The Atlantic

Lessons From Isaac Asimov's Multivac

It isn’t too late to stop technologies from further destabilizing fragile democratic institutions.
Source: Noah Berger / Reuters / Zak Bickel / The Atlantic

In his 1955 short story Franchise, Isaac Asimov imagined how American democracy might be radically transformed by the digital age. In the story, set in 2008, Americans’ political will is exercised not by individual citizens who stand in line to vote, but by a massive supercomputer—the Multivac—that processes an ocean of public data with

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