Infosphere Future

Lifeblog points to an article by Luciano Floridi:

“Infosphere” is a word I coined years ago on the basis of “biosphere,” a term referring to that limited region on our planet that supports life. By “infosphere,” then, I mean the whole informational environment made up of all informational entities (including informational agents), their properties, interactions, processes, and relations. It is an environment comparable to, but different from, “cyberspace” (which is only one of the sub-regions of the infosphere, as it were), since the infosphere also includes offline and analog spaces of information. We shall see that it is also an environment (and hence a concept) that is rapidly evolving.

Nowadays, we are used to considering the space of information as something we log in to and log out from. Our view of the world is still modern or Newtonian: it is made of “dead” cars, buildings, furniture, clothes, which are non-interactive, irresponsive, and incapable of communicating, learning, or memorizing. But what we still experience as the world offline is bound to become a fully interactive and responsive environment of wireless, pervasive, distributed, a2a (anything to anything) information processes, that works a4a (anywhere for anytime), in real time. This interactive digital environment will first gently invite us to understand the world as something “a-live” (artificially live), i.e. as comprising agents capable of interacting with us in various ways (shoes, for example, used to be “dead” artifacts, but you can now interact with the pair of Nike shoes you are wearing through your iPod). Such animation of the world will, paradoxically, make our outlook closer to that of pre-technological cultures which interpreted all aspects of nature as inhabited by animating spirits.

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Rajesh Jain

An Entrepreneur based in Mumbai, India.