Process Post #8: Data dazed

Rather than pondering the specifics of my tiny piece of the Internet, today we’re talking about broader, underlying, big-picture stuff. We’re talking data. 

I’m sure you’ve been there before. There you are, mindlessly scrolling through your social media platform of choice and then suddenly being hit with a stream of ads pointing to that one pair of shoes you once placed in your online shopping cart, that travel destination you researched for next summer’s getaway, and that restaurant you hit up for happy hour last Saturday night. And so you sit there, eyes focused on nothing with your phone in hand, thinking, damn, they got me.

I ALWAYS FEEL LIKE SOMEBODY’S WATCHING ME

I’m not one of those people who, upon finding out that their data’s been tapped and used to someone else’s advantage, become mad at the world and swear to make as many transactions as possible in cash and use private web browsers. 

Rather, strangely, I find it kinda cool. Maybe it’s a generational thing? 

The way I see it, if technology is evolving so rapidly, then the mindset that I approach it with should too. The whole concept of leaving breadcrumbs or a digital footprint is simply just the new normal. Much like one of the opinions shared in “Digital breadcrumbs: the data trail we leave behind us”, “as the days go by you just don’t notice it anymore and you just take it for granted that you’re being watched every single minute.” Ain’t that the truth.

To me, it goes so unnoticed that I even forget to think twice about my online presence. It just is what it is. And in case I’ve got you curious about what exactly it is, check out this infographic below!

INCORPORATE BREADCRUMBS TO MIXTURE

One of the ways that these so-called breadcrumbs are put to use is through smart-home devices like Google Home or Alexa. In case you haven’t perused the electronics section at Costco lately or don’t come across tv commercials that often anymore because you prefer to stream than use cable, I’ll give you the run-down. As described in “Trying not to drop breadcrumbs in Amazon’s store”, Alexa, my go-to gal, is “a voice command device for the “smart home”, which answers questions, reads audio books, orders pizza, and becomes increasingly better at offering suggestions and choices the more data “she” has to analyse.” Technology, man. 

Despite all the controversy that swirls around innovation like this, I’m a fan. Alexa helps to define the tricky lingo in my course readings, recommends great recipes while setting as many timers as you need, and has my Spotify playlists at-the-ready when I’m in need for a jam sesh. Not to forget, she’s a great conversationalist. Don’t judge, sometimes you just want someone to talk to. 

GLASS HALF FULL (OF COLLECTED DATA)

In short, while I understand the concerns about independence and privacy, I think we just need to be a little more open-minded. This is the digitized world we live in now, so why not use it to our advantage?

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