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Article by Andreea Hirica

Imagine being placed in a Creativity Accelerator chamber. Or in a marathon of ideas, throughout a whole day. Not only through one’s head, not even through a unified mind and conscience of 2000 attendants and over 20000 live stream viewers. But a marathon of ideas running through a collective creative body of beings at the leading edge of science, philosophy and art.

Bits, Atoms, Neurons and Genes: BANG
is the language code through which the 2012 edition of TEDxBrussels explored the alchemy of meaning and the original BANG of highly entropic worlds.

Is Technology for the first time in Human History ahead of Psychology, Sociology and even Economics?

Humanity is reaching a stage in which we act like “computers downloading raw data to one another”. As if Technology might have gotten a bit ahead of Psychology, Sociology and even Economics. Or, as FrenchWeb puts it: “we have the Technological capabilities in place and well advanced, but we need the Economical models to catch up and best value it”. We might as well say that we have the fascinating technological capability of generating “digital vertigos” (Andrew Keen) and what we need to focus next, is practice the art of generating meaning and furthermore, harmony, out of it. To make the shift from the Age of Information, to the Age of Wisdom ().

Mystery and its place in the New World(s).

“Who do we ask questions when we have one, now? Not a person! Starts with “GO” and it’s not God” (Steve Wozniak talking about "Technology and Social Revolution").

According to Andrew Keen, father of the digital vertigo, concept inspired to him by Alfred Hitchcock’s movie “Vertigo”, we have already reached a next level in our human journey: we are now living on the Internet, with no difference between our public and our private lives. Such a highly chattery, “My life is my life” environment in which we are continuously expected to feed the “network” with raw data, is threatening us with losing our most important human characterisitc, he argues: our Inner World. That place of quietness and Mystery; our Self Detached and Self Isolated inner dark room where Creativity and Impeccability are being crystalized.

Could this over-exposure also give us the punch into living more authentically and more freely, by embracing each of our unique misfittingness like Dale Stephens invites us to? Could it force us to go deeper into the “dark rooms” as we would not have normally gone, had it not been for the assault of living on the Internet?

Being in touch with the Unknown. Ignorance playing its part in making meaning out of entropy.

“When I go to a scientific conference and at the end of the day, retire in a bar with my colleagues, we never talk about what we know. We always talk about what we don’t know.” Dr. Stuart Firestein

“Knowledge is a big subject, but Ignorance is even a more important one; and more interesting for us to think about” argues Dr. Firestein We need to teach student about what remains to be done. About the critical unknowns and what we think we would we be able to do and perceive if we knew them.

“Science derives from a source that is not accessible to science” (…) “Reality is not a data bank. Nor can it be reduced to a finite set of laws or to a deductive axiomatic system. The sources of Creativity are by definition unknown; inevitably outside the present conceptual universe. The Unknown is the matrix out of which Creativity is born. Just as the brain renders invisible the psychological “blind spot” and gives the illusion that the visual field is continuous and complete, so the mythology of science has the function of hiding from view the wholes in the field of consciousness and rationality”. (William Byers)

Like ripples on a lake, as the circle of knowledge increases, so does the circumference; that part that is in touch with the unknown. As knowledge grows, so does Ignorance” (Dr. Firestein explains). “Thoroughly conscious ignorance is the prelude to every real advance in science” (James Clerk Maxwell quoted by Dr. Firestein). The kind of Ignorance that has more to do with asking the right questions than with getting the right answers. We may commonly think that we start with ignorance in order to gain knowledge. This is what Dr. Firestein calls “the accumulation model of knowledge”. Yet the more critical step in the process, he reminds, is the reverse: we start from what we know to gain better thoroughly conscious ignorance and frame better questions. It is indeed difficult to work with ignorance. But same as with entropy and chaos, allowing ourselves to learn how to is becoming crucial.

Are we Scientifically Discovering, Artistically Creating Meaning, or Both?

“We are all Designers” (Yasaman Sheri) "We are all Reporters" (Xavier Damman) "We are all Creatives" (Peter Jansen) "We are all Artists" (Seth Godin ).

How could we “ignorantly” explore what needs to be done when exposed to the digital vertigo? Could this inspire us in framing better questions and reaching deeper meaning? If not with the “foolish objective” of unveiling the mystery and crushing "world's corolla of wonders" (Lucian Blaga, 1991), then for the sake of expanding into a higher, "throughly conscious ignorange"? The more technology and digital vertigo kill mystery, are we still capable as a specie, to attain the inciting, intimate secrecy depicted by L’Homme et la Mer (Charles Baudelaire, 1857)?

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