Tuesday, 18 March 2014

Systems Failure OR If, Epitome of Vulnerability

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/R._N._Taber

Information technology is a wonderful thing although I suspect it is leaving me behind, but at least I can read, write, wrestle fairly successfully with numbers and don’t need a computer to write a poem in my head…

Oh, and yes, I can go into common sense mode with ease as well. [Whatever happened to that plain, old-fashioned common sense upon which world societies once turned?]

Nowadays, I suspect we get our priorities if not wrong, exactly, then muddled to say the least. Technology must take its share of the blame. More of us are relying on it to the extent that we are getting lazy about thinking for ourselves. Worse, some people actually prefer social networks to meeting up and chatting face to face with people and friends.  (Is it any wonder social and interpersonal skills are going much the same way as common sense?)

No, I am not knocking new technology, but we should remain alert to the truism, ‘garbage in, garbage out’. Information technology, for all its wonders, remains vulnerable to human input.

SYSTEMS FAILURE or IF, EPITOME OF VULNERABILITY

If

Life is a matter of sensibility,
love a question
of values, democracy a state
of mind, God as and when we will,
will we...?

If

A body should grow numb,
(even dumb)
behind twitching curtains
of acid rain, should we, dare we
trust automaton?

If

To rummage broom cupboards,
for inspiration,
amateur philosophers
are driven or be of a whim
to go

So…

We could ask a computer
what IT's all about,
but don’t forget garbage in,
and garbage out will be the end  
of us

Copyright R. N. Taber 2000; 2014

[Note: An earlier version of this poem appeared in The Language of Life, Poetry Today (Forward Press) 2000 and subsequently in Love And Human Remains by R. N. Taber, Assembly Books, 2001; 2nd (revised) e-edition in preparation.]


No comments :