The Computer and the Economy

As members of a global economy, we have to ask ourselves “Do we want to understand how it works?”

The answer seems to be “Not really!” Or perhaps, more realistically “We don’t want to think about it!” Or even “It’s best to leave it alone, and let it run by itself!”

This answer is not surprising – considering our Protestant Christian heritage – that encourages us to think in terms of systems that run by themselves – Newton’s idea. With God in the background, making sure everything works properly. Questioning the rightness of things would be questioning the righteousness of God. It’s just not done.

What I have just said, in the last paragraph, is nothing new – people have been saying it for a hundred years, or so. But the objection to it is simple – the Global Economy doesn’t work very well, and is subject to periodic crashes – panics, or depressions – and global power struggles between countries. It has to be fixed. We made it (without thinking about what we were doing) and now we have to fix it.

When I say this, I know no one is listening. I am preaching to the choir – but there is no choir.

Or perhaps there is. There is growing support for Computer analysis and modeling of the Economy. Including FinTech – new technologies for Finance and Banking. This includes robust regulation of these efforts. The government of a country has to be involved in its finances – or its finances will continue to be defective.

There are also important new capabilities in Software – Artificial Intelligence (AI) and Big Data – the ability to understand and manage vast quantities of Information.

I am learning the Python programming language – and its many associated tools and techniques. My old mind still likes to learn.

And I am doing my part in trying to understand the world.


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