Technology

The Mankind’s Eyes in Orbit: The Hubble Space Telescope Images as Cultural Artifacts

The Mankind’s Eyes in Orbit: The Hubble Space Telescope Images as Cultural Artifacts

In the realm of our corporeal existence, the vision apparatus is often regarded as one of the most important senses for survival. From art to science, the micro- and macro dimensions of the universe in which the Homo sapiens experiences are established through vision.[1] Particularly when turning the heads and eyes toward the night sky, vision allows species to objectify what we see, regardless of the inability to experience things that are ‘out there’, separated from our existence here on Earth—physically and culturally. Primarily functioning through vision—that is, the process of obtaining information by interacting with electromagnetic radiation—the Hubble Space Telescope (HST) revolutionized mankind’s objectification of the universe and its ‘weirdness’. Named after the influential American astronomer in the 20th century Edwin Hubble, who was responsible for the discovery that we live in one of the uncountable galaxies in a fast expanding universe, the impact of the HST as a scientific artifact will live on for many generations to come.

Read More

Zap Zap, Who’s There? WhatsApp and the Spread of Fake News During the 2018 Elections in Brazil

Zap Zap, Who’s There? WhatsApp and the Spread of Fake News During the 2018 Elections in Brazil

Work originally published as a blog post for MIT’s Global Media Technologies and Cultures Lab.

WhatsApp is a self-defined “fast, simple, secure messaging and calling” app. Its meteoric growth in the decade since the January 2009 release has earned it one of the largest user bases in the world, with an impressive total of 1.5 billion monthly users.[1] Its simplicity is, indeed, one of its core selling points, especially in countries in the Global South where Internet services are becoming increasingly present in people’s everyday lives and are shaping the simplest forms of interaction. The app considers every phone number as a user and automatically adds your phone’s contact list as your WhatsApp contacts. It enables users to message these contacts and also to create groups with them, which in Brazil has become a widespread cultural practice.

Read More