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It is economics, policy, law, and indeed, for some, religion that advanced information technology should be eventually accessible to the masses. To this end, the federal and state governments are establishing goals and guidelines for advanced information technology's equitable deployment. Chief among the governments' intended beneficiaries are our children, Generations X,Y, Z, and beyond. The explicit expectation, however, is that every individual and group in our society would benefit from such deployment.

Efficiencies in the computer augmented generation, embedded in the processing and storing of information are expected to enhance education, commerce, the economy, political discourse, individual self actualization, and the management of our homes. Proponents of this utopian technological utility abound. The only difficulty, many argue, is in achieving equitable access in a society in which progress is propelled by profit and hamstrung by the inequitable distribution of wealth.

An equally compelling issue is the unquestioned assumption that technology-as developed, deployed, and currently evolving-is beneficial to all. However, technologies are not neutral in their impact. Even when they are implemented with the most beneficent of intents, they almost always have inadvertent consequences. While many might dismiss this assessment as the lamentation of yet another Luddite, the anthropological and psychological relationship between our tools and us, and especially between us and our communications technologies, justify a more careful consideration.



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