Online Life is Real Life

computing culture

published 2023-10-08 22:01

updated 2023-10-08 22:20

We keep making the mistake of determining that Cybrespace is somewhere else. Not physical, ethereal, somehow divorced from Reality.

It is not.

= The cloud is just somebody else's computer =

The infrastructure that upholds Cyberspace is very much physical. Data centres, communication links, radio towers, satellites. The energy that powers all of it also must come from the Earth. Computing already represents a significant portion of total energy usage, and it's increasing at an accelerating pace.

The influence wielded by the New Fiefdoms of Cybrespace is also very real. It's wedged it's way into every aspect of our lives, and continues to offer more services in the palm of our hands. In Bo Burnam's words, "They're coming for every second of our attention".

It's important not to exclude from the list of (information) ecosystems we inhabit. It is very much a place. The outcome of actions in that ecosystem are very real. It is interwoven with all other ecosystems too, not just the informational ones.