Cityscapes: the Hardware of Cultural Supercomputers

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Throughout adolescence I have seen cityscapes as both interesting and beautiful. I am fascinated by the towering structures reaching for the sky and the lights illuminating them at night. When I see the reflection of city lights on water I am intrigued.

Travel, Fascination, and Wonder

I’ve spent a lot of my life moving around and living in different regions of the United States. I’ve seen quite a few cities and the ones that stick with me the most are those that stimulate feelings of wonder and visual excitement. Pictures of cityscapes and urban scenes give me a similar feeling. Buildings like the Sydney Opera House, Oklahoma’s BOK center, and other modern looking and uniquely designed buildings are visually exciting to me. That’s  because they invoke a sense of futuristic appeal which I reflect in my artwork again and again.

BOK Center in Tulsa, Oklahoma

I’m not sure exactly where this fascination came from, but as a younger child I remember enjoying a vivid imagination. That imagination is still mostly intact today, and I use it in my artwork. This imagination has also allowed me to see cities, in a sense, as centers of conglomerating, connected, and communicating information.

The Way I See Cityscapes, Roads, and Commuters

I see cityscapes sort of like motherboards within a computer. Each is a nexus of vast amounts of information that people are delivering back and forth as they commute. I see this as a sort of exchange of information, like electronic particles within a computer transferring information. This exchange and synthesis of information appears to happen in cities as well as computers.

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In this way, I also see the roads and sidewalks people use as electronic wires. I suppose that would make airplanes the metaphorical equivalent of WiFi.

Centers of Interraction

Some cities never sleep. Day and night people are commuting to their jobs, home, school and more to take part in this nexus of information in some way.

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Maybe they are going to have a conference where business information is exchanged, maybe they will exchange emotional information by meeting a friend downtown, or maybe they’re exchanging intellectually innovative information with a coworker.

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While in the city, commuters regularly receive and process information as people would in any culture, however; commuters can take the information with them and spread it from city to city, from city to suburban, and vice versa and so on. Each major city is like the motherboard of a computer and the suburbs and surrouding areas are like smaller parts of the computer.

Similarly, networks of computers and the information they process never sleep. All day and night the internet is being used by people going to and fro.

Cultural Hardware

It appears the perpetual and highly connected nature of society follows a model of communication and innovation similar to a machine Integrated within a network of intelligence. What this implies for humanity and its relationship with technology, I would guess, is a continuing trend for humans to make themselves more like machines and for humans to make machines more like themselves.
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