Week Two: Digital Culture


Week 2 is coming to an end and there’s no better time than the present to reflect upon our second class together. The most memorable part of the class for me was everyone’s presentations on the Digitcult report. Taking into account Moore’s Law: that technological capabilities are increasing exponentially, roughly doubling every 2 years, it is amazing that there is such a far reaching report available to comment on the present and future of digital culture. This thought actually derives from Alex Leese’s presentation. Thanks Alex, your explanation of Moore’s law and the general instability of digital objects is an interesting topic to consider on a Macro level. In general, I found the Digicult report to be very useful on a Micro level and since everyone did such a great job explaining their particular topic I feel compelled (in my first blog entry ever!) to try to put in words my thoughts on digital culture- on the Macro level.

It sometimes seems hard to put a frame to discussions on what technology means in the Museum or Gallery. What is it’s nature? What are it’s limitations? So far I’ve gathered that technology rapidly changes and that it can often seem to provide a utopian promise for the future- one which I look forward to and at the same time am skeptical of. For example why should I spending loads to purchase the ‘latest’ thing- like the I-phone? It is only going to be out of date in a couple months time. On the other hand- it is really cool, isn’t it? My point is that one some level I am confused on how I am supposed to feel about technology and therefore feel ill-equipped to answer some of the deeper epistemological questions in this area.

In our reading “The Shape of Things To Come” Simon Knell basically gets around epistemolgoical questions by saying: does it really matter what the myriad implications technology makes when all most people use it for is to check email? I can see his point (it certainly gets me out of the hole I am digging myself into here).

In sum, it seems that technology has added yet another layer of complexity to the context and content of objects- sigh. However, I am ‘looking forward’ to discussions about our post modern world and its increasing hybridness (just think of the I-phone!). It is a hybridness that stems not just from technology but from the compounding force it adds to our lives and by extension- the Museum and Gallery.