Apparently, I wasn’t quite done with this thought process on wearable technology and how it applies to cyborg. What I found unique about this approach were the accessories, that essentially there are secondary markets (and thus economic incentives) focused on melding technology to human. It might have started with a nose guard on eyeglasses, but it has now morphed into a fashion accessory. There is always prestige value to the technology, certainly, but now there is prestige value in mapping this technology to the human.
I suspect this is the natural evolution of the heady cocktail of
- convenience- this desire to simplify processes and eliminate efficiencies (why carry it if you can wear it?)
- mobility- the Internet really accelerated this trend towards portability; first in terms of data, and now in terms of technology (as conveyors of that data). From desktop to laptop to mobile to earbuds to finger taps as input devices, all of this represents if not a progression than certainly a shift.
Besides this process of cyborgization (why not?) I see occurring here, a process born now not always out of necessity (as in the prosthetic limb or eyeglasses) but by choice (tech as fashion), the big question that arises in my mind, one that I have been laboring over quite a bit is whether we will take the next “efficient” step and make these mappings permanent.
I am thinking more along the lines of tattoos than bulky apparatus or prosthetics, but will we map ourselves with technology both for necessity and as a declaration of identity? Code indicating class, prestige? QR codes for the skin? I suspect some will, most certainly, but many will also opt, as I do, for a temporary union of human and technology. One based on need, utility, assembled quickly and disassembled with the same alacrity.
Either way, the engine of social status has been attached to the power of technology and that is one powerful boost. The minute they started mentioning hipster with this was the signal that the race is on.