Part of what I am writing about is deeply rooted in historicism, i.e. looking back and micro-analyzing decisions to then see if they form part of a larger pattern to then explain why shit happened they way it did – or also known as history. Now, I realize that complex structures, and as far I am concerned everything around us is so complex that most people including myself on bad days, are almost willing to sell their soul for simple answers. Fact is, there aren’t any and by Newton, I know how much that sucks or in academic speak, yes it is troubling and in itself the first step to the dark si.. argh, yes I watch Star Wars over the weekend.
Regardless, one little interesting tad bit of clarity reveled itself to me recently – and I felt it interesting enough to share it on here for now. Again, it is a micro-managed thought out issue of a much larger complex interlocking issues that all may potentially result in our current reality – and that is also a wasps nest worth talking about, but not now.
I am super entrenched in discussions about AI’s, ethics, automationization and practical applications and thus possible future realities at this stage, that has led me to try and figure out, historically, how the fuck we ended up with the internet as it is now. I use and work a lot with the internet as it was originally intended to be used, a digital library so to speak – and not how once Web 2.0 was conceived, is used now. Around 6 year ago I read this great little anti- web2.0 book, called the „cult of the amateur“ – and it was the first time someone had put the warning bells that had been ringing post FB launch in my book – full disclaimer, I have been on FB since day one and loved it- now I am just fascinated with Skynet3.0, like a rabbit in the headlights would be.
Anyway, the history of the web is fascinating and necessary to understand if we want to look at what is happening now and more importantly, what we need to do differently to get out of this shithole of a world in which the president of the united stats and the supreme leader of North Korea have a dick measuring contest on twitter that brings nuclear Armageddon closer than the Cuban missile crisis ever did.
Essentially, we made a fundamentally flawed, terrible design decision back in 1995, that has damaged democratic political processes, crippled our ability to truly understand the world around us, and led to the angry upheavals of the present decade. That mistake was to fund the build-out of the public World Wide Web—as opposed to the earlier, government-funded corporate and academic internet—by monetizing eyeballs via advertising revenue.
Again, micro-managing complex systems but I believe this to be the root of it. As the saying goes, if something stinks, follow the money. Now, a world with out the internet is stupid and totally unrealistic and illogical. The original concept behind is genius and revolutionary still today: global immediate access of information. wow. I mean talk about a game changer.
What we have now, or to state it more clearly, how the majority of people use the internet now and how easy it is to manipulate our world through it is beyond frightening and needs to be put to an end.
The combination of user generated content, the incredibly vast speed of evolution of AI’s and their way of working and creating user / faux-user generated content to build consensus in the real world is something we aren’t equipped to deal with yet. Ethics play no role in capitalism and our present day Internet is JUST that, make no mistake. Like pigs being herded to the slaughterhouse we don’t even see that we are the bacon and your black mirror is just waiting to kill should you no longer serve a purpose.
Or, the current mesmerizing virtual world is the biggest ponzi scheme that you haven’t heard of yet and man are we all getting played.
This train of thought is playing a big part of my current thinking right now, and this is just to serve as an inspiration for you to do some thinking. It’s important to remember that just because it exists doesn’t mean it has to be used or that it cannot be changed.