Big Data will destroy you: Techno-jitters

Once self-copying memes had arisen, their own, much faster, kind of evolution took off. – Richard Dawkins, The Selfish Gene

Dominic Basulto imagines that digital devices are a kind of primordial soup in which “digital bits” of Big Data will propagate to the point where “they don’t need us anymore.”  He speculates upon Richard Dawkins’ theory of memes:

Where things become both exciting and creepy is if the data replicators (data memes) become truly “selfish” and start to challenge the classic genetic replicators (genes). It’s not just that Big Data wants to become Bigger, it’s that it may eventually want to out-compete our genetic material.

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Big Data will destroy you: Techno-jitters

Rhetorics of Survivance

You may not be who you think you are.

Enter the trickster, Gerald Vizenor, the originator of “survivance”.

Deborah L. Madsen writes in Understanding Gerald Vizenor:

In opposition to terminal creeds, Vizenor seeks in his writing to promote the concept of “survivance.” He tells Isernhagen: “if we have dominance — in other words, a condition that’s recognizable as a world view — then surely we have survivance, we have a condition of not being a victim.”55 Like his understanding of postmodernism, survivance is for Vizenor a condition and not an object. It is a way of thinking and acting in the world that refuses domination and the position of the victim. In Fugitive Poses (1998) Vizenor writes: “[S]urvivance, in the sense of native survivance, is more than survival, more than endurance or mere response; the stories of survivance are an active presence… .”56 Survivance is not passive survival but active resistance as well; it is the refusal of the insistence upon tribal people as “Vanished,” or as tragic victims, or as ig/noble savages caught in an unchanging past, or as the vanguard of an idealized New Age future. Chris Lalonde points out that “with his fictions [Vizenor] does what Foucault argues is what makes one insane in the eyes of the community: he crosses the boundaries of the dominant bourgeois culture in order to reveal the lies upon which it is based.”57

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Rhetorics of Survivance