Technology & Architecture

Techno-Architecture and Online Loneliness by Javier Echeverría, Atxu Amann y Alcocer, Flavio Martella and Lola S. Almendros

The information revolution of the late 20th century has modified social existence in space and time, transforming our relationship with the city and our nearest environments, including dwellings, offices and spaces of entertainment. The traditional boundaries of internal/external, public/private, man/woman and work/leisure dualities are becoming less clear and tend to disappear within a reality that is simultaneously material and informational.

This also affects the generation of data, information and knowledge, in a process of continuous work in progress, or knowledge in ‘permanent beta’, as José Pérez de Lama calls it. Our time is characterized by the emergence of new desires and capabilities based on new relationships and agencies between machines and people. That is why today we can talk about techno-persons, and even techno-animals and techno-vegetables. In fact, the techno-body hybridization affects not only human beings, as Donna Haraway already argued when talking about cyborgs, but every living being in general. Today we can distinguish between life and life on-line (on-life or techno-life), understanding the latter as a set of processes and technological, informational and digital interrelations between diverse entities. These processes are developed in the third environment, that is, in a new techno-social space-time superimposed on the biosphere (first environment) and on cities (second environment). These new relationships provide some solutions to loneliness in cities, but they also generate new forms of loneliness that affect especially those without access to these informational worlds or, having access, without awareness of who they are while there.

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