnatural thing about man, the one that makes him unnaturally unlike animals.
The same goes for computers. They make our lives tremendously easier, more interesting and fulfilling, give us opportunities undreamed-of a mere twenty or thirty years ago; yet all the same, there are always people saying that progress is evil, that computers are the instrument of the devil, that we all grow too dependent on them and so on. Ironically, however, but the majority of such information can be easily found in blogs, e-mails, Facebook accounts and social networks. Doesn’t it say it all?