Hyperhistory, the emergence of the MASs, and the design of infraethics

In Mireille Hildebrandt & Bibi van den Berg (eds.), Information, Freedom and Property (2016)
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Abstract
The Copernican revolution displaced us from the center of the universe. The Darwinian revolution displaced us from the center of the biological kingdom. And the Freudian revolution displaced us from the center of our mental lives. Today, Computer Science and digital ICTs are causing a fourth revolution, radically changing once again our conception of who we are and our “exceptional centrality.” We are not at the center of the infosphere. We are not standalone entities, but rather interconnected informational agents, sharing with other biological agents and smart artifacts a global environment ultimately made of information. Having changed our views about ourselves and our world, are ICTs going to enable and empower us, or constrain us? This paper argues that the answer lies in an ecological and ethical approach to natural and artificial realities. It posits that we must put the “e” in an environmentalism that can deal successfully with the new issues caused by the fourth revolution.
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