The problem with tech people who want to solve problems

On the latest Recode Decode, MIT Media Lab director Joi Ito says we need to resist the urge to oversimplify the problems we’re

The problem with tech people who want to solve problems

Curated via Twitter from Recode’s twitter account….

And so I think it’s going to change kind of bottom-up and I think it’s going to change from things like the Parkland kids who wake up and tell people what they think. It is interesting.

It’s interesting, because everybody’s like, “Oh, you’re being pro tech. ” I’m like, “No, I’m saying we’ve got to be informed or else we’re screwed even worse than we are now with no laws,” that kind of thing.

And when engineers try to solve a problem, says MIT’s Joi Ito, they often veer over that line. “Tech people tend to want to just solve the problem,” Ito said on the latest episode of Recode Decode with Kara Swisher. “But the problem with the problem is it’s not like previous problems, where you just solve it.

I think it’s also personality because Nicholas came from MIT so he sort of made the identity of the Media Lab “not MIT. ” Whereas I came from the outside and I saw all these really wonderful people and resources inside of MIT, so I’ve been sort of pushing the Media Lab back closer to MIT, I think.

The problem with tech people who want to solve problems On the latest Recode Decode, MIT Media Lab director Joi Ito says we need to resist the urge to oversimplify the problems we’re solving.

And what’s interesting to me is there’s a lot of people like you, like me, Roger McNamee, who are in, who are like, “Wait a minute. ” They know the inside and are saying, “You guys have to stop, because you don’t understand what you’re doing. ” And to the outsider saying, we look like attackers when we’re not attackers.

And the game that I’m playing and the thing that I’m solving for is something really different than what you want me to solve for. ” And I think it’s going to be a kind of values rebellion.

So today we can still push for diversity by having the HR person lean towards minorities, but the problem is, if your data says we want to hire white people, it’s illegal to put your thumb on the scale.

And because it’s so interdisciplinary, we use the term antidisciplinary, the building of the thing is the way you sort of explain what it is you’re doing because it’s hard to explain it when you have three different disciplines trying to work together.

A lot of people, it’s interesting, we’re having a panel at Code this year called “Inside Out,” the people who have left, all of a sudden are becoming quite critical in a way because now they’re like, “Wait a minute.

And they have to be proactively forward versus looking backwards, because it’s hard to not understand where you need to go if don’t understand where you’re going. That’s right.

You may know me as the author of an existential play narrated by the 20th letter of the alphabet, it’s called “Am I T? ” But in my spare time I talk tech, and you’re listening to Recode Decode from the Vox Media Podcast Network.

Even the founders of Six Apart had been laid off and they said, “Well, we’re going to do our own thing. ” Right after the bubble, so it’s like early 2000s, I had raised a fund and I started investing in Silicon Valley.

I think if you go the history of the Media Lab, it’s always been somewhere around the interface between humans and machines, and then it was a lot of the early social media and internet stuff came from the Media Lab.

I think one of them is really that it was created in an explosion of techno-utopianism, and the students and a lot of the faculty, not all of them, have wanted the Media Lab to become more reflective and to think about what did social consequences and bringing social sciences in, things like that. So that’s one. I’ve grown in … so a lot of it was just blocking and tackling some of the issues around accounting and dealing with members.

And I think that’s what’s very different from a traditional academic department, where you’re sort of extending but mostly going into areas that are either adjacent to or connected somehow to the thing that you’re doing.

Give us a little overview of what’s going on at the Media Lab because media has always been … you know, I’m trying to go and I went there, again, 20 years ago, the stuff they were talking about has now been commercialized.

And also, bring things like social sciences and history and other things that didn’t feel applied enough to the Media Lab into the Media Lab, because I think that’s really, really important.

Automated decision making, the problem is the judge gets this risk score, and some of the risk scores … like, the difference between like a five or six might be a few percentage points, but that’s, but they say, “Oh. It’s a six.

It was this idea that with the internet, you had the ability to share content and build on the work of others, but because of a lot of the copyright restrictions that big media companies in Hollywood were putting on, even though people wanted to share, the technology was preventing it.

And it’s a very tight link between businesses, and making things that can be made, essentially, that can be used and deployed. That’s right.

The really interesting stuff that I think we’re going to do is stuff that we haven’t really thought of yet. So, it’s …

And I was on a bus and she said, “Hey, would you want to be director of the Media Lab? ” I said, “Yes,” but then they looked at my resume which says that I didn’t even get an undergraduate degree and they said, “Well, this probably isn’t going to work. ” So they went through a whole process for months, and I guess they went through lots of candidates, but they didn’t find one that worked.

But it’s really similar to the early days of the internet, where we had this government system that became commercialized and we had good things and bad things.

And, I think, again, it’s probably more effective than the average person thinks, but I don’t think it’s nearly as effective as some people sell it.

And it’s interesting, when you look at the companies, the senior people are more oblivious of this than the younger people or the people who are more in the system.

Although some in the tech world may believe we’re living in a simulation, Ito told Swisher, that’s only because they’re looking at the world as an equation to be optimized and not the messy place that it is. “A lot of decisions that we make about how we feel about civil rights or gay marriage, whatever it is, those aren’t decisions that are optimizations,” he said. “Those are these cultural transformations that occur in society.

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