Category Archives: Lifestream

PURPOSE STATEMENT

PJ Fameli86

This blog is dedicated to developing my own personal digital literacy competencies and understanding of education and digital culture, and to share information with other like-minded sentient beings in order to collectively prepare for the complexities of the ‘digital age’ and to influence a positive future vision for humanity that uses the power of digital technologies wisely.

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Published on Jan 20, 2015

One hundred humanoid robots perform a synchronised dance routine in Tokyo on Monday. Each of the one hundred ‘Robi’ robots weighs just 1 kg (2.2 pounds) and stands 35 centimetres (1.1 foot) tall. The ‘100 Robi’ project was the brain child of Tomotaka Takahashi of Tokyo University. The synchronised dance lasted three minutes and went off without a hitch.

Week One: The Blurring of Boundaries between Human and Technology

The central theme of EDC Week One for me was the ‘blurring of boundaries.’  I think we witnessed together in our Togethertube Film Festival a collective sort of stimulating cognitive dissonance with each of the short films that we viewed, glimpses into the possibilities but also the risks of crossing the boundaries between human and technology. Simultaneously, we engaged each other across the world, blurring time and space, by interfacing with our digital technologies.  Miller notes that “boundary blurring” between machines and humans is particularly fundamental to the Science Fiction genre known as “cyberpunk.” (p. 207)

While ‘homo faber’ may have always had an intimate relationship with technology, stemming from a “wish or need to extend the boundaries of the body and to overcome its limitations in response to the surrounding environment” (Miller, p. 223),  the technician character “Steve” in Memory 2.0 forewarned of dangers of “over-exposure.”  Many of us now seem transfixed to our portable devices.  Miller (p. 221) notes the “somatic involvement” that mobile phones in particular “alter our sense of being in the world” and provide a sense of ‘connected presence’ (p. 221), or what Amber Case refers to as ‘ambient intimacy’ (e.g. always connected anywhere, anytime).

In sum, this strange new world portends to alter our ways of perceiving ourselves and our socio-material reality.  We all need a healthy dose of ‘digital education’ to know how to navigate across and between the boundaries of human and technology wisely.

Case, Amber. (Jan 2011) “We are all cyborgs now.” www.TedTalks.com.

Miller, V. (2011) Chapter 9. “The Body and Information Technology,” in Understanding Digital Culture. pp. 207-223, London: Sage.

We are all cyborgs now

I was introduced to this Amber Case TedTalk (7:53 min) in a previous MScDE course and I found it helpful to review it again as a departure point for this EDC course.  Case defines cyborg” as “an organism to which exogenous components have been added for the purpose of adapting to new environments.”  Case describes her as a “cyborg anthropologist.”

One of her themes that resonated with me this first week of our EDC course is that we all now are compelled to manage our ‘second self,’ that is, our ‘digital self.’  She observes that “anybody coming in new to technology is an adolescent online right now.” I have been thrust into sensations of what Case labels a “panic architecture” – a feeling that I can’t keep up because the tools are unfamiliar and my Twitter “embed codes are not available.”  I’m hoping this post will set me off on a more constructive trajectory.