Led Astray By Still-Fallible Technology

“If all your friends all jumped off a bridge . . . would you, too??”

–Moms to their kids, circa 1970.

“Never ask a question that you don’t already know the answer to.”

–Advice to trial lawyers cross-examining witnesses.

Once upon a time, Mothers countered foolish, me-too behavior in their kids with that famous “bridge” question.

Today, the equivalent is doing what your GPS tells you to do, even when that appears manifestly wrong.

Which is how my wife ended up coming home from an unfamiliar part of downtown Minneapolis this morning via 35W instead of the correct 394, easily going five miles out of her way (to be fair, my sons and I memorably followed an errant GPS looking for a Phoenix-area hike way too long last winter).

Leap of Faith

The problem, of course, is that when you consult GPS directions today, it’s typically because you don’t know where you’re going.

But, it’s surprising how often people defer to technology even when that’s clearly a mistake.

Which begs the bigger question: ¬†where else is modern technology leading us astray — both literally and figuratively?

P.S.: On Wall Street, a recent technological innovation called “portfolio insurance” is commonly cited as the cause of the 1987 stock market crash.

About the author

Ross Kaplan has 19+ years experience selling real estate all over the Twin Cities. He is also a 12-time consecutive "Super Real Estate Agent," as determined by Mpls. - St. Paul Magazine and Twin Cities Business Magazine. Prior to becoming a Realtor, Ross was an attorney (corporate law), CPA, and entrepreneur. He holds an economics degree from Stanford.

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