Apple CEO Tim Cook Discusses Overusing Technology in New Interview

Apple this morning announced the expansion of its "Everyone Can Code" initiative to 70 educational institutions across Europe, and following the announcement, Apple CEO Tim Cook spoke at Harlow College in Essex, one of the schools that will adopt the new curriculum.

The Guardian shared several of Cook's comments, which covered overuse of technology and boundaries for children.

Cook said he believes there are concepts that can't be taught using technology, and in many courses, technology shouldn't dominate.

“I don’t believe in overuse [of technology]. I’m not a person that says we’ve achieved success if you’re using it all the time,” he said. “I don’t subscribe to that at all.”

Even in computer-aided courses, such as graphic design, technology should not dominate, he said.

“There are are still concepts that you want to talk about and understand. In a course on literature, do I think you should use technology a lot? Probably not.”

According to Cook, Apple cares about children out of the classroom, a topic that's notable as Apple investors recently urged Apple to do more to protect children from smartphone addiction.

Apple in early January said in a statement that it thinks deeply about how its products are used and the impact they have on people, including children. Apple takes its responsibility to protect children "very seriously," and has promised more robust parental controls for iOS devices in the future.

Though he does not have children of his own, Cook says in his own personal life, he "put some boundaries" on his nephew. "There here are some things that I won't allow; I don't want them on a social network," he said.

On the topic of learning to code, Cook spoke passionately, as he has done several times in the past. Learning to code, he says, is more important than learning a foreign language.

Cook said: "I think if you had to make a choice, it's more important to learn coding than a foreign language. I know people who disagree with me on that. But coding is a global language; it's the way you can converse with 7 billion people."

Cook's full commentary, which covers diversity, coding at an early age, and the importance of the press, can be read over at The Guardian.

Top Rated Comments

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35 months ago
Is it just me or did the headline got his message wrong?
Score: 38 Votes (Like | Disagree)
Avatar
35 months ago

Is it just me or did the headline got his message wrong?

Yup. The headline makes it sound as though he believes the exact opposite of what he believes. It’s taken out of its context, because in the context it is clear he thinks tech should not be used all of the time.
Score: 15 Votes (Like | Disagree)
Avatar
35 months ago


Article Link: Apple CEO Tim Cook: I Don't Believe in Overuse of Technology ('https://www.macrumors.com/2018/01/19/apple-ceo-tim-cook-technology-overuse/')

... says the CEO of a multinational technology company, whose compensation is tied almost entirely to revenue and profit performance.

That's like asking an ExxonMobil exec whether he believes oil use is related to climate change.
Score: 15 Votes (Like | Disagree)
Avatar
35 months ago
Cook said: "I think if you had to make a choice, it's more important to learn coding than a foreign language. I know people who disagree with me on that. But coding is a global language; it's the way you can converse with 7 billion people."

I’ve been a software engineer/designer for 25+ years, travelled a lot, and speak 4 languages. Here are my issues:

* How much experience does he have with coding?
* How much experience does he have with living in another country, learning another language, and getting to know another culture?
* Coding is a shallow term and only addresses the most mundane aspect of creating software.
* Coding is a horrible term and does not do right to the complex task of creating software.
* Coding will disappear and will make place for higher level tasks that require a deep understanding of things. (Simpler tasks will be taken over by AI.)
* It's not explained how you can converse with 7 billion people when you know how to throw a few if and loop statements together. (Because that's the level that most people will be willing to reach.)
* People can't often converse using natural language, why would coding be better?
* There are many programming languages.
* ...

I find this an ignorant remark at best.
Score: 14 Votes (Like | Disagree)
Avatar
35 months ago

Is it just me or did the headline got his message wrong?

Agreed. His opinion is clearly that overuse of technology *is* something he believes in and thinks should be avoided.
Score: 11 Votes (Like | Disagree)
Avatar
35 months ago

Learning to code, he says, is more important than learning a foreign language.

Oh how mistaken he is. If I can repeat my young life, learning more foreign languages would be the top things I would do. Simply learning a language like Chinese can take you to far more places than knowing java/phyton. People do business using human language, not codes.
Score: 10 Votes (Like | Disagree)

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