The decade's most triggering comedy
Famed Hollywood director Christopher Nolan explained why he chooses not to use a cell phone or email.
“My kids would probably say I’m a complete Luddite,” Nolan said, insinuating that his kids accused him of being anti-technology. But the 52-year-old filmmaker insisted he has a good reason for being picky about which tech to use. The “Inception” director also uses a computer without internet access while writing all his scripts.
Nolan said he believes that “technology and what it can provide is amazing,” but chooses to be careful about engaging with it.
“My personal choice is about how involved I get,” he explained. “It’s about the level of distraction. If I’m generating my material and writing my own scripts, being on a smartphone all day wouldn’t be very useful for me.”
“I’m easily distractible so I don’t really want to have access to the internet every time when I’m bored,” Nolan continued. “I do a lot of my best thinking in those kind of in-between moments that people now fill with online activity, so it benefits me.”
He also explained why he’d rather not email people, saying he’s “never been particularly interested in communicating with people in that way. I just call people from a landline.”
“I mean, everybody finds their own way to communicate with people and deal with things,” Nolan said.
Cell phones and email aren’t the only technologies Nolan is cautious about. He also compared advances in artificial intelligence (AI) to the events leading up to the end of World War II, which is the subject of “Oppenheimer.”
“The rise of companies in the last 15 years bandying words like algorithm — not knowing what they mean in any kind of meaningful, mathematical sense — these guys don’t know what an algorithm is,” Nolan said during a panel discussion following an early screening of the movie. “People in my business talking about it, they just don’t want to take responsibility for whatever that algorithm does.”
“Applied to AI, that’s a terrifying possibility. Terrifying,” the director continued. “Not least because, AI systems will go into defensive infrastructure ultimately. They’ll be in charge of nuclear weapons. To say that that is a separate entity from the person wielding, programming, putting that AI to use, then we’re doomed. It has to be about accountability. We have to hold people accountable for what they do with the tools that they have.”