Monday, December 2, 2013

Working Post: Staying Afloat in the Digital Sea

Working Thesis Statement

In a world that is becoming more and more digital, it is important to be able to understand this digital realm and find a way to create a personal, even human, space in that realm in order to avoid the singularity.

Preliminary Exploration

The idea stems from my first paper earlier in the semester, as well as Dr. Burton's spiral post.

Relevance

The influence of the digital world swings like a pendulum between extremes of how strong it is. Some people try to make sure they are not influenced at all by technology, wanting to be a more primitive culture, while another extreme would be to have every single piece of new technology, constantly wanting the next big thing and allowing it to dictate every aspect of their life. It's not really possible anymore to avoid all aspects of technology, but finding a way to inject humanity into technology is relevant because it is how we can find a way to master the machine of the digital world on a personal level.

Format

Somewhat short editorial essay, approximately 1200 words.

Outlet

Digital Humanities Quarterly: The Literary 

Curation

Curation of Content: I have found a lot of different content (there is no shortage about technology in the technological world) but a lot of times it seems repetitive and like there isn't anything new. So the ones that I feel that fit in with my argument the best are all found in this blog post.

Curation of Secondary Sources:  For secondary sources, I've also found sources discussing the different aspects for and against singularity, and being educated in both the real and digital worlds.

Curation of Community: These are the online communities that I found that are talking about the ideas that have spurred my thinking:
- Google+: Accelerating Technology & Future Tech
- Google+: Artificial Intelligence
- Twitter: #singularityu

Social Proof

This idea came about as I was talking to a friend who is a high school English teacher. She has structured her classes around the theme of "what makes us human?" and I especially enjoyed talking with her about her Science Fiction unit and how humans and technology can interact. I started thinking about that in regards to the digital realm and in our time reading "Moby Dick." I started asking people what they think about the relationship between humans and technology through Facebook, Google+, and the blog, and it is an idea that I found that people enjoy talking about and everyone has their piece to say.  This just pushed me more towards the idea that it is on a personal level that we must find a way to "master the machine."

Next Steps

The next step that I will be taking is to draft my editorial and creating more of the connections between people's opinions and the more scholarly and academic sources that I have found. The idea from my first paper was that in order for people to "master the machine," they must find a way to make an imprint in the digital world by learning how to use certain aspects of the technology to their advantage. I am also continuing to look into how people can actually do that through things such as DIY, music, etc. in similar ways as I have done throughout my process of blogging.