Sometimes you have to spend some time off, and I tried to do that over the summer… with not too much success I might add. You can hear my latest Podcast with Virtual Futures:
…but it has been a summer of scary disasters….
With the influx of information surrounding sex/Robot tech/philosophy/design/AI available there is way too much to think about. Whilst nature – inspired by our mistreatment – wreaks death and havoc across the Atlantic and over Asia at the time of writing, it puts things coldly into perspective as to how our lives have become a microcosm of self, with intimacies reliant on digital artefacts that do not exist in the physical world, such as sentiment and longing. Floods and natural disasters destroy the physical – leaving the digital to remain in the ether of our memories that reside not only in the electrical impulses in our heads but also accessed through our devices as physical object. With no power, or no interdependent support how would you express your attachment and affection for a loved one in such a disastrous situation if they were not with you? Remember those discussions from the past? If the ‘three minute nuclear warning’ was suddenly announced would you have intimacy/sex with the person nearest you as everything is blown to smithereens? What if there wasn’t a real person near by… what if it was just technology… ? What if your loved one is telepresent in that technology?
During contemporary times of disaster, mobile phones signify attachment as we see news stories of those frantically trying to contact their loved ones, or send texts, take video and make those final messages. After the earthquake the sound of mobile phones are left wringing in the rubble unanswered as the loved one desperately tries to contact the missing. After the flood the photos on the mobile of ‘what was before’ gives a painful reminder of the notion ‘you don’t know what you’ve got ‘til it’s gone’. Technology and attachment during times of urgency become part of salvation and connection to that which is lost.
The discussion of sex and love with robots and our attachment to technology therefore has a context that can reveal a reaction to an underlying thread of anxiety and loss and how we transfer and react to those during times of stress. Attachment to our technology is revelatory and crucial to understanding our experience of some of our final moments amplified in isolation, is a tool of sublimation and love, that can be recalled and revealed over and over again. Then attachment and grief are connected through devices and then we are looking at technology, sex and death… and that’s another discussion entirely…