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Lo and Behold: the future is now, review of Werner Herzog documentary

Oct 4, 2016 - COMING SOON.it, by Federico Rounds

Lo and Behold: the future is now, review of Werner Herzog documentary

Change the territories, but the explorations Werner Herzog are always conducted in the same spirit. Change the spaces and objects, subjects, but the mapping remains the same, and the same is also the desire to discover what is, what could be, beyond the known limits, across the border as possible. 

In the past German explored and told the desire to conquer the Amazon skies, attempts to merge with the Great Northern wilderness, worked analogy between the ice and the polar seas and outer space, and you are immersed in the time capsule of ancient caves. In each of these situations and circumstances, he chased the man, the meaning of his existence, the desire to overcome and move forward the threshold of its possibilities: its potential.

With Lo and Behold: the future is now the territory is intangible and metaphysical of the digital world, internet, artificial intelligence, and attitude of Herzog is the same as always. That of the cartographer, mapping and describes an atlas (also historical) universe of bits; the explorer, who wants to see what's next, what is beyond (and who answers "I would come along" Elon Musk when the entrepreneur talks about travel to Mars); and that of the philosopher who collects and raises questions and questions of how man can live and mutate in this new context, wonderful, extreme and full of questions and uncertainties about the future.

There are plenty of questions that, from the very first minutes, are made by Herzog its respondents, in itself, to humanity, in Lo and Behold . How to control what happens on the network? What are the ethical implications of artificial intelligence? How to manage the right to privacy and at the same time ensuring the subjects against looting online? How to react to a digital pervasiveness that creates dependencies? What is the real difference between physical and digital lives life? What would happen in the face of sudden and catastrophic disappearance of the Internet? The possibility exists that the developments network its own consciousness? How to react to the inevitable slippage of morality, the very definition of the human, in the digital world?

Neither indiscriminately apologetic before the extraordinary opportunities that technology portends nor unjustifiably Luddite in the face of risks and its dark sides, Herzog is as always accompanied by deep human and anthropological curiosity, always he has a careful look at the philosophical implications of what He resumes, and does not hide his sympathy for the less-aligned characters he meets on his journey: heretic Ted Nelson , to Musk , the hacker Kevin Mitnick , the physicist and astronomer Lawrence Krauss . 

And, in the increasingly intricate flow, complex and overflowing with information, it recognizes the utopia of telepathy or self-consciousness of the network that challenge very human - superhuman, indeed - that has always fascinated and always the charm.