Media, Information and Technoculture 2500A/B Lecture Notes - Lecture 12: Mao Ii, Mind Share, Counterforce

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MIT 2500B: Meaning of Technology
Week 12: Poetry
March 28
Our capacity to express what we don’t know how to say yet goes undeveloped for specific
reasons
Modern technology has produced a global situation in which hundreds of millions of people
communicate in a manner that is quantitatively superior than before
What matters most is not what we do with the technologies that we are given, but the ways
those same technologies strain or delimit what we do, and affect our thinking about the world
Each one of us is deeply integrated with the seemingly unassailable social order that resists the
adoption of a common language
The more readily we recognize our own needs in the images of need under the present system,
the more readily we understand that the system degenerates
The forces determining our temporary life are insidious
Maintaining the illusion that we are free from all forces so that we continue to reproduce them
The world provides you with everything needed to reproduce it
Life is becoming uncanny – nihilism at work is governed by a way of being so dangerous that
orients our will in a falsifying premise
There will be no place left for us, merely an appearance of that place
Premise that requires us to compete in order to be treated decently
How many times have we heard that life is changing?
Each new product launch, new venture, there is always an unreasonable expectation that it will
change the world and make it a better place
Technology is really just one of the primary weapons in ensuring that nothing changes
Maintain control over the popular narratives of what modern technology means
We can find everything we need instantly and anywhere
Determines the shape of all our fantasies of what we can do with technology
Imagery is all about power and control, the dream of having the means to produce everything
we need at any time, this is the prevailing narrative about the meaning of technology
oReproduced everywhere without us knowing it
Each time we do it, we don’t just reproduce, we rediscover our own faulty premise
Our fantasies and thoughts of what we can do with technology are themselves so narrow as a
result of this heavy mediation – these thoughts and fantasies aren’t our own anymore
Controls what technology means while systematically working to establish a free relationship to
it
What we think technology means determines how we develop the world according to it
The question is, how does one think this? How does one break away from the usual narratives
about technology, when our lives are flooded with imagery that tells us the same things
constantly?
oRecognize the images for what they are by seeing the connections between them and
reading the patterns that they produce across multiple media platforms
oPay close attention to the discourse that attends these images, makes them appear as
true
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