Posted by: dystopiandaze | February 5, 2011

He thought, she thought

Communication Today (edited from NoHoldingBack.com)

One of the most fascinating ways that the technology present in Feed affects the daily lives of its users concerns communication. As I’ve already explained, nearly everyone in Titus’ world is connected to the feed and able to navigate through this vast source of information by simply thinking. While we have to use our hands to operate a mouse or our fingers to move across a touch-screen, Titus and his friends can think of an object and receive search results. However, the feed is capable of offering much more to its users than definitions or images; the feed also serves as a method of communication between any number of people connected to the feed. Much like instant messaging or texting, the feed allows people to “talk” to one another without words and Anderson calls it “chatting”. But this is where it gets tricky – when someone chats someone else over the feed it’s not like you are reading a text or listening to a voicemail. You are actually hearing what that person is thinking to you.

That difference may seem subtle; texting is nearly an instant form of communication and the flow of information seems to essential go directly from one mind to another, with only the mechanical writing of the text and the mechanical reading of the text in between. But without either mechanical action I argue that what Titus and his friends are experiencing in chatting on the feed is basically telepathy. In an effort to see whether anyone else might agree with me, I looked up the definition of telepathy with the following results:

communication between minds by some means other than sensory perception; knowledge conveyed from one individual to another without means of the five senses; mind reading

-Definition of “telepathy”, dictionary.com

Communication in Feed (edited from HerCafe.net)

Seems like telepathy to me, although a much more controlled form since I’m guessing that Titus has to specifically think and “send” his thoughts when chatting with a friend; as far as Anderson explained his friend probably could not delve into Titus’ mind, extracting whichever thoughts at will unless there were a serious glitch with feed security. Even barring this frightening idea that our thoughts could someday no longer be our own, this form of telepathy offers a crazy advance in that particularly popular form of communication: gossip. Throughout Feed many of the girls (okay, the guys sometimes too) fully take advantage of their ability to talk think about someone behind her (okay, sometimes his) back. Can you even imagine how complicated social situations could get with telepathy?

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