Web Personal Development in an age of code

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We live in a world where the influence of web is changing our personal development and behavior. The impact of the digital world and its computational code on everyday life and in the way we process language has become comparable to that of the speech and writing. The process of creation language and code have grown entangled and the lines that once separated human speech from machines code have become blurred.

Most of our lives we now pass it in a kind of limbo were we entangled the real world and the digital web based experiences. We leverage existence in the present history in some kind of web arcades, or digital spaces: electronic shopping centers: e-commerce websites such as Amazon, ebay, Apple, Itunes, lounges and social spaces: Facebook, Myspace, Twitter and much others television and music: YouTube, Spotify… And other navigational spaces, yellow pages and new “newpapers” hybrids such as Google, Bing, Yahoo…

These ways and processes of behavior are creating new languages that are constantly emerging, proliferating, and mutating into obsolescence. These are languages of our own emotional representations result of orders and disorders making a new way in the relation to this new digital world. These representations of language that we are using in our daily life are not any more just written in one single platform such as paper. At the moment we are dealing with mathematical engineered code languages in web developed different and moving platforms that co-exist and replace iron buildings, stone buildings, parks, gardens where we walk and interact in the material world.

In this digital world we are in the presence of a whole new concept of walking and interacting through digital buildings, web arcades where we walk and interact side by side with intelligent machines we call computers. N. Katherine Hayles’s outstanding book My Mother Was a Computer, Digital Subjects and Literary Texts provides a way of understanding deep the relations between these languages one created to interact with these new arcades – a language made of code and language. N. Katherine Hayles in this book considers how these interactions have affected creative, technological, and artistic practices and emotions.

And how in fact did all these interactions and new languages are changing our personal development and behaviour?

The major impact of digital – that is made of mathematical engineering code – on everyday life has become comparable or close to that of speech and writing. All present language and code somehow have grown entangled, mixed the lines that once separated humans from machines. This is processing profound mutation in our emotional and behavior actions. There are things we do in the physical world and others we do in the machine landscape. And the mix of both is having a deep impact in our life standards and development.

We live using a mix of technologies always in profound evolution, sometimes disappearing as fast as they come. The co-existence of the analogue to the digital, the shift from old technologies to new ones have become blurred and are making us change and adapt faster.

The book My Mother Was a Computer gives us a good insight about these processes and some tools necessary to make sense of these complex web of relationships. the author Hayles argues that we live in an age of intermediation and mutation that challenges ideas about language, subjectivity, literary objects, and textuality.

She considers that this process of intermediation, media interaction and exchange takes place where digital media interact with human traditions and cultural practices associated with older media, and here Hayles sharply portrays such interactions: how the machine code differs from human speech; she continues reflecting how electronic text differs from print. Also of major importance for me she makes us think on the effects of digital media on the idea of the self, our web personal development and behavior. She continues than though the effects of digital on printed books; also our conceptions, ideas of “computers as living beings”.

One of the stronger and most powerful conclusions on the book and on the subject is (something I have been thinking as well and share) is the possibility that the human brain and consciousness itself might be computational. This is somehow logical once computers were created and developed by humans.

Another important fact to reflect is the idea that this new language of humans interacting with code, machines brings and pushes the borders of emotional orders and disorders and ultimately we can envision a subjective cosmology wherein we humans see the universe, our daily life and the implications of our acts through the lens of digital, the computational as part or equal to a part, continuation of the brain and the due perception we have from the world.

The challenge now, and I know this is a polemic article and reading of the relations between human and machines and the development of our language, is how are we going to continue evolving and managing our web personal development? I let the answer to each one of us, but as a provocation we need in fact to push our boundaries we are no longer just humans! 😉

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