Kristy Claassen

Kristy Claassen

Alumna of the MSc Philosophy of Science, Technology and Society at the University of Twente | Ph.D. Researcher in Philosophy of Technology.

Location Enschede, The Netherlands


  • Thanks for all the thought-provoking comments Helen!

  • Hi Jaap, I agree with your comment that there are a lot of different applications of AI. The distinction between Narrow and General AI is useful here. Narrow AI refers to specific devices using an application of AI designed for a narrowly defined situation. General AI is the kind of thing that we hear more about in the media and Psy-fi, the idea of an AI that...

  • This is a very important point you are making, Marian. The European GDPR also mentions the "right to explanation". Definitely a conversation that will get more interesting as AI develops further.

  • Why The Jetsons?

  • @deet I think it could be understood as a tool, although some might disagree.

  • @KerryQuinn Absolutely. Especially since technologies are designed in contexts so different to the ones they will be deployed in eventually.

  • @HansIJsselstein In that sense I completely agree

  • This became very clear to me once when I was watching something on TV and it triggered my VA. It is easy to forget that it is always on and listening to commands.

  • I missed that one, thanks for the share.

  • Hi Marian.

    I agree that the idea that technologies are not part of the world can be confusing, but I think the important part here is the notion that "Technologies are... part of our relations with the world". In other words, technologies are not something completely separate from us "out there" but something that shapes the way in which we engage, act and...

  • That took me some time as well... I just think of it as ID. This lecture helps with that:

  • Not sure, but an interesting question. Are humans unique in the way that they use technologies?

  • Nice example, I think because it is something so ingrained in our lives people easily forget that it is actually a technology.

  • Hi Nina,
    Unfortunately, most of Jasper's work is quite daunting to read and it depends on what aspect you are interested in. If you are looking for something very introductory on his general views of philosophy then "Philosophy for Everyman" or "Way to wisdom" are good reads. However, "Man in the Modern Age" would be the best if you are interested in his...

  • Keep in mind that there are many ways to connect the program admin ( if you want to find out more.

  • There are no fully online options for the course at the moment, but there are a lot of resources that you can look at here (

    If you are interested I would also highly recommend the "Student for a Day" option, it is what finally persuaded me to...

  • Thank you Ali!

  • "Farming" is an interesting one, never thought of it in that way.

  • But hopefully not all :)

  • @HelenR For me, the challenge when moving to other browsers (I used DuckDuckGo for a while) is that you lose some of the personal recommendations. With Chrome my location & search history impacted my searches, and with other browsers that don't save your info you don't get as accurate results. So it's not just other people's perceptions, but also the question...

  • Are there competencies that focus specifically on the ethical design elements? Or is it more general? My Lean/Agile knowledge is very limited so I am not sure if there are specific aspects where this is discussed.

  • This is an aspect of the field I am very interested in. There is a misconception that most African communities don't value privacy enough, but I think it is rather a different kind of group orientated privacy that is at play instead of more individualistic notions. Very nice share!

  • In South Africa, some retailers have removed sweets from the checkout queues to help the "children" make healthier choices. I'm way more susceptible to that kind of nudging than any child :D

  • I agree that nudging can be used to entrench discriminatory behaviours, which is problematic and should be addressed. For me, the key here is the possibility of ignoring the influence (the libertarian aspect of paternalism). Doesn't a nudge that is demeaning and de-humanising mean that there was no (uncoerced) choice?

  • @RodrigoRoqueDeCastro The stubbornness is appreciated as a socio-technical approach is also necessary, although it is not the main focus here.

    What do you think about Don Ihde's idea of "Multistability" in terms of Fernando Broncano's philosophy? I don't know Broncano's work and it seems there might be some overlap?

  • Hi Jasper, could you elaborate a bit? I'm not sure I understand why you disagree. Do you mean we should not delegate moral responsibility to technologies or that it is not possible that this responsibility can be delegated?

  • I'd like to see the whitepaper. Checked out some of your LinkedIn posts. My only critique is that Black Mirror warrants way more posts (And that San Junipero would be higher up on the list, but I'll let that one slide...). There are a couple of series that you mention, like Raised by Wolves, that I will def give a try.

    Also, do you look at Science Fiction...

  • You sent me down an interesting rabbit hole concerning dishwashers! It seems that European regulations call for strict compliance tests that take up to two weeks (, so at least testing is rigorous. However, it was a bit concerning to see that the Eco feature is used so little by consumers.

  • And sometimes the "conformism" is packaged to seem unique!

  • I like the example of the impairments tests and one of the strange things I read is that mouthwash can affect the test. So imagine not being able to start your car because you used mouthwash? It just goes to show how hard it is to think of what the unintended consequences might be.

  • @HelenR Hi Helen, you did mention similar things earlier (like a low tech island, which honestly I would prefer as well...). What concerns me is that people still choose to use technologies, even when they are clearly aware that these technologies are detrimental to their own well-being. Take for instance the Cambridge Analytica "scandal", even after people...

  • Haven't thought about those in years! Indeed a weird ethical dilemma

  • If you are interested in the topic of hostile architecture, take a look at Robert Rosenberger's book Callous Objects ( It helped me to look at my surroundings much more critically.

  • Kristy Claassen replied to [Learner left FutureLearn]

    @DennisStepan Your comment that "Some aspect of a technology, ostensibly adopted for one reason, can have impacts in a very different area of our lives" also reminds me of the debates about "Function Creep" or technologies that were designed for one purpose being used for another. I guess the question for me is how to distinguish between such changes in...

  • @HelenR This is why I find the rise of Citizen Science movements so promising as it allows for greater participation by the public, not only in scientific research but also when it comes to ethical questions. The challenge then is exactly what you mention, how do you get people who represent the whole of society involved.

  • Same here, I always end up with more questions than answers.

  • A question I have been wondering about is what a "really intelligent AI" is? Or even what we mean by intelligence?

  • Welcome Gustavo!

  • Hi Rodrigo, on the first point: I think so. Already with Google home, the voice assistant can recognize who is speaking. So to what extent is it also capable of mediating the relationship between family members? And on the final point: I completely agree. This becomes especially clear when it comes to the rendering of voice assistants and the way in which this...

  • Hey Robin, could you elaborate a bit more? Do you mean that the designing of the VA mediates the relation between the designer and user?

  • Interesting question. To take it further - do we want voice assistants to sound completely human? Or do we rather want it too still sound somewhat mechanical?

  • @KerryQuinn Thanks for the kind words Kerry! I must say, following the conversation on here has been fascinating.

  • I think you are right when it comes to this perspective challenging the dichotomy of the subject in the object. It allows us to understand the complexity between the human subject and the technological object to a greater extent. Technologies and humans shape each other. Even more than that, technology is part of us and shape our experience, interactions and...

  • What do you think Hans? For me it is an integral part of being human, but Im not sure what you mean with "voorwaarde" to being human

  • @JimCouch Do you have any formulations in mind? Could be a good start to the conversation.

  • Hi Hans, I'm not sure I follow your description of the greatest danger, could you give some more detail?

  • Heidegger's idiosyncratic use of language (or just making up his own words) doesn't help either. At least it also means that rereading always brings something new.

  • @HelenBrosens I agree, but how do we foster strong political will? Cambridge Analytica and other "scandals" made me very sceptical about the spaces available for the type of public discourses necessary.

  • @FabienBenetou Very good point Fabien! Maybe a mundane iPhone can also become something sublime? :)

  • @KarthikR If you are studying the question of authenticity it would definitely be worth your while to take a look at Soren Kierkegaard's thoughts on authenticity (Jaspers studied Kierkegaard extensively). While Kierkegaard searches for what it means to live life authentically within a religious context, Jaspers furthers his argument in the context of mass...

  • Hi Hugh, I understand Jaspers as doing quite the opposite. He warns against technical or instrumental rationality that erodes the authentic resources of human life. You might be correct that in his earlier work the role of the individual is underplayed in the face of these identically manufactured products, but in taking a more instrumentalist view he seems to...

  • Thanks for that John!

  • Very dystopian, but such a good series. It raises so many good questions.

  • I agree, I often wonder what it would have been like moving abroad if I didn't have the option of communicating with my family when I want to. It definitely has shaped the way we communicate drastically.

  • Yes, and the impact of these became even clearer during the pandemic.

  • Good point, at least the importance of designing technologies with specific values in mind is playing an increasingly important role. While we can't account for all the impacts, maybe we can mitigate/steer technologies in ways that will have a more positive impact?

  • @LiciaVitali That was also the first thing that came to my mind, one of my favourite books.

  • Thanks for the share Brian, I've never thought about that.

  • Good points Roel. This is also why it is so important to reflect on which values play a role in the design of technologies. A further question is also whether we can anticipate at least some of the impacts. The responsibility question is one that I find very complex.

  • That is well spotted Wayne. It does indeed set up a false dichotomy, which is why we needed some new theories to study the interaction of humans and technology.

  • Yes! I really like that last sentence there Renze.

  • Agreed, and that is why it is so important to consider the ethical implications in much more detail.

  • Hi Rene, I'm curious to hear your thoughts on predictive health care technologies? I find it a complex topic. On the one hand, doctors can, for instance, identify patients with a high probability of needing interventions through predictive algorithms, which is of course a good thing. On the other hand, I wonder whether relying on these technologies don't...

  • Some good points Twila. People seem to only think of new emerging technologies like AI, Robotics, Blockchain, etc. when considering societal impacts, but technology has been part of life for ages. Maybe we have always been technological beings?

  • Good thoughts Paul, and I think you are correct in questioning whether technologies are separate from us. It is also why mediation theory gives a bit of a better "point of departure" to think about technologies because it looks at the way that we relate to the world through technologies.

  • Hi Josine, its good to see you here! Hope this course will give you (and the Flying Cows team) a lot of food for thought.

  • It's from Plato's Phaedrus. I guess some things never change...

  • @ElizabethGreen You shouldn't. I am a PhD in Philosophy, but also an ordained minister :)