Monday, November 12, 2007

Infosphere is a neologism coined by Luciano Floridi, on the basis of biosphere, a term referring to that limited region on our planet that supports life. The infosphere denotes the whole informational environment constituted by all informational entities (thus including informational agents as well), their properties, interactions, processes and mutual relations. It is an environment comparable to, but different from cyberspace (which is only one of its sub-regions, as it were), since it also includes off-line and analogue spaces of information. According to Floridi, it is possible to equate the Infosphere to the totality of Being. This equation leads to an informational ontology.
According to Floridi, in the close future there will be "a reconceptualization of our ontology in informational terms. It will become normal to consider the world as part of the infosphere, not so much in the dystopian sense expressed by a Matrix-like scenario, where the "real reality" is still as hard as the metal of the machines that inhabit it; but in the evolutionary, hybrid sense represented by an environment such as New Port City, the fictional, post-cybernetic metropolis of Ghost in the Shell. The infosphere will not be a virtual environment supported by a genuinely 'material' world behind; rather, it will be the world itself that will be increasingly interpreted and understood informationally, as part of the infosphere. At the end of this shift, the infosphere will have moved from being a way to refer to the space of information to being synonymous with Being. This is the sort of informational metaphysics I suspect we shall find increasingly easy to embrace."
Emerging from what French philosopher-priest Pierre Teilhard de Chardin called the shared noosphere of collective human thought, invention and spiritual seeking, the Infosphere is now a field that engulfs our physical, mental and etheric bodies; it affects our dreaming and our cultural life. Our evolving nervous system has been extended, as media sage Marshall McLuhan predicted in the early 1960s, into a global embrace.

1 comment:

Yale said...

I much enjoyed this post of yours.

And I hope I can now return the favor by pointing you to my admittedly rather eccentric which conjectures a model of cognition and re-cognition and re-re-... based on degrees of differentiating and levels of integration within a self-referencing frame of reference defined by a unit square monad.