Future of Coding

55 • Man-Computer Symbiosis by J.C.R. Licklider


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Jimmy Miller joins the show as co-host. Together, we embark on a new series of episodes covering the most influential and interesting papers in the history of our field. Some of these papers led directly to where we are today, and their influence cannot be overstated. Others were overlooked or unloved in their day, and we revive them out of curiosity and wonder. A few even hint at an inspiring future we haven’t yet achieved, placing them squarely in line with our community’s goals. We give these papers all the respect and deep reflection they deserve and, perhaps, the occasional kick in the shins.

Today’s paper is titled Man-Computer Symbiosis, authored by J.C.R. “Licky” Licklider in 1960. The title sure is outdated — but how have the ideas aged in the eternity since it was published? Listen on to hear your two hosts figure that out, and delight at just how wildly right and wrong some of its predictions turned out to be.

Thank you to the following sponsors, all of whom are doing important work in our field, and all of whom want to hire you to do even more of it:

(I keep hearing about more and more people in our sphere landing jobs at these co’s — high-fives all around!)

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