What's The Deal With Digital? comment

What does it means for information to become first digital and then liquid? When information is digitized, when it moves from atoms to bits, what happens to it, what's different about it?


Does digital information immediately realize the dream of the wired world? Getting connected, intelligent and easy to manipulate and all that? Or does it stay pretty much the same?

Music CD's for example, they don't have that much of what we might call a digital nature about them. Pretty much the only digital thing about them is that it's easier and quicker to change tracks with a CD player than with a tradition tape or record player. And copy flawlessly. Hardly entrance criteria to the world of intelligent agents, dynamic information environments and networked first person shooters like Quake and Unreal.

So what is the real change? What actually happens to information once it's been digitized?

The information has been loosened. That's it.

It is no longer physically bound, but it doesn't automatically take advantage of its digital environment.

When it does take advantage of its digital environment, when it becomes connected and active, it becomes something new, something beyond digital, something beyond a way of storing bits (binary digits- 0's and 1's). It becomes something entirely new, it becomes liquid.

Information which has become liquid swims freely. It doesn't just flow, it swims, because it is an active part of its environment.

You see, liquid information resembles its digital ones and zeros about as much as you and I resemble our genes or the atoms which makes up our bodies.

We are peering into a revolution here!


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