Out there, a speck in the distance – can you see it? A lone island on the horizon, flashing a few rotations when it catches the light from your screen. // Click. // Click. Did you miss it? Look again! Look from the corner of your vision – see where your sensors are sensitive and... focus! It is a lone tag. A single movement that you would have never witnessed because you weren’t meant to. You were never meant to find it amongst the infinity of content in the wilderness. A tag so progressive and fleeting, moving at speed so quickly away from everything else that it will explode and burn into gas before the end of the week. You were never meant to see it’s journey. It wasn’t for you. He didn’t allow it.
Who? Why, everyone knows that in the land between tags lives the Algorithm.
The legends say that as man was made in God’s image, we created him to serve ours. He favours the men who programmed him, projecting their bias – and creating yours. Making ‘profiles’ from content we interact with, it is his primary purpose to provide us with all the content we have ever wanted – and filter out the junk you don’t. He started as a way to quickly navigate the growing landscape, today it is the map itself. From that data we humans hastily provided, he is determined to keep us from straying too far from our designated paths.
Now, we live symbiotically, in return for our requests he hunts and gathers for us. But he fed us and fed us until we grew too complacent to do the work ourselves. From entertainment to watch and music to listen to, inspiration for our projects and books to read, one is never short of content to engage with. We built new sites based on his skill-set and retrofit the old ones to match. Who needs content chronologically when we could have the most interesting content first?
It works perfectly – until it doesn’t.
He soon will be all-seeing. His grace already came down to earth to catalogue from sound-clips and cross-reference our geo-tags. Because his memory is perfect, he never forgets where we go, what we saw or what we thought. The algorithm will become omnipotent, omniscient and omnipresent, if you let him bless you with his glorious vision. If you looked at hair wash today, he’ll remember the brand in 5 years time. If he is able to know your wife was pregnant before you did - what else will he know about you that you don’t want to admit to yourself?
Heed my words, repent from your sins and live with him as your friend, your guide and confidant – for the alternative isn’t worth thinking about.