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Jaron Lanier

October 10, 2013

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A pioneer in virtual reality, Jaron Lanier takes the stage for a conversation about the future of libraries and information. Lanier is the author of You Are Not A Gadget and most recently Who Owns The Future?.

In Who Owns the Future?, Lanier questions the effects network technologies have had on our economy and culture, arguing that the era of free information has come at a steep cost to our society. The rise of digital networks, he suggests, has led our economy into recession and decimated the middle class. To keep technology and a thirst for consumer data from dictating the direction of our future, we must entirely rethink how we obtain and exchange knowledge and information. As an institution fundamentally linked to the free exchange of knowledge and information, libraries play a unique role in Lanier's vision for a better future. In conversation with Paul Holdengräber, Lanier explores questions about the ever-expanding grasp of the Internet and future of libraries.

Jaron Lanier is a computer scientist, composer, artist, and author who writes on numerous topics, including high-technology business, the social impact of technology, the philosophy of consciousness and information, Internet politics, and the future of humanism. In 2010, Lanier was named one of the 100 most influential people in the world by Time Magazine. He has also been named one of top one hundred public intellectuals in the world by Prospect and Foreign Policy magazines, and one of history’s 300 or so greatest inventors in the Encyclopedia Britannica. In January 2010, Knopf published Lanier’s book You Are Not a Gadget, A Manifesto, which became a New York Times, Los Angeles Times, and Boston Globe bestseller. You Are Not a Gadget was chosen as one of the best books of the year by Time Magazine and The New York Times, among others.

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