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Issue 4.2

Matter(s)

The primordial analog world. The novel digital world. Two canonical poles in a quintessential dualism. Like the Cartesian body-mind schism, however, the digital-analog divide is a false dichotomy, an exaggerated classifying and calcifying of human existence. David Sax argues that the “real world isn’t black or white. It is not even gray. Reality is multicolored, infinitely textured, and emotionally layered…The best ideas emerge from that complexity, which remains beyond the capability of digital technology to fully appreciate. The real world matters, now more than ever.” On the other hand, adopting Edward Fredkin’s understanding of the digital, humans have never lived in a non-digital world; instead, all matter, at its essence, is digital—that is, matter composed of microscopic representations of binary state information. Perhaps the dichotomy no longer holds any value, as the authors of “The Birth of Digital” argue…

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