A series of BBC films about how humans have been colonised by the machines we have built. Although we don't realise it, the way we see everything in the world today is through the eyes of the computers. The series argues this has affected a wide spectrum of human institutions and studies, from American economic theory, to environmental policy, and governmental philosophy.
Filmmaker Adam Curtis has also directed:
The Century of Self (2002), The Power of Nightmares (2004), The Trap (2007), Bitter Lake (2015)
Chapter 1: Love and Power
The story of two perfect worlds. One is the small group of disciples around the novelist Ayn Rand in the 1950s who saw themselves as a prototype for a future society where everyone could follow their own selfish desires. The other is the global utopia that digital entrepreneurs in Silicon Valley set out to create in the 1990s.
Chapter 2: The Use and Abuse of Vegetational Concepts
The story of how our modern scientific idea of nature, the self-regulating ecosystem, is actually a machine fantasy. It has little to do with the real complexity of nature. It is based on cybernetic ideas that were projected on to nature in the 1950s by ambitious scientists. A static machine theory of order that sees humans, and everything else on the planet, as components - cogs - in a system.
Chapter3: The Monkey in the Machine and the Machine in the Monkey
This episode looks at why we humans find this machine vision so beguiling. The film argues it is because all political dreams of changing the world for the better seem to have failed - so we have retreated into machine-fantasies that say we have no control over our actions because they excuse our failure.
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