Demystifying Technology

As ubiquitous as technology is nowadays, it remains a fairly opaque aspect of my life. I often feel I do not have the tools to understand how different systems work, and end up relying on others to tell what things do, or what I can do with them. My interest in Interactive Media stemmed from a desire to further understand technology both in technical terms and in terms of its sociopolitical dimension. I am not able to put forth a satisfactory definition of computing—I can only say, for example, that it largely entails the use of recurring mathematical operations to perform a host of different tasks. However, I think this has been enough to have a profound impact in my life. I have been able to demystify a lot of the technology around me, and grow more aware of how it operates and how much it can actually do. I do not see technology as the solution to all the world’s problems, and I also do not think technology itself has the ability to impact our lives negatively. Instead, engaging with interactive media and art through software has reaffirmed my belief that we should all strive to understand technology in order to make it work for (most of) us instead of against us. That we must fight the urge to leave it to others to deal with the technicalities, because those technicalities (and the biases that are built into them) can affect our lives in profound ways.