These days, algorithms decide what we see. They find out what we like and keep giving us more of it, making us ignorant about everything else.
So society polarizes.
There’s no doubt the effects are harmful: check political discourse in America, for example. It’s pathetic. Even among smart people. And it’s getting worse every day. We can do better.
Technology is supposed to advance society, right?
Hence 100 Million Books, a browser extension that shows you a new idea from a new book every time you open a new tab. There are no categories and no social features and no algorithms whatsoever. From fiction to nonfiction, old to new, science to literature, etc…it presents you the world.
How can this help?
It might help open minds by promoting a diverse array of ideas. It might help people realize the sheer breadth of smart ideas, emotional stories, and insightful perspectives out there they don’t know. It might help them acknowledge that there are millions more they won’t ever know. These people may end up getting inspired by an idea that no friend (or robot) would ever tell them about. Perhaps at some point in this process, humanity may find some more humility.
Then, maybe, just maybe, we can start cooperating…and someday become less polarized.