June 7, 02021: Unsung Heroes of Technological Societies – The Maintainers
Zoom doors open @ 7:15PM — Come early and meet other Long Now thinkers.
Tickets are available on Eventbrite.
Presentation starts at 7:30PM
A Long Now Boston Community Conversation with Lee Vinsel and Andrew Russell, authors of The Innovation Delusion – How Our Obsession with the New has Disrupted the Work That Matters Most (2020), and founders of The Maintainers. A copy of the book will be offered as a door prize during the conversation!
The real heroes of the digital age, and all the technological revolutions that have come before, are not just the inventors and entrepreneurs that get all the glory. It’s the hard-working men and women that build and maintain the infrastructure and perform the nitty-gritty engineering, manufacturing and maintenance that allows it all to work. In fact, the mythology of high-tech innovation and the short-termism it promotes is hiding two unsettling truths. (1) Productivity growth has been slowing. (2) Infrastructure has been ignored and underfunded. Reforming the business practices and cultural attitudes that led us here is a critical priority in the efforts to build a thriving future for us all.
A maintenance mindset, and the long-term thinking it requires, is more important now than ever. Lee and Andy will explain why, and provide concrete examples of how the growing Maintainers movement is leading the way. From software to health care to education, Maintainers are keeping us safe, developing innovative and practical solutions to local and global problems and leading the way toward a more sustainable and equitable economy.
Among the questions the speakers will address:
What are the origins of the Innovation Delusion that is so prevalent in our high-tech economy?
How does the philosophy of maintenance demand long term thinking?
Why is a maintenance mindset critical to our future thriving?
What kind of long-term future do the Maintainers envision?
Join the conversation and be part of the solution.
The conversation will be held virtually using the Zoom platform. Login information and password will be provided to registrants prior to event.
$5 General Admission
Login begins at 7:15 p.m.; the conversation begins at 7:30 p.m.
Audience participation is encouraged.
About the speakers:
Lee Vinsel is a professor in the Department of Science, Technology and Society at Virginia Tech.
Andrew L. Russell is a professor of history and the dean of the College of Arts and Science at SUNY Polytechnic Institute.
Together they are the founders of the Maintainers research network and conferences, and authors of The Innovation Delusion. Their work and writing on the topic of maintenance have appeared in the New York Times, The Atlantic, The Washington Post and WIRED magazine.
We’re proud and excited to welcome Andy and Lee to the Long Now Boston community.