Last week digital utopian darlings Miro Shot released their debut EP Servers, featuring the previously unreleased track, “Lifeforms”. The song, which features the Macedonian Symphonic Orchestra, is rooted in themes around the data that is collected about us, the way it is used to make us feel certain things and act a certain way. As the collective pointed out in a recent Facebook post, it’s important to be aware of the dark parts of technology, there are plenty of reasons to embrace the deluge of technological developments that are being integrated into our lives almost on the daily. As they're quick to point out, for every Cambridge Analytica scandal we have things like Patreon empowering creators with new ways to earn a living.
I don’t usually give homework, but if you have extra time after immersing yourself with Servers for an appropriate amount of time, I invite you to sit with Big Data’s “Business of Emotion” for a sec and then return back to “Lifeforms”. Both approach the themes of data and behavioral targeting, but I find it really interesting how differently the approach to the subject matter is and how they end up informing each other. With “Business of Emotion”, as delivered from the view point of the behavioral targeting algorithm, it’s very quick to point out all that data mining and behavioral targeting there to do is make us feel good so we become addicted to it. With “Lifeforms”, Miro Shot have chosen to insert themselves into the conversation by bringing up personal responsibility. It’s a nuance that you really shouldn’t miss as we continue to shape the future around us. Technology is only “evil” or “bad” because certain humans make it that way, intentionally or not. Starting to realize that Big Data’s not necessarily a pessimist about the future, just not the leader (or Leaders) to point us in the direction of how to ensure we’re gearing up for the brightest and best future possible.