Invention: The Mother of Necessity by AnnMargaret

Thorstein Veblen, Norwegian-American sociologist, economist and leader of the Efficiency Movement (famous for his Theory of the Leisure Class) said, "Invention is the mother of necessity." Reversing the first and last words of the original maxim, Veblen proposes an interesting argument for the reproductive nature of the relationship between invention and necessity.

Today, a friend told me their i-pod made them feel like they NEEDED music on their daily commute. While music can be an enjoyable way to pass the time, it is not necessary in order for a person to do so. This pushed me to think about why so many people I see on the Boston T or the busy city sidewalk share a need to be so plugged in. It wasn't until I passed an advertisement on the street for cell phones that I realized inventions bare necessity through the birth canal of marketing.  When the media attempts to prove a need for a given product or invention, it simultaneously plays on the average individual's inclination to lean on group think, blind following, and impulsive consumerism for industrial capital gain. In today's world, often times it is the case that the sentiments that drive us to define what we feel are necessities are constructed. Try not to confuse NEED for WANT. Things that are necessary need not be defined and artificial intelligence desires to grow more artificially intelligent.

When Thomas Edison invented the light bulb, he bore the light that exposed a vision for an illuminated world. A world that would sooner rather than later be on the brink of going blind, due to eye-for-eye mentalities and its captivation with staring at and reproducing artificial light.

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