Work, Musings, Writings and Projects from FLEFF's Checkpoints Lab 2011
Tuesday, March 29, 2011
This week's student summary comes from Julian Weisner.
Since the assimilation of computers and machines into daily human life there have been questions about the benefits of these “advancements” Recently more than ever as a culture filled with technology I have seen and heard of many downsides to these “advancements”. Just as we have gained new materials and media for communication, art, and interaction; we have lost touch with who we were and how we used to communicate, depict ourselves, and interact. Hakim Bey discusses this idea in art and play, and portrays this quite vividly by pointing out our losses: “We miss the directness of play (our original kick in doing art in the first place); we miss smell, taste, touch, the feel of bodies in motion”.
There are mixed interpretations for why we seem to be growing more and more distant from what we were. There are fingers pointed at capitalism and greed, machines and computers augment production and accomplish tasks faster, and time, is, money, or as Anthony Dunne depicts, large corporations develop these technological instruments to coddle us [as in the masses(sheep)] into select roles, rooting out ingenuity and creativity and laying it all in the hands of top engineers and scientists in corporations who appease to the lack of human initiative, which allows us to let this easier way of life to envelope us.
Either way human life has forever changed due to our technology. We kill to keep up with it, quite literally. In central Africa there is an abundant amount of Coltan. An element necessary for cell phones, computers, and video games ... William Shaw depicts the conflict that has ensued as such:
The Congo has the world’s largest coltan reserves. These have been systematically fought over by the new kleptocrats, the warlords, and exported clandestinely via neighbouring countries, Uganda, Burundi and Rwanda. The boom in mobile phone sales coincided precisely with the eruption of what has been the world’s bloodiest conflict since WW2. Around 4 million have died so far in the violence and its aftermath. Disease and ongoing violence means that Congolese are still dying at a rate of 45,000 a month.
He even links the conflict to its true source…technology.
Hakim Bey writes about a new way of battling the invasion of technology into what should be purely human. Like creativity, interaction…life. He notes on the creation of Imediatism. A form of art or activity in which the product cannot be sold, and the action cannot be taken back. The idea is to create more human interaction and ideas, allowing us to root out the corporate and technology that has penetrated every medium of life. It isn’t to get rid of it, just to loose it for a bit and Play.