stuart: "I think my comment about a future society moving into space was a bit of an unnecessary aside."
perhaps to you it is, but to me it speaks volumes about your acceptance of/desire for imperialist/colonialist type activity - in the supposed interest of "humanity". there is a long history of that kind of behavior (with the same justification/rationalization), and it is a very significant point in any discussion of anarchist thought and action.
as to the whole technology question, there will always be disagreement about that here, at some level. and i think that is absolutely necessary, given where the world is today, along with the hugely varying desires of different individuals and groups. i just wish folks would leave morality (implicit or explicit) out of the discussion. given the extent to which thoughtful people disagree on the subject, i think it is pretty clear that there is no objective "good" or "bad" about it. for me the question needs to be framed in the context of people's desires and priorities - which will always vary from individual to individual (and group to group). folks often bring up the idea of some "collective good" (perhaps in line with your "humanity"); yet, there is no single "collective" which would all agree on what is "good" or not.
also, it is not necessary for one to exist - or even desire to exist - in a complete vacuum of self-sufficiency, in order to be staunchly against the idea of some overarching "society" which forms the basis for some ideal life for all. imo, that is a false dichotomy driven by a tendency toward binary thinking.
it is, however, difficult for me to envision a life filled with advanced industrial technology that does not require such a massified (and largely homogenized) collective existence.
there is the concept of "appropriate technology", which used to be discussed (maybe still is) among certain green and anti-civ types. given the world as it actually exists today, i find that a much more interesting and relevant discussion than the all-or-nothing binary of tech: yes or no.
in addition to the comment by boles about intent and funding sources regarding high tech, there is the unavoidable discussion of the impact of designing and creating these technologies, on the multitudes of lives that had absolutely no input into the decisions behind those activities.
i don't call this place "a hive"....if anything, the "technology is a force for good" ideology is something i hear from almost everyone i meet who does not consider themselves anarchist....those of us here are but a few straggling bees who have flown away from that hive and happened to have found each other in cyberspace.and i don't know why my comment about "conformity is an obsession" for george costanza got deleted....it has some relevance, and i find it quite funny.