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Offray Luna

Generative pluralism

1 min read

Thanks to a particularly fertile kind of generative pluralism that we know as network effects, soft technologies like language and money have historically caused the greatest broad increases in complexity and pluralism. When more people speak a language or accept a currency, the potential of that language or currency increases in a non-zero-sum way. Shared languages and currencies allow more people to harmoniously co-exist, despite conflicting values, by allowing disputes to be settled through words or trade4 rather than violence. We should therefore expect software eating the world to cause an explosion in the variety of possible lifestyles, and society as a whole becoming vastly more pluralistic.

And this is in fact what we are experiencing today.

The principle also resolves the apparent conflict between human agency and “what technology wants”: Far from limiting human agency, technological evolution in fact serves as the most complete expression of it.