Counterpoints to the manifesto

0. What is your definition of an engineer? I attended the Oliver/Vasiliev lecture yesterday, and what I saw wasn’t the work of what I would consider engineers, it was the work of artists whose media is code.

1. What happens of the need to study and expose the inner workings of a technology proves to be more of a threat than letting it be? Aligning yourselves with the Anonymous/Assanges/Snowdens of the world will surely backfire someday. Secrets are kept for a reason — very rarely is that reason to spite you or humanity.

2. What the heck is techno-political literacy?

3. Ah. Now I see what an engineer is: the foil of the designer. We work to make the confluence of technology and humanity seamless — you work to make humanity paranoid of all that is new.

4. You’re being too optimistic. A person’s ability to foresee the future is dependent on their own desires and experience. Pure logic-based decision making that results in an objective universal truth just isn’t going to happen when people are involved. Two people that design the same technology will see envision different (perhaps even contradicting) influences and effects, and adjust accordingly.

5. Okay. I kind of buy that.

6. Alright.

7. The Critical Engineer is obviously an artist. That’s what artists do.

8. Strategies, ideas, and agendas should be explored, analyzed, and possibly used to inform the future. They should not be adopted, re-purposed, or deployed without due diligence.

9. The writer/architect/chemist notes that written word/structure/physics expands into social and psychological realms, regulating behavior between people and the machines they interact with. By understanding this, the writer/architect/chemist seeks to reconstruct user-constraints and social action through means of literary/archeological/mathematical excavation.

10. If the Critical Engineer considers it most desirable to destroy/exploit the work of others to achieve exposure, I don’t think the Critical Engineer and I are going to be friends.


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