The Digital Nightmare

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‘Software is eating the world’ proclaimed Software Engineer, Marc Andreesan. What an interesting and somewhat frightening thought!

The idea that the digital world is taking over our reality sounds like the plot from a Sci-Fi horror movie! Well it seems that this ‘nightmare’ is becoming a reality.

We now live in a world where the digitalised is more prominent than the physical world in which we actually live. We now feel the need to post status updates of our current locations and ‘instagram’ images, rather than absorb the reality with our own eyes. Jean Baudrillard, Philosopher, predicted such an idea in his work ‘Simulacra and Simulation’. He alluded to the digital world as a ‘Map’ which, once upon a time, mirrored the ‘Territory’, being the real world. However it now appears that the ‘Map’ has surpassed us in the ‘real’ world – ‘it is the map that precedes the territory’. As James Cherkoff, Course Director at CIM, so aptly put it, ‘Rather than digital marketing, we are marketing in a digital world’.

Software giants, Microsoft,  demonstrated this idea perfectly in their recent Xbox ad. Breaking Bad Actor, Aaron Paul, is seen saying ‘Xbox on’ to verbally instruct his console to turn on. This led to viewers’ own Xboxs switching on – The perfect example of the ‘Map’ preceding, and controlling, elements of the ‘real’.

Google’s idea of the Path-to-Purchase demonstrates the presence of the digital in our everyday lives. It states that initially, there were two ‘Moments of Truth’ which led to the consumer buying a product.

1) Standing in front of the item which they want.
2) Owning the item.

But Google has gone one step further. They have introduced the idea of the ‘Zero Moment of Truth’. This is when, even after physically seeing a product in the real world, we feel the need to browse the digital world for its opinion of our desired product.

It appears that we are now living in a digitalised matrix where, if you have no digital presence, you may soon be forgotten. 

What a scary thought.

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