Maybe it’s the magnetic allure of the screen or the enchantment of some half-forgotten ad. But either way, there is magic in the feedback loops by which we spin meaning together in the world. Today much of this magic is digital. This is the magic of cybernetic forms. While commonly imagined as a data-driven mode of communicative rationality, cybernetics also operates in a decidedly more occult manner. Of particular importance is cybernetics’ capacity to magically command attention through mesmerizing technologies of coded fascination and fear.
Nowadays the magician busies himself with public relations, propaganda, market research, sociological surveys, publicity, information, counterinformation and misinformation…. [S]cience has … substituted itself for a part of magic while extending its dream and its goals by means of technology. Electricity, rapid transport, radio and television, the airplane and computer have carried into effect the promises first formulated by magic … to produce light, move instantaneously from one point to another, to fly through the air, to have infallible memory at one’s disposal.
Via Momentary Flow