With a name like Norbert Wiener I couldn’t not make a meme out of him.
Mr. Wiener, without him we wouldn’t be able to understand cybernetics and the notion of global coordination and control as we do today. So, this week’s meme pays homage to his work and all things cybernetics through a parody of the ‘Sausage Party’ poster, ironically using the word ‘party’ to express the state of panic I’m in after becoming self-aware about my lack of online privacy.
Consider the nature of cybernetics – the “science of communications and automatic control systems”. Who (or what) exactly ‘controls’ our online communications?
The best way to approach this notion is through the framework of the network paradigms (topologies) that govern the sites we interact with.
For example, social media platforms such as Facebook could easily be mistaken for using distributed topologies; however, it must be considered that all communications through Facebook do exactly that: they go through Facebook. Therefore, it can be assumed that they use something which more resembles a centralised network.
So, the control that “nodes” (or users) believe they hold over their communications may be jeopardised by hidden or simply misunderstood systems. A concept which, becomes worrying in the wake of the recent CIA Vault 7 leaks – are the uncovered surveillance techniques a form of covert centralisation?