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Published September 03 2010

Morast: A look at the future: It’s all about you

You’re obsessed with yourself.

That’s cool to admit.

I’m obsessed with myself. And I’ll bet my Xbox 360 that the person sitting closest to you right now is just as self-obsessed.

Yeah, it’s vain.

It’s also the state of the times.

Regardless of what the PC police tell you, nothing is hotter right now than you are – except maybe Bristol Palin, whom everybody wants to pretend they don’t care about.

In fact, you’re so popular/important/charismatic that your memories are the centerpiece in this week’s edition of the Coolest Thing in the World, according to the Internet.

The latest example of universal cool is an online music video project featuring a score by The Arcade Fire and the nostalgia of your life.

Yes, YOUR life.

Thanks to Chris Milk, the interactive film project called “The Wilderness Downtown” – found at www.thewildernessdowntown.com – taps into your life by asking you to enter the address of the home where you grew up.

Once the program loads that info, it pulls images from Google Maps of the buildings at that address and inserts the pictures full of your memories into the film that also features a whimsical flock of birds and a kid wearing a hoodie. A warning though: If your computer whines from being overworked every time you surf on the Internet, the site probably won’t work on your underpowered machine.

Still, the project is brilliant and sure to mainline satisfaction directly into the id of anyone watching it.

But it’s also a forecast of the future, a future full of yourself.

According to the Web-savvy guys I talk to, the next evolution of Internet programming will allow sites to more easily build personalized functions into them.

That means much more of you, your interests and your desires.

For example, if you frequent a particular clothing website, you might be able to do things like upload a picture of your body so that every time you check out a shirt or dress, the clothes will be “placed” on your body for an instant audit of whether or not the garment works on you.

This is cool. And probably freaky to a ton of people. So was the idea of controlled fire, but we got over the fear and realized accepting the flame made our lives so much easier.

It’s the same with your modesty; get over it.

In the near future, the rest of the world won’t matter. Everything will be all about you all the time. Your face will be on the bodies featured in online ads. Your car will be the one featured in clips about driving in the rain. And your favorite bands will provide the score to every website that has a musical intro.

It’s going to be all about you. So get used to it.


Readers can reach Forum Features Editor Robert Morast at (701) 241-5518

or rmorast@forumcomm.com