Considering we started our summer class interrogating the shift 10,000 years ago from Paleolithic to Neolithic societies (aka the Agricultural Revolution), I thought you all might find this blog post from Grinding, entitled “The Transhuman Race” interesting, particularly in how it characterizes the human relationship with technology inherent in such a powerful social transition:
We have always been human/technology hybrids.
Throk has symbols and sounds. Those symbols become language. Language both changes how the brain works and jacks Throk and his descendants into the very first augmented reality. Throck pointing at a symbol on the wall and evoking a wolf shares the same technological space as my pointing at a wolf made of prims in Second Life as a kid pointing at the wolf on an AR display in Tokyo. Throk has the killer app and from now on everyone will have proto-Augmented Reality and someday it will be so ingrained and natural that we will be unable to uninstall it.
Throk begat a species of Transhumans who will always have self-upgrading versions of Language installed. Even if for some freak reason the app doesn’t get installed, the wetware will still be optimized to use it.
Language and tools gave us discernible culture – a whole series of interlocking technologies that are designed to propagate and spread and protect the clients who have it installed. Culture becomes agriculture and suddenly everything changes all over again. The technologies of agriculture make humans change their lives around them.
Go read the whole piece if you want to bake your noodle a bit.