There is an arc
It can be noticed sometimes
At the peripheral
Of our lives
It is created by our tastes and tendencies
It is unconscious choice for the most part
We breathe on, unaware of its encompassing, channeling affect on the direction of our lives
It is the playlist we listen to
The foods we eat
Whether we choose to exercise and how that experience is
It is whether we drink alcohol, how much or not at all
So many things we choose seemingly at random
Are not random at all
And they become our habits
Create our earthly pall
Flickering at the edges
We blame fate
It is our tastes and tendencies that led us
To this point, another
If you want to know a result
Cast some Gypsy spell
Looking far off and ahead
Who you will become
It’s already being written in your head
So start there.
*my playlist this morning was chosen by Siri.
My watch, my phone, these sentinels to my life. They know what I like to eat and wear via google, what I listen to via habit, they predict, they discern and they grow more knowing by the day.
More knowing about me then me it would seem at times
The playlist Siri chose and the order which the songs were played blew me away.
I had Beethoven followed by Uptown Funk followed by James Taylor followed by Taylor Swift followed by some gorgeous musical composition that I cannot even remember downloading followed by Rhianna and Eminem, then Pink and some John Butler trio and others that I cannot recall but were perfect wherever they fell.
Many of the tracks were several years old – songs I hadn’t listened to in years – how did she know I needed to hear them
And she isn’t even a she
She is an it
Yet over time she has become she, with her never flustered female voice that has talked me calmly through fraught moments in traffic
I’ve always said google probably thinks I am actually ten people – I would have thought Siri thought so too but she gets me.
Which is what she is designed to do
One day psychologists will ask our watch what the problem is
Or perhaps we will
And there won’t be a need for psychologists anymore
Won’t be a need for anyone anymore
13 thoughts on “The fence that keeps us penned”
Very eloquent Kate. Artificial Intelligence, our best friend, who knows what the future holds.
Who knows indeed Len, I never would have thought of what we have now let alone where we are going in the future.
Hmm, a bit scary. As one who wants to get rid of google and technology, I hope it doesn’t replace humans. 🙂 Brave New World, I guess. 🙂
I love technology and gadgets – within reason. Like anything they have the power to be used wisely and well with great advantages for humans – then there is the downside … interesting times.
I like to keep myself a mystery to Siri as I don’t use her. No instagram, tweeter, Reddit, tiki tiki 😂 no playlists, I use YouTube but never save anything, I keep google guessing as we never travel in the same circles. 😅
I don’t leave Siri “on” but I use her in maps etc when I travel, I use her to skip a track when I’m running that sort of thing – I have all the crap, Instagram etc – I did read a really good book by Jared Lanier – 10 arguments for deleting all social media and it was convincing – that was a couple of years ago though and unfortunately since then I have started using more social media as I live fairly remotely and it gives me more reach and enjoyment to chat to and connect with so many other people from around the world. But I’m aware at the same time there is a cost, and it is paid every time I give away another piece of information.
Kate, if you haven’t already done so, I recommend that you read Edward Snowden’s 2019 memoir “Permanent Record” about our digital age.
I haven’t and thanks I will.
I’m a gadgets-n-tech person too, but I draw the line at my ‘decisions’ being made for me by … not the actual gadget or piece of tech … but the coder who wrote the program that runs them, and the corporation that stands behind her/him.
I think the playlist is created by how many times I’ve played the tune so in the gadget itself and yes heartily agree – not keen on the other scenario though
Beautifully written! <:
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