I had a psychology teacher in high school - GO FALCONS - who gave me a basic explanation of this movie. Well it disappointed me at the time, but now I get it - that man has become the tool. Man has grown dependent upon the tools he created.
Let's think about this it starts with our primate ancestors after encountering this mysterious object known as a monolith they use a bone from a dead animal carcass to not only hunt, but to assault another group of our primate ancestors. This primate ancestors throw this bone in the air and suddenly this bone becomes a satellite. So the tools of humanity evolves and become technology that we depend on.
Thankfully we haven't created this all-powerful human like computer that could prove capable of killing its own human creators. Hopefully 2001 with is slow pace, pre-Star Wars special effects, lack of dialogue, or even stunning visuals will be cautionary tale about the evolution of the computer. The computer which is just another tool created by man.
Here's an homage to 2001 from the YouTube channel VideoSpaceFX who recreates the intro of this classic film. You see an eclipse from a perspective beyond the moon. [VIDEO]