PROJECT M
 

Steam, combustion, search – the engines of their time

The notion of ‘work’ is changing severely as culture – and especially technology – brings along sweeping changes. “How has our understanding of work changed? How will we look at work in the future?”

Richard Donkin
© James Dawe

Steam, combustion, search – the engines of their time

The notion of ‘work’ is changing severely as culture – and especially technology – brings along sweeping changes. “How has our understanding of work changed? How will we look at work in the future?”

Richard Donkin

Pieces of work

The definition of work changed in the 19th and 20th centuries so that for many of us it has come to be something we’d rather not be doing. Work is again undergoing fundamental changes in the ‘age of the search engine,’ just as it did in the age of the steam engine and the age of the combustion engine. The ‘virtual’ economy has proved to be every bit as real as that feeding our needs. Work in time may seem less like work and more like living, requiring new models for earning, taxation and welfare, and possibly new models of government.

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