Wed 22 Feb 2012
We have come a long way since the launch of Bigmother in 2004. Started as a celebration of surveillance technology as a protest to the Bigbrother notion dominant as an automated response to every idea based upon tracking and monitoring. Today surveillance is not even considered problemeatic and the pathos of my early posts seem strange now. Most TV formats are based on some kind of surveillance (Bigbrother), assessment (X-Factor) or ‘documentation’ quality (docu-soaps), social media are filled with behavioral documentation (checking in, bought this, did that) and now apps for tracking sleep, health and fitness are exploding. Furthermore, monitoring might simply be the new philosophical paradigm for personal identity. A somewhat positivist turn following years of spirituality, mindfulness, and meditation. Wired made the argument in 2009 under the heading Know Thyself and saturday the Danish Newspaper Berlingske followed with an article headlined: I measure, therefore I am (in Danish).
Illustration: Nicolas Feltons famous visualizations of his personal life, published in his annual Feltron reports
Again all this just confirms ancient knowledge, that human self understanding is a perpetual interaction with the present technological possibilities. And I will continue to follow humans dance with surveillance technology and data. As an entrepreneur I can only welcome the tendency as our little company /KL7 makes a living by making data meaningful and monitoring a competitive advantage for organizations.
More on self-tracking
Discover Magazine on self-tracking
New York Times on self-tracking