When I was just a kid, there was this notion of being ‘online’ and ‘offline’ the internet. Move forward 20 years, and there is only the notion of being online. We are always connected to each other, caught up in ambient awareness and a constant stream of information. This is because of wireless mobility, which has allowed us to create a new collective intelligence across the globe. As French cyberspace theorist, Pierre Levy stated, “no one knows everything, everyone knows something”, and the convergent process of new technology has allowed for everyone to share their ‘something’, no matter what it may be!
(Wikipedia is a great example of this)
This collective knowledge allows for prosumerists (as explained in my previous blog) to interact with and shape the internet system. For example, did you know the @ symbol on Twitter to address each other wasn’t developed by the creators of Twitter, but by the users?
However, this great system may not be able to remain this way for much longer. The creative industries are always trying to keep up with us active consumers. They’re used to us being passive, and are therefore taking a bit longer to adapt to this new online, prosumerist, collective knowledge lifestyle. The only risk for us, is if they manage to keep up and take control of this free labyrinth of information and sharing…
which they are currently in the process of doing.
The iPhone and Xbox360, for example, have been designed as STERILE appliances. This means they are pre-programmed and cannot comply with every program a consumer may want to use. They say these devices are to stop the system from crashing and/or developing viruses, but does this safety come at a cost?
I’ve attached a youtube clip below, whereby Jonathon Zittrain clearly explains the consequences of a sterile appliance.
So my advice to you? Stay away from these sterile appliances and stick with PCs and Androids. We need to be able to share our innovations, without Apple or any other industries telling us how to channel them.