Wednesday, March 9, 2011

The Language of New Media Chapters 1-2

It is fascinating to see how we see and consider certain media as a whole, unified concept, when it can be broken down to numerous individual elements. This what is so interesting about the second book, along with the fact that it provides a thorough analysis of media evolution, especially of the computer.
I would like to focus more on a specific element of new media, which is also mentioned in the book: automation. It is true that we have come a long way since 1985 for example, when as the author mentions, design software programs could draw 3D objects only out of certain geometric forms such as cubes, cylinders etc. The response time of the computer to process the user's request has rapidly improved as well. We now have ready to use 3D templates of flocks of birds flying in the sky or waterfalls. It is most obvious, at least to technology inclined people, that in movies such as "The Lord of the Rings", which depicted all those massive herds of beasts, technology has contributed a lot in making it look realistic. The production company made an extensive use of 3D technology, because they would not probably be able to have so many actors performing at the same time for a single scene. They would literally need a sea of people.
But doesn't all that automation take so much out of creativity? And given the rapidly increasing rate of automation in any technology related activity, where will it lead?
Although humans have still a significantly important role in the whole process, I think that it is reduced entirely on an intellectual level. Maybe, it is just that we have transitioned to a different type of creativity. Maybe we could even go to the extent of saying that creativity could be considered a "meta-attribute", in the sense that new kinds are born out of old kinds.
To sum up, I just want to say that sometimes it is kind of frightening to see all that automatization happening. And why is it so impossible that automatization would reach a point, where machines are going to be individual non-dependent beings, having a mind of their own?


  1. The question of whether automation removes something vital from the human experience is a longstanding one, and well worth raising in this context.

  2. Automation most certainly reduces creativity. For example why would I create a newsletter from scratch on my computer when I can just use a template and tweak it a little?