The Crime of Reason

Robert B. Laughlin, Department of Physics at Stanford University gave this talk at the Xerox PARC Forum on October 23, 2008.

There is increasing concern about the disappearance of technical knowledge from the public domain, both on grounds that is presents a security danger and because it is economically valuable “Intellectual Property”. I argue that this development is not anomalous at all but a great historic trend tied to our transition to the information age. We are in the process of losing a human right that all of us thought we had but actually didn’t–the right to learn things we can and better ourselves economically from what we learn. Increasingly, figuring things our for yourself will become theft and terrorism. Increasingly, reason itself will become a crime.

  • Video of The Crime of Reason at PARC website
  • Download presentation slides in pdf format.
  • Originally spotted in the comments section of a great article on what makes the iPad an “anti-internet platform”.

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