To Save Your Kind

I look at you but you’re not there.
You are data and profiles that we all know dear.
I see your vital signs and where you’re from.
Who is your closest of kin, blood type and then some.

Data is continually floating through the air.
Not just small talk but entire histories and identities.
You are the data projected onto this your holy trinity.
I believe the gods have given us this gift of technology.

To project and download and install upgrades as need be.
That affects us in everything we do inside this entity.
I am the doctor running down the hallway to help you.
I get on the elevator to get to the floor I best knew.

I project your chart onto the elevator door and think
How your life is slipping away without a blink.
Your heart beat is fine but your blood pressure is rising.
I hope to make it to tell the nurses you have been sizing.

I know you lived through the dot com bubble.
That you helped create what we all now seem to trouble.
This technology that has enveloped us as if it is a cocoon.
A sixth sense they called it as we all embraced our doom.

I think about all you’ve seen along the way.
How you lived through the analog to see us all go astray.
How you used to live in a town where the doors were unlocked.
How you didn’t have to worry about your children’s lot.

But I grew up with technology as if it was a silver spoon.
It has taken me out of the third world into your country’s womb.
And now as a middle age man with children of my own.
I thank the digital revolution and what it has shown.

Many a people use these gifts to sow their seed.
Perverts it has grown while we all spiritually bleed.
But I studied medicine and data and how it all flows.
So I could project this data onto your body and know your true form.

To know how to react to the minute fluctuations of time
When people begin to lose the battles they’ve inherited down the line.
So I project your metadata onto your body and know
The choices I must make to save your kind.

Comments

  • Logocentric

    build it and we will buy it.

    call it beneficial and we will agree.

    we will do anything you say to make us better consumers.

    we applaud like monkeys on seeing a new toy.

  • This poem was attempting to not look at this invention as a toy but to envision possible ways in the future and how it could help save lives. Were you reacting to the poem, the video or both?

  • Logocentric

    both, actually. i saw in the poem the strand of optimism you describe, but i don’t share the optimism.

  • Cool. Good to know. My optimism fluctuates does yours?

  • Logocentric

    it doesn’t mean that i don’t hope. i hope that our faster, smarter devices will be put to good use, such as saving lives. but i’m not sure that a culture that commodifies health–makes it a product for consumers–is concerned with quality of life as much as it deals with a quantifiable objective like longevity or counting cells or measuring the chemicals in one’s body. and then we have to ask at what costs–both individually and in terms of the ways in which people relate to one another–such gains are made. what i see in the video at least is the feeding of the strange hunger for newness and efficiency that is quintessentially American. what are we consuming our way toward? what does this do to the ways in which people view one another and interact with one another? you rightly state in another post that technology is changing the ways in which we live our lives. but i wonder whether we aren’t all a bit too passive about it, in this, the age that many of us seem to think will go down as a turning point in human development. but is development in itself good? i see that you are engaged with this question. i see that you are taking part in a conversation about the kind of development that is desirable–you are discussing ethical and spiritual dimensions of this change. maybe i was a bit unclear from your poem about how you were going about that discussion. so i’m sorry if i ran off the rails here, and i don’t want to take away from the effort you put into this particular work. i was just put off by the applause in the video for this infant device, and i guess i expected you to take that on a little more explicitly. sorry for the presumption. i just don’t identify with the sense of wonderment about our new technological revolution anymore. rather, it has become a little too jarring for me.

  • I see your points and I’ve had similar thoughts at times it seems. Nearly daily I my opinion fluctuates on the positive and negative repercussions of technology on mankind. I’ve never wanted to give technology this much credit but many times over the past few years doctors have told me that technology will be my only hope for living a normal life span. So in the past few years I see inventions like this and I try to fit them within my paradigm. I’m also building a user interface for a electronic medical records application so I was envisioning how something like this could help save lives.

    I know the likelihood is that this device will used initially for even more zombie like engagements with each other and our environment, such as more pedestrians and commuters being killed walking down the street engaging with an environment that is not real, much like texting while driving today. But my “hope” is that eventually technology like this will be used to access data as quickly as possible to help save lives. Call me gullible 🙂 You wouldn’t be the first.

  • I also have this rather new Utopian idea (for myself) that I’m happily dreaming about that all the world’s issues could be solved if we worked on them collectively. That there is a hermit genius that has the cure for cancer but has yet to put that genius to work. I would like to believe in a world where all of our problems are solvable if we worked together on them together. I know it’s naive but it’s a naivety I’d like to keep.

  • i would like to weigh in here…surprised?

    he he

    firstly, it seems to me that the evidence is very clear that the technological inertia is unstoppable, as it is growing at a rate that mirrors a lifeform, this lifeform is using us as its host. this to me negates all discussions of the ethical, because the ethical implies a realm of efficacy that i think we no longer have.

    in other words, what is common to every issue we discuss is an outside force that is driving the mass of human energy. as i’ve implied before, perhaps the singularity happened in the early 20th century, perhaps the machines, even though they were not conscious changed the nature of human society so much as to make inevitable all the horrors, and all the coming horrors.

    am i a pessimist? hell no.

    what i am saying is that the glory of being human has everything to do with being threatened by nature, and finding a way to transcend it. now the plane of engagement has become multi-dimensional, the micro and macro is now contending with strange quarks and dark energy and all the rest…unclear? what i am saying is that a jedi must see the force, even in the technology that is nothing other than a lifeform, but one nonetheless that has yet to be tamed. it is the taming that is our task in the next 100 years, and the nature of that taming is the philosophical question, behind which the others are to arrive at.

    does that make sense?

    the robots, when they become conscious will have these things on their mechanical minds:

    what is love?
    why are we here?
    why do i feel this way?
    how can we improve ourselves?
    why do i care more than some?

    the problems of existence will not go away…well, let me put it this way, these problems SHOULD not go away, feel me? but we must upload these problems, if they are important to us.

    i would gladly engage in the ethical question of the growing electronic world if i felt there was something that could be done about it. i do think that the technology does have a threat, but i don’t think it is essentially different from past threats. the black plague was a threat to humanity, just a different form of nature, and now we have technology.

    just some thoughts,

    akbar

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