Back in 2000, technologist Bill Joy, one of the co-founders of Sun Microsystems, penned a feature for Wired magazine that caused a storm. Although Joy could boast a CV packed with technology breakthroughs, "Why the future doesn't need us" saw him cast as a neo-Luddite.
In it, he postulated that far from ushering in an age of comfort and leisure, new and advanced technology posed a potential threat to humanity. He cited nanotechnology with "uncontrolled replicators", genetic engineering, and robotics, to name just three, that separately or collectively posed a mortal threat to humanity if mis-used or mis-applied.
If Joy were writing the same article today, he would no doubt add cloud computing to the list of threats: networks of servers controlled by a small group of companies - which will only get smaller with consolidation - that will increasingly communicate with each other so that organisations can run applications across disparate clouds.
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