Douglas Rushkoff: Renaissance Prospects

In a talk he gave at Pop Tech back in 2004 (entitled Renaissance Prospects,) Douglas Rushkoff spoke about our culture being on the verge of a new Renaissance.

Much like the old renaissance, this new one would be the result of the convergence of scientific discoveries and technological advances which cause a dramatic shift in how we see and interact with the world. 
Just as the Old Renaissance Gave Us
The New Renaissance Gives Us
The Printing Press
The Internet
Perspective Painting
The Spencerian Sonnet (extended metaphor)
The Novel
Virtual Reality (Gaming)
  • The printing press allowed one person to communicate with the masses easily, the internet allows the masses to communicate.
  • Perspective painting allowed liberated the image from its two dimensional medium. Fractals liberate geometry from abstract Euclidian forms so we can better model the natural world.
  • The Spencerian Sonnet allowed presented us with the extended metaphor where two unrelated things are linked by comparison, hyperlinks allow us to relate anything to anything else.
  • The novel allowed us to have a fully immersive experience as an observer, gaming and virtual reality allow us to have a fully immersive experience as participants.
The liberation and empowerment that came as a result of the first Renaisance, brought literacy and increased capacity for communication and understanding leading to advances in all areas of life, including religion. The Protestant Reformation rode in on the crest of the wave of the Renaissance.

If we are in fact, on the verge of a new Renaissance, why can't we have a new Reformation too? That's what I'm hoping for. A cultural shift that revitalizes the Church and empowers individual believers.

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