The Rear View Mirror

Rear View Mirror Effect
I’m working on this picture for my talk at Intel representing what Marshall McLuhan and Edmund Carpenter call “the rear view mirror effect” – our tendency to view new technologies in the terms of the old. Here we are cruising on an information superhighway made up of digital information but we still tend to view it in the terms of our old technologies … so we have web-pages written with e-text stored in e-folders, etc. Why does digital information need to be stored in a “folder”? Why does it have to be in only one place at a time? Why does it have to “be” anywhere? We are only just beginning to understand the ways digital information can challenge our most fundamental assumptions of space and being.


Associate professor of cultural anthropology. Ed Traceur. Hacker. Car-free.

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2 Responses

  1. Adam says:

    Cool image. Is that matrix code?? =)

  2. Prof Wesch says:

    Yeah, I just took a still of the matrix code and then skewed and distorted it using “transform” in Photoshop to match the grain of the highway in the original picture.