Understanding the Cybernaut in Us

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The dynamic worlds of the internet are taking us   into a gap between being and becoming.  The gap that has always been between the signifier and signified is widened and rendered deep by the dance of worlds of the cyberspace. This barrier is growing today faster than ever before.  But this gap enables productivity. It renders the signifiers of digital world emptied of partial meaning and makes it  ready   for us to insert the meanings that we bring into it. The Asemiotic semiologies  in the internet then are semiotized to suits the desires of those who mediate their life on its  basis.  There is no one meaning that animates the dance of a set of signifiers in the web.  Each of us has become inventive and use hermeneutics that has become heuretics to write meanings with the alphabets/ signifiers that dance in the internet. As  we surf the net, we are actually composing our stories/narratives.  

Strictly speaking the internet has broken down our logic that is based on the principle of identity, contradiction and excluded middle.  We know that we can have several identities in the web, self can have larvae selves as taught to us by Deleuze and Gauttari.  Besides, the fact that we can insert meanings into the signifiers  that are  being dished out to us in the worlds of the internet, we can experience that there is no strick identity between the signified and the signifier. Thus, the principle of identity is demolished by the internet. As a result, we have made room to the return of the third which becomes the return of the supressed/ repressed, the unnamed, all that has been  not thought by our canonical either/ or thinking. Thus the excluded middle is exploding. 

Ulmer says that the logic of the internet and allied communicative technologies is governed by the principle of choreography.  He says that this logic does not choose between the meanings of the term but compose by using all the meanings. This means the logic of internet makes room for grammatology. This is a mode of saying yes to everything.  It connects the dots (write) in unexpected ways that leads to novel paradigms of thought. It is heuretic and inventive and thought generative. We are hybridizing the texts of the internet. We have become cybernauts who are using grammatology to make sense of the texts and textures of our mediated lives. The GPS of the web has become the EPS (existential positioning system) for us.  We are living a life mediated by the internet. Each of us is indeed a cybenaut in our own right. 

Our life mediated by the picto-ideo-phonographic writings of the web.  It is exactly a return to what we do with spoken/ phonic language while we write or speak. We use the phonetic alphabets (signifiers) and infuse meaning ( signified) into them. This meaning is found in the collective  langue universe that we have within our societies. But we are inventive too. We also assign our own meanings to what we speak or write. We are composing and therefore, are grammatologists.  Unfortunately, we are lost into the logocentrism of the language and have forgotten  our own role in the construction of the meaning while we speak or write. That is why we have to come to  realize that we have been always heuretics and clever users of grammatology. Today with the widening of the gap between the signifier and the signified, our dexterity at heuretics is become radical. 

With the growing gap between the sign and the signifier, we are facing the death of the signifier and we are left with the trace of the play of signs in the web. This is why Ulmer puts together electricity and trace and holds that we have come to electracy in a new world of electronic media.   We begin and end with nothing but the play of traces.  This play is digitized and electrified.  Our life is mediated by these traces  and we leave our traces on the various platforms of the internet to be used as raw material by the world of big data analytics.  This is why traceology cannot be overlooked. It has become the alphabets of our life.  We are into plasmatics of the trace. We adept them to our conditions. when we panic like the Disney games, our legs become elongated when we are amazed our necks grow longer.   The cyber word is shaping our life. 

Traceology is mediating our life.  This is akin to drawing. It shows the power of a line.  We are drawing/ writing our lives using  the resourceful traces that we find in the internet.  We are plasmatically (plasticizingly) transforming the texture of our life as cybernouts.  This has impact on our political life.  There is a trace in democracy. We are simply left with traces of democracy in an age of electracy where our life has become a plasticized dance of plasmatracy and we are left with nothing but its traces. We do figure out our ways of assembling these traces into stories that animate our own stories of life. This can be amplified by inventive heuretics.  We have this gift and are already at work. We have to become conscious of the same to be able to resist mind manipulations and the theft of our freedoms that are  employed for both commerce and politics these days.  

Conscious we must be  because we love experimenting, looking for novel experiences. This desire to experiment to experience the novel on the web is haunted. It is haunted by its dissatisfaction/ failure as well by the danger of those that might use it as baits to trap and manipulate us to  ride  the flow of  worlds of electracy towards their purposes and goals.  There is treat to our freedom as much there is an expansion of the space for freedom on the net.  As cybernauts, we have to take responsibility for our flight and surfing in the cyberspace and choose emancipating freedoms that set us as well as others free.   In the days of orality, humanity was parroting what its gets outside itself. It was hey time of mimesis. This made us largely a herd.   In the days of literacy, humanity became individualized and found its own voice. In our times of electracy, humanity is dividualized and disperses and disseminating its traces everywhere on the internet. It time that the cybernaut in us stands up and takes note.


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Hypocrisy is the tribute that vice pays to virtue.

- Fr Victor Ferrao