In a speech to MIT graduates, Tim Cook defends the predominance of humanity over technology (and makes fun of Donald Trump)

About 12 years ago, Steve Jobs took the stage on the lawns of Stanford University to give the best known (and quoted) of his speeches outside of Apple's keynotes. His successor, Tim Cook, he does not enjoy the same superhuman communication skills in public, but, in any case, he is still a respectable speaker and with the advantage of having even stronger opinions on a range of non-technological issues.

Want an example? Just take a look at this beautiful speech delivered by the Apple CEO at the 2017 class graduation ceremony at MIT (Massachusetts Institute of Technology). Cook decided to focus his speech on the relationship of humanity with technology, undeniably a subject of fundamental importance in an era in which our dependence is increasingly critical to electronic devices and, as expected, did very well.

For the second time in a week I'm waiting for Tim Cook to take the stage! Today at # MIT2017 congratulations to the students!

Before any profound reflection on humanity, however, Cook did not miss the opportunity to send a hint to American President Donald Trump, a figure with whom the CEO has already been involved in some public clashes over fundamental disagreements.

I will never understand how MIT students managed to put that rover no Kresge Oval or putting a propeller hat on that big dome, or how you obviously hacked into the president's Twitter account. I know that it’s only students who are behind this because most of tweets they leave at 3 in the morning.

Obviously, part of the speech revolved around Jobs:

After countless twists and turns, finally, 20 years ago, my search ("what do I want to be when I grow up?") Took me Apple. At that time, the company was struggling to survive. Steve Jobs had just returned, and was launching the campaign "Think Different". He wanted to empower the mad, the misfits, the rebels and the troublemakers, the round pieces in the square holes to do the best job. If we could do just that, Steve knew that we could really change the world. Before that moment, I had never met a leader with such passion or a company with such a clear and attractive mission: to serve humanity.

The tone of the speech, then, changed to something a little more thoughtful and cautious, very consistent with the times of uncertainty that we live in today.

Technology is capable of doing amazing things, but it doesn't want us to do amazing things. She wants nothing. That part with us. () I am not concerned with the prospect of artificial intelligence giving computers the ability to think like humans. I am more concerned with seeing people thinking like computers, without values ​​or compassion, without thinking about the consequences. And we need you to protect ourselves from this because if science is a search in the dark, then the humanities are the candles that show us where we have been and the dangers ahead.

The full video of Cook's speech, in English, can be seen below his speech, specifically, starts at 7'10 ”.

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In addition to the speech, the executive still had time to give a brief interview to the MIT Technology Review, publication of the university itself. In a particularly interesting excerpt, Cook talks about the general idea that Apple is lagging behind in its development of artificial intelligence which, according to him, is a wrong impression caused by the fact that the company only advertises products and services when they are ready to reach the hands of consumers.

We are not going to talk about things we are going to do in 2019, 20, 21. Not because we don't know what it will be but because we don't want to talk about it.

Despite this and the fact that, as he puts it, AI is already helping Apple consumers with a number of practical aspects, like photo recognition, music recommendations on Apple Music and extending the iPhone's battery, Cook believes there are a limit: from the moment the human being is out of the equation, a barrier must be placed. As the executive says: "When technological advancement grows exponentially as it does today, I think there is a risk of forgetting the fact that technology must serve humanity, and not the other way around."

Nice words, Tim.

via Recode, 9to5Mac