SIGINT09 - final8

22. - 24. Mai, Köln

Paranoid Machines

Jason Brown

Contrary to post-human mythologies of escape, we cannot flee into the purity of information and code, because the messy conspiratorial logic of sex-dirt is in fact the paranoid logic of code itself. From the supernatural mass murder which inspired the Arts of Memory to the atomic alien conspiracies which spawned the Web, information technology has always been paranoid. Long before before porn and spam turned obfuscation into a business model, the pure orderly logic of code was already infested with bugs of the meat.

This talk covers several thousand years of information technology and its corresponding mythologies, following threads of symptom and haunting woven throughout the history of mnemotechnics. How does ancient gnostic cosmology influence the way we use computers? How did magicians, junkies and sexual deviants give us computers, programming and rocket science? How did a cave in Kentucky became the blueprint of cyberspace? How did a moth presage y2k and terrorist paranoia? How is the crashed flying saucer at Roswell tied to the origins of hypertext?

Much of this will be examined through the gnostic allegory of the 1983 Dinsey movie, Tron.


jason dot brown at superbunker dot com

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