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The Quantifiable Everything

1 February 2015

Berlin, Germany

Stop pretending that bits don’t decay. Or that the virtual lacks any real-world consequences. The Internet of Things is at hand. Things that are Internet. Internet that is things. It’s gonna settle that argument once and for all.” Bruce Sterling at the transmediale 2014 afterglow opening ceremony.

When every thing and its potential relation to every other thing is assigned a number, physical reality becomes addressable and open to new economic and social interactions. This roundtable’s panel asked if tech developers, hackers and artists can respond in both critical and constructive ways to the challenges of the quantification of every-thing in ways that reach beyond the banal visions of the self-ordering fridge and the city as a digitally assisted playground. In a future hyper-connected society with semi-autonomous objects, what are the socio-cultural challenges and opportunities of the drive towards interconnected material and immaterial structures, through “Smart” technologies, innovation, maker and app driven economies? 

Organised through the S+T+ARTS initiative and with moderation by Peter Friess, the roundtable gathered Bruce Sterling, Luis Miguel Girao, Frank Rieger and David Cuartielles in the House of World Cultures.

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