Katherine Hayles has defined “being posthuman” as having no essential difference between bodily simulation and computer simulation.  This would seem to explain how we have evolved beyond our human capabilities; but we exist as a collection of components constantly reinventing itself. (p.3)

As systematic organisms, we see the world “out there” that exists apart from us; the environment triggers changes determined by the system’s structural properties. (p. 11)

It is an interesting focus on the discussions between Margaret Mead, Gregory Bateson, and Stewart Brand and their take on cybernetics. Hayles should have included however a small drawing of the sketches Bateson made explaining the position of the observer in the diagram.

The Constellations chart following (p.15) was most helpful in explaining how the ideas of cybernetics have evolved, each changing in response to “old and new” overlapping innovation and application.

It is so important that she spoke of narrative as essential to explaining the evolution of posthumanism, especially the personalities involved and the negotiations as the theories evolved.  As Hayles states (p.24), literature and science together are a way of understanding ourselves as “embodied creatures” living within and through embodied worlds and through embodied words.  As a reference point for human and posthuman (p.34), the computation exists rather than the possessive individualism is taken as the ground of being; the posthuman is seemingly articulated as intelligent machines.

David Harvey has postulated that in late capitalism, durable goods lead to pride of place to information (p.39) The difference is the access which differs from possession because the former tracks patterns rather than the presence (pattern recognition). So prescient, Frederic Jameson’s comment about the information society being the purest form of capitalism; the market then determines the state of the goods. However, how interesting that the “junk merchant” degrades and simplifies the client. (p.42) That is us in our posthuman state?

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