New media is using today’s digital technology like the internet and smart phones as a container to communicate and share ideas with those outside of the geographic sphere that you live in. From the angle that one will be defining New media its more along the lines of how it affects humans in situations of morality and ethics. New media itself and the containers that go along with them would not mean anything if humans didn’t give them meaning and shine a light on the emerging technologies of new media.
To begin my discussion about new media one feels it is important to understand Norbert Weiner, the pioneer of new media who discovered a condition in which human’s brain’s are hardwired for, that is worship and the search for knowledge, when that falls into play you have to analyze the situation of people constantly posting on social media or carrying their cellphones around with them like it is an extension of their own flesh or constantly streaming Youtube for the next TEDtalk or meme. From that point are you controlling the message or is the message controlling you? Are we just intaking large amounts of information and not being able to apply it to our lives in a positive way? This has every bit to do with new media because it’s humans who control the very devices that are supposed to be for our beneficiary or a source of “truth” to elevate intelligence, and perhaps even consciousness in the future.
Taking a look at new media today you could say it has indeed connected us, but in doing so it has also created a level playing field which you could call the “virtual class system” where many different people from the physical world from entrepreneurs and employees to game developers and government officials can be intertwined in the same community. This is important to new media because this is the very connection, that is the connection between the rich and poor and unknown that create a unique mix of “technological determinism and libertarian individualism” that will ultimately drive new media beyond the information age.
When discussing new media you have to acknowledge the issues of read-only vs read-write culture live in today. The issue of whether we just take in the information passively or do we interact with it and take action on or with the information we have been given? We as a culture obviously have our times where we do both; it’s not merely enough to give it a generalization, but Social media for example, has made humans a very interactive bunch in society and given even the smallest corners in the world a platform.
The human interaction with new media is the key to this whole thing I want to stress. While the Smart phones and social media platforms are a step in a direction of interacting with our technologies, that pales in comparison to the world in which you can overlay virtual reality into our current reality, Mixed reality entertains that idea. Even though Magic Leap doesn’t have a testing version, but with the billions of dollars being spent on this research one can only see the potential shift from the information age to singularity.
Moving to singularity with Bill Joy’s Why the Future Doesn’t Need Us, I think it is important to keep the human in mind while discussing this element of new media, but this agenda (I can’t even believe I had to say that) is being pushed farther off the table, or at least halfway when it comes to fusing of humans and robots together. I ask, “Who’s worried besides Bill Joy?” That is what new media has the potential of becoming over the coming decade as this picture has painted so vividly by Ray Kurzweil in his book The Age of Spiritual Machines. The picture of man being free from his container of bodily flesh, the internet having experiences accessible rather than just information about the experience, and the whole narrative of globalization and life itself we have written for us today. This is where new media is headed.
To conclude, I think it is important to remember that in our search for certain “truths” in technological advancements it’s not bad that we are searching for ways to bring longevity to mankind, but if we are only able to see part of the situation that lies ahead we must tread carefully, because we are in unchartered territory and there is no way of seeing the whole outcome until the leap of faith, or attempt has been made.
Justification for grade
My performance in the first half of the semester was lackluster and forgettable, but I know I turned it around when the second half of class came around. I started participating more consistently in class and contributing more to the discussion. It was the urge to understand this world of cyborgs and self-replicating nanotechnology where people want to see if they can play God that intrigued me the most if I could be quite frank. To see how we use new media right now at the moment, and talk about the very real possibility of implanting chips in brains or having intelligent AI makes all those ideas about the idealistic “future” science fiction movies seem within reach now.
I’ve posted the minimum requirements of post for this class, and have done my best to show how my posts relate to new media in my essay above as well as gotten better about my class attendance than I did in the first half. I honestly can say I have rebounded in this class to receive the minimum credit.