Random readings on society, politics and change – Jorge Carrillo
Rebecca Lemov – We live in what is sometimes called the ‘petabyte era’, and this pronouncement has provoked much discussion of the sheer size of data stores being created, as well as their rapid growth. What is often forgotten, or temporarily put aside, in such excited discussions is how much of this newly created stuff is made of and out of personal data, the almost literal mining of subjectivity. Most definitions of big data don’t take account of its inherent humanness, nor do they grapple meaningfully with its implications for the relationship between technology and changing ways of defining ourselves. What makes new collections of data different, and therefore significant, is their quality of being generated continuously from people’s mundane, scarcely thought-through, seemingly tiny actions. We need to see the human in the data machine.
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