Wednesday, October 9, 2013

Virilio, "Open Sky," Part 2

Smaller, Faster, Smarter

This section opens with with an admiration of the mosquito; how it can detect its prey, draw blood painlessly, and function completely at such a microscopic level. This marvel is then compared to the abilities of a machine if (when) we harness the mosquito's abilities for our benefit. Contrary to the popular saying, it seems that smaller is better.

"...little by little, technological reductionism is spreading to all branches of communications and telecommunications."

While this book was originally published in 1997, it was edited in 2008. The original edition came out before Twitter existed and I doubt this quote was changed in the newer version; making his statement completely true and forthcoming. Twitter is the epitome of the fast-paced digital age. With only 140 characters, a person can share breaking news, promote a product, cause a frenzy, or try to trick people into thinking they're funny. 

Although some scoffed at the idea of a social media sharing website that restricted how much you could share, Twitter is one of the top social media sites. According to Technogist, Twitter is the second most popular social media site, behind Facebook. It has been especially great for businesses and media, allowing for both interaction with customers/fans and promotion.

'I was born into a century in which the whole earth had been discovered, whereas the Ancients scarcely knew a third of it.'

--Jérome Cardan
This is an incredible thought, when you apply it to technology today. To think that 100 years ago the modern X-Ray tube was invented and was considered revolutionary because it could show photographs of deep anatomy and tumors is amazing. Today we have machines that can show almost everything inside our bodies, more than with just X-Ray machines, but also with MRIs and others.

With that much progress in a seemingly short amount of time, it's almost terrifying to think about what might exist even in another 50 years. Especially if there are tiny, robotic mosquitos flying around and sucking our blood as part of some scientific experiment.

There are some theories that these crazy sci-fi inventions have already been created and are just waiting to be released; do you believe these conspiracy theories? Why or why not? What is the next big technology that you imagine being created?

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