Amazonian tribe use Google Earth:
If we consider what is digital culture and what isn’t then I feel it is hard to draw a line between what one could consider a-digital, non-digital or ex-digital, I am struggling with the linguistics here…
For example the Amazon tribe using Google Earth, would have their cultural map (is the natural environment part of culture? I think it is we do shape it), re-mapped digitally, it is now part of a global map, which we are all part of , and affects us through political and social action. This action taken as a result its associated digital space thus has an effect on the physical space.
We all live digitally. Conversations we carry out over the internet are mediated digitally, indeed may never be expressed other than in a digital context. People meet over Skype and may never see each other in’ real’ life. True this reflects the distinction between form and contents, with data digitally transmitted but thoughts held in our conscious.
Many of us carry mobile phones, iPads, laptops… extensions of our consciousness, our memories, our ideas. Tracked and positioned, we lead our lives online and offline.
I was struck by the visual similarities between a picture of Google servers and the (symbolic) spaceship in Stanley Kubrick’s movie.There are a number of ideas emerging from this, all relating to juxtapositions of utopian/distopian.
The (simulated) experience Hal verbalises, is perhaps resonating among these servers, with similar anxieties expressed by Google users. Google is trying to help by directing them to the correct helpline or website. At the same time, engineers push buttons and pull switches to save. Cloud trends verbalised the nation’s mood via social networking.
Machines have no feelings, despite Hal claiming otherwise. In the clip ‘the computer talks’ and the human is silent, except for the laborious breathing. We know man’s action is to control the machine, humans program (computer language) but there is always a threat of losing that control. After all Dave was programmed too.
Can Google be silenced? How do governments control corporates?
Hal’s actions were unethical, to destroy. Search engines support a capitalistic drive, in support of consumerism and economic growth. How can we be certain that technological developments will be ‘for the best’…?
2/4/2013, note: in all this I got Dave and Hal muddled up… for the record: Dave is the person, Hal the computer, now corrected…
The material supporting the immaterial
a few weeks ago during a surf, I noticed one of these images of a google server. Astonishing…the Hypereal estate according to Luke, as mentioned in Bell’s article