That, Mr. Anderson, is the Sound of Inevitability

In the Rusty News-Dissection Pan:

- Sex Offenders don't get to use MySpace anymore
- Neither do Military Personnel
- Gonzales and Wolfowitz might loses their jobs, Week Five: And lo, the spectators resorted to cannibalism is search of sustenance
- Jerry Falwell's corpse has not yet zombified

But what I really want to discuss today is this:


Yes! This is very important. I'm not being sarcastic. This will be a major issue once the cyborg revolution takes place and we are all welded to computers and peripherals.

There are many reactionary forces out there who fear the coming revolution, and I have nothing to say to them, except that the Luddites lost and its time to get with the program, literally. Information is the major motive force in most of the world, and we will need tools to manipulate that data effectively. So, the question is, how can you best work your data? Would you like to continue to use your keyboard, allowing your joints to corrode and fail, or would you like to evolve and make yourself some better organs? I'm sure your new synthesis appendages will even come in designer colors, so don't fret.

But the problem becomes this: of course those of us ready to "get the net" will open our minds and our bodies to the possibilities that cyborg lifestyles will provide, but how do we foresee the side-effects of this creative mutation? There are likely to be prototypes that fail, and while throwing out your stupid Razr is not a big deal, I'm rather attached to my liver. How do I make sure my cyber-liver will be just as soft and pliable as my current guy? By looking ahead, and foreseeing solutions in advance.

And so we come to our savvy "scientists". Good old scientists, out there doing science stuff 9 hours a day, 5 days a week. They are dealing with the world of hard facts, and therefore aren't tempted by idealistic visions of a "Matrix" where World of Warcraft takes the place of dating, and we can be pure energy beings with no need for bodies.

The obvious question, and the one that these Scientists are engaging, is: as activity becomes centered in information rather than the physical world, what will happen to the health of our bodies?

While our brains are growing bigger and we are less reliant on our physical abilities for survival, we're still going to be stuck with bodies for some time yet. And I wouldn't have it any other way! That is the essence of cyborgness; it is a marriage of man and machine, not a permanent out-of-body existence. We should improve our bodies through modification, not let them fall apart through dis- or misuse. After all, the somatic organs are crucial to mind function. Mind/body dualism, which often goes hand-in-hand (or rather, not...) with humanism and secularism, let alone religionism, allows people to think if you improve your mind you can let the body fall by the wayside. Body consciousness is crucial to mental health, I'm happy to say. And let's not forget the bodily joys of life. The mind may be "the biggest erogenous zone", but it would be pretty hard to enjoy it without that body!

So how, if we are plugged in, do we keep from clogging our brains with cholesterol? Easy enough, just don't stand still. Especially now that we are quickly moving wireless, why sit at a desk? While not stand, or, as Science tells us, run? Who says you have to be sitting down to be productive? From now on I'm only going to send email while running at full speed. Perfect! Another old habit broken, another victory for the cyborg revolution.

There are other pro/con situations that can be foreseen about the cyborg revolution. Here are some, with possible solutions, as I see it. And I don't even have the benefits of science at my disposal!

After the Glorious Cyborg Revolution...

Problem: We have compatibility problems integrating different systems now. What about when the systems are people?

Ingenious Solution: Well, if Fascists initiate the revolution, everyone who is not compatible... well, you know what will happen. But if Anarchists initiate it, (fingers crossed!!!) then everyone will be open source and you will have to reverse-engineer other people as you meet them. This is not necessarily bad, because sometimes its hard enough to understand what the hell other people are talking about, and they don't have access panels or source-code to examine. At least not in a polite fashion.

Problem: Computers crash a lot. What happens if your bionic eyes crash while driving, or worse yet, while watching the season-finale of America's Next Top Body-Hack?

Ingenious Solution: Easy. Just add more technology to fix the problem. To avoid missing your programs, install a Tivo in your mind. If you are driving and all of a sudden you can't see, pull over to the side of the road, and watch TV.

Problem: Computers become obsolete every few years. Will this mean that humans will age faster rather than slower as cyborgs?

Ingenious Solution: Well, if my iPod is any indication, your hyper-kidneys will only be designed to last one month past the end of the warranty. So, you'll be buying new kidneys anyway, with new video screens and better click wheels, so they really won't have the chance to age that much. You will be forced to get a brand new iKidney, or you'll die. You'll really be getting younger every year. And trendier.

Problem: If experiences are immediately available on YouTube, instead of just videos, won't this mean that the collective unconscious will become a reality, or even that our species will develop a "hive-mind", erasing the possibility of individual lives and creating a massive, homogeneous, non-personality, and what's worse, the content of this culture-ego will be no better and probably even more abysmal than the below-average of bottom-feeding brain-stem-titillation of reality programming that is now available?

Ingenious Solution: Yes.

Problem: What if bodily function jokes become riddled with nerd jargon?

Ingenious Solution: Don't worry. Pooping will still be hilarious.

Problem: What if the government uses the Patriot Act to hack my BRAIN?!?!?!

Ingenious Solution: We rewire the school fire alarms, break into the traffic light system, rollerblade down Park Avenue, through Grand Central Station, mobilize our global network of hip 20-somethings to crash the Man's networks with a billion little cute worm animations, Hack the F***ing Planet, and then make out with Angelina Jolie in a swimming pool.

Done and done.

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