Augmentology" a concise manual of reality for our digital age."

Mark Hancock,_Augmentology: Interfaccia Tra Due Mondi_

[Sponsored by The Ars Virtua Foundation/CADRE Laboratory for New Media]

In _Social Tesseracting_: Part 1, we learnt that:

1. Dimensionality defines working concepts of reality.
2. Theoretically, dimensionality can also expand to define a spectrum of nascent social actions.
3. These particular social actions encompass communication trends defined by synthetic interactions.
4. Synthetic interactions create social froth that can be produced geophysically or geolocatively. Both connection types depend on relevant electronic gesturing:

5. This mix of synthetic interactions and electronic gesturing provokes a descriptive framework of this aggregated sodality. This framework is termed Social Tesseracting.
6. In order to adequately formulate Social Tesseracting, contemporary theorists need to extend “valid” reality definitions based currently on the endpoint of the geophysical.

In assessing the growing ethological importance of Social Tesseracting, the following markers demand examination:

a) Social White-Space: Just as with the convention of white space in graphic design, social tesseracts manifest in habituated actions performed routinely over a substantiated period [think: responding to smartphone emails during geophysical-based discourse]:

Social white space exists in synthetically mediated consciousness via overlaying reality clusters. These clusters may exist outside of the geoloaded end of the Reality-Virtuality Continuum [ie the locatable "real person"]. Conjunctive or intermediary areas of connectivity mediate this “primary” reality state [think: Information Shadowing, the Network Effect and Warnock's Dilemma]. Social white-space is currently effecting educative goals and is altering engagement within the workplace.

b)  Immediation: the instantaneous modification of remote events via the removal of geo-specific time lag. Immediation highlights the impact potential of synthetic connectors. Examples of Immediation in action:

c) Regenerative Comprehension: indicated by rapid shifts in the nature of content creation and absorption. A primary example is Twitter’s chronologically-reversed tweet reading order acting to modify awareness. Other examples include:

d) Process Centering: Social Tesseractions are marked by fluid, process-oriented engagement rather than rigid procedural structuring. Process centering prompts a re-evaluation of data formation and alters the entrenched importance of institutionalised categorisations. An emergent example of process centering is Google Wave. Google Wave uses an algorithmic variation of “operational transformations” [live concurrent editing] which occur through a process called transformation:

  • The server transforms the client’s request, resulting in the client manifesting the same transformed output.
  • The notion of concurrency is invariably important as it mimics geophysical conversational states.
  • Utilizing the server as a point of relay [when more than one client's output is involved] assists in providing scalability and reliability.
  • The playback feature allows the server to present the document as a stream of operations that have occurred thus far in a particular wave/state.

Transformation relies on continual modification via process centering. This accent on process acts to rewire the notion of documents as statically defined “objects” and [by proxy] any information contained within. This has enormous implications in regards to such institutionally-governed categories such as literacy, media, the professional/amateur divide, narrative, and information construction.

_Social Tesseracting_: Part 3 will expand on these indicators through examining: Information Deformation, Attribution Modding, and the Decline of Silo Ghettos.

8 Comments to “_Social Tesseracting_: Part 2”

  1. - This is fascinating – it’s something that Jon Marhsall wrote on in the Cybermind book, calling it ‘ascence.’ – referencing Warnock’s Dilemma above. Marshall studied the Cybermind email list for a decade or so and published his research – in Living on Cybermind. – all relating to the liminal and problematic status of personhood and presence online (not to mention the resulting epistemological problems) -

    - Alan

  2. Thaiis Thei says:

    I agree totally that the nature of social exchange is changing, more multitasking and multilayered personas. I especially see this in my research in SL. It’s Goffman gone mad (I mean that in the nicest possible way). Multiple personas, disassociation of online personas from the meatspace persona(s), experimental personalities, gender exploration etc. etc. Where is it going? A place that will look very strange to the us that is now. A place where ‘real’ is in the eye of the beholder. A lot of people will get scared by it and try to impose ‘real world’ verities on it, mostly because of their hang ups about what it means to be responsible for one’s self. It will probably split society in a new and different way to the previous splits as the meatspace only people don’t understand the jargonistic way of relating that you describe as social tesseracting. Personally I am hoping for the burbclave society of Neal Stephenson. The question there would be whether personas can be in different burbclaves or whether the meatspace self will remain the definition of the self.

  3. I really like the way you are framing your thoughts and the examples you are providing are great!

    I would be interested to know your thoughts of my use of the term Tesseracting (as a replacement for the word editing) to describe the manipulation of hypercubes in digital media. I have my own Hypercubist theory of digital narrative called Quantinuity. You can read about it here on my blog Quantum Cinema — “Quantinuity: Towards a Theory of Continuity for Hypercubist Cinema” —

    Greetings from Berlin!

  4. mez says:

    hiya gabriel,

    thanks for ur feedback + excellent 2 find like-minded synths working synchronously!

    i’m just reading through ur ideas on _Quantinuity_ now. there’s significant overlap between the idea of Social_Tesseracting and ur propositions regarding _Quantinuity_. i do c our approaches differing in how this type of extended synthetic interaction + data formation/formulation occur[s]. 4 instance, ur emphasis on:
    “Quantinuity (quantum + continuity) is a theory which attempts to create grammar of a particlized cinema”
    ie a modification of the micro_message_unit that allows cinema 2 expand tesseractically in2 “the new spacetime of hypercubist cinema” illustrates a pinpointing thru a method of artistic/entertainment focus [cinema] whereby my use points 2wards an entirely new system of inter/action + the gritty building-block mechanics? Social_Tesseracting doesn’t exclusively elaborate on standard methods of cultural production [such as cinema] – no matter how meta-modified – but rather examines + [synthetically] maps an emergent + gradual dissolving of categories such as “culture”/”information”/”documents” + corresponding sociosynthetic impacts?

    whereas u end ur _Quantinuity_ treatise with:
    “These are just a few examples of a rapidly increasing trend of hypercubist cinema to incorporate social networks which accelerate the implosion of the entire celluloid film making apparatus, from writing through production all the way to distribution and merchandising.”…this is where – IMO – Social_Tesseracting begins?


  5. Hey Mez!

    Its exactly the points of intersection and means by which social tesseracting lifts cinematic experience out of the realm of traditionally cinematic environs and into the everyday that got me so excited about your ideas! After reading your entry and reflecting, it would compel me to write a follow up at some point which reframes this continuum into the social mediascape beyond cinema. Of course cinema as a term is nice because it means “movement” which is generally speaking a reasonably malleable concept to bring into the 21st century :)

    The Quantinuity piece is admittedly proposed as some sort of formal system for navigating and constructing transmedia storyworlds; I do indeed have a specific interest/focus on cinema in my theoretical writing.

    However, Hypercubism is proposed as more of a definition of the era we are in as a whole and would be poised to encompass the social-tesseracting that you have so elegantly articulated :)

    My most recent thoughts on Hypercubism have been geared towards seeing it as a quickly passing evolutionary era that in all of its cloud-like ephemerality will give way to a more seamless future mediascape. We could potentially call this next phase Holographic, as I think it will signify the total merging of reality and its augmentations. Whether this is 5 or 20 years off is not clear, however I expect some cosmopolitan places on Earth will reach this state sooner than later.

    Could you elaborate on what you mean by the term “synths” as you used it in the opening sentence of your reply? — I was just the other day having a discussion with a friend in London about terminology and we very nearly came to outlining a description for a “synthetic conductor” as someone who facilitates and encourages transmedia collaboration — perhaps in earlier times called a “creative producer” or something similarly vague :)

    I really like the term synthesis in the way that it points to the essentially transformational and constructive nature of the hypercubist era (as opposed to a postmodernist critical stance which is analytical and breaks things into pieces) but at the same time I wish there was a word that didn’t have the connotations of artificiality that synthetic has (any ideas?) so as to be more warmly regarded by people not as technology-friendly. Speaking of which, have you heard of these “next nature” guys in Amsterdam? They’re pretty far out!

    Let’s keep the dialogue going!

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