The Way our Brains are Wired
Thank you for that well crafted article. I too found myself trying to grudgingly resist having some kind of admiration for the way the attack was constructed.
But it set me thinking along the lines of the human nature we share and our propensity towards optimism and rose-tinted glasses etc.
There is little doubt that the folks who did so much to develop our connected, computerised world, did so with a genuine sense of optimism and pride in offering assistance to fellow academics in order that they could share their research work more constructively, for the betterment of us all in the end.
But I do wonder if what we have subsequently built atop that also suffers from too much of the same optimism and faith in humanity. The initial landscape of the internet could therefore be seen as a very elegantly constructed garden for all to play in (and we all love to play!), but made without paying enough attention to that part of human nature that lies in the dark leafy shadows, easily hidden from our rose-tinted view.
We also suffer from that inclination to readily trust the incessant, keep going forward, marketing speak of both hardware and software vendors, as there is also a very competitive need within many of us to have the very latest shiny shiny in order to come out on top of rival businesses etc. Similarly, computers and processors are all too eager to run an instruction, the split second in which it is given and without any consideration of wider consequences.
So perhaps the shape (landscape), of our vision for the connected future should be to both construct and operate it in a manner that truly mitigates against our very own human outlook on the world. One where indeed multiple pairs of eyes and checks verify and compare inputs/outputs and where the actual digital, electronic switching, is done in such a way as to stop ourselves believing that computers also have a rose-tinted outlook on life! They do not they are awesome bits of technology, but, ultimately, they are just dumb servants it is we who instruct those servants, so lets work to get our very own instruction set sorted out first!
Personally I would much rather be the tortoise in the technological race towards the future, plodding along with care, due diligence and thorough inspection and alertness, than the hare, eagerly racing along no matter what the consequences are going to be.
Human nature, eh!