What area is left for the big tech giants? These behemoths of our age want one thing: data. Data is the blood these vampires feed on. Facebook gathers all our lives. Remember when they urged people to add “life events” that took place even before Facebook existed? Facebook tickled our narcissism and we played right into it. Facebook is dying and will go extinct sooner than later, but that is another story. For now we ask, what is there left for the Silicon Vampires to extract from us? Apple has our finger prints, our retina and full scans. Hell, they have more than most governments. They all know what we watch, read, more than we might know ourselves. The one thing they do not yet have access to, though, is the human brain. And this is what they will go after next. How, you ask? By promising you immortality
Google has been funding what Ray Kurzweil’s fantasies of transhumanism, of digital immortality in the cloud for several years now and there is a reason that they do. First, people in Silicon Valley, referred to as vampires here for a reason, really want to live forever and are looking for means to do so. There are structural and epochal reasons for this rather than psychological ones. Technology itself is but the process by which a fully available presence keeps on continuing and expanding itself, consuming everything in its way. Their universe is the universe of Leibniz, where there is nothing that is dead, as Leibniz tells us in his Monadolody. In their universe we are not humans belonging to a history, to a language, finite and fragile beings. In their universe we are monads, isolated from others, ever full of appetite, driven only by our appetite to perceive, to see more, to see everything. Hence Silicon Vampires do not wish to die. They are victims of this process, of this explosion of abstract presence that we call modernity. And hence they do not want you to die because they feed on you.
In another timeline, which has long passed, a corporation like Google would not finance the hocus-pocus of Kurzweil. But Google does, because he offers one of the best solutions to their problem: how can we guarantee that our users – who will die! – do not die! Think about it: Google is not that old a company. Most of its users have grown with it. So Google has invested billions in us. When we die, on a massive scale, all of that data is worthless. Prolonging the use of that data, maybe even into infinity in the realms of artificial time in the virtual world, is what they crave. But to map your data, to make it available to the cloud, the depths of brain waves and neurons must be mapped.
This is why Google will develop a brain chip and will have it implanted in people’s brains. To map brains and minds and store the data in their timeless doom loops where that data is supposed to create more exploitable data. That is the only reason. Kurzweil’s fantasising about being yourself in the cloud and getting to choose to be somebody else in any given moment, like changing your physical appearance, is the bait. Will you take it?