Them There End Days
We’ve had a lot of conversations about “privacy” as a cultural value, because we are staffed by huge dorks who have become cyborgs to some extent. Certainly, in the strip, we declare that concerns in this vein are the sole purview of unmedicated psychotics, but that’s obviously not true. Issues of privacy today are incredibly complex, and speaking from my own experience, the more engineering knowledge you have the more freaked these kinds of things make you.
Living in the future is cool. I have thus far mostly enjoyed the progressive revelation. It has weird effects, occasionally; I came to realize when I was dreaming last night that the details were slowly merging into the visual field as though swapping to steadily increasing bitrates. When my children are playing, they tell me to come watch their newest “comedy clip,” but they don’t want to show me a screen. Even their imaginative play is contained within the metaphor of the “clip.” I can pause it and rewind it. This happens.
I was here for the whole thing, and I still can’t believe how fast we went from ripping, to peer to peer, to fear mongering, to industrial co-option via proprietary formats married to proprietary hardware, to selling clean MP3 files. I don’t think that anthropomorphizing information in terms of its desires is especially useful, but we can certainly look at what happens and come to conclusions. I don’t especially want to live in a world where people have Google Glass all the time, but I didn’t know that until my friends walked around with them. Doesn’t mean it wasn’t worth doing.
Now they want to sent shit to your house with their skydroids. Fucking try it, see how many fall down. This seems like a good way to shred housecats to me, I don’t know. Is that worth getting some Certs right away? Maybe not. But do we need to figure out how to live with mechanical creatures, how to give them their own space in society, their own ways and means? I think so.
It’s not like you live in houses one day, and then you live in a series of graduated platinum cylinders the next. First, you have to live in cylinders made of less valuable material. Actually, first you need to be converted into fluid, and commingled with that liquid consciousness which calls itself “The Flow.”
Then you can do the cylinder thing.