Who’s our daddy?
Many mathematicians and physicists support the hypothesis that humans are not real — that our universe is merely a computer simulation, and that all life is but an algorithm running within it. Offering an alternate perspective are the ancient astronaut theorists, who believe today’s Homo Sapiens are the result of meddlesome aliens who long ago tinkered with the indigenous ape population’s DNA.
But who’s to say both viewpoints can’t be correct? After all, a simulated being has no way of knowing that it’s a simulation. So if we take a leap of faith and say that humans were indeed created by aliens, then isn’t it still entirely possible that those aliens were, themselves, merely computer simulations — essentially an invasive subroutine sent to modify a portion of our own galaxy’s code, like a virus that screws with a Word file?
We humans have been fighting over the daddy question for thousands of years. Personally, I don’t really care whether Pop is a geeky hacker, a smooth grey alien, or an old dude wearing a toga and sporting a long white beard. What matters isn’t who or what made us. What matters is what they plan to do with us.
Because let’s face it, the human body is hopelessly outdated. It’s a relic from another time — perilously close to total obsolescence and in dire need of a complete design refresh.
Need proof? Look no further than that pile of keys, coins, cards and mobile devices we’re forced to carry around. Isn’t it about time we borrowed a feature from our marsupial friends and received a built-in pouch of our own?
And haven’t we humans convincingly demonstrated that we’re way overdue for some man wings? We’ve built all kinds of freakish machinery to compensate for our general lack of mobility, so it’s rather obvious we could stand to sprout a few feathers. Besides, equipping us with wings would significantly reduce mankind’s carbon footprint, helping to save the planet for all manner of critters far cuter than us.
I’m just brainstorming here, but wouldn’t a chameleon-like ability to change skin tone relegate racism to the history books? Not to mention the liberating effect it would have on our wardrobe choices.
And why not pop a USB jack into our navels? What’s the use of having an empty port in the middle of our bellies if we can’t use it to power our smart phones or update our own operating systems?
And have you noticed that every time you go to the doctor, someone ends up sticking a needle in your arm? Either they want to inject something into our blood stream, or they want to suck something out of it. So is a simple vein tap really too much to ask for? I mean, all our other bodily fluids have their own taps, so why not blood?
And it’s not just new features that are needed — we humans have been living with some serious bugs for far too long. For example, we all come factory-equipped with two kidneys, two lungs, two eyes, two ears and even two nostrils, but we have only one heart. What’s with that? I don’t know about you, but I consider the fact I have a backup nipple, but no backup heart, to be a serious design flaw.
Naturally, as a photographer, I’ve also given significant thought to re-engineering humans in order to improve our photographic capabilities. At one point, I toyed with the idea that cameras might not even be necessary — that our eyes take in so much, that what we really need is a better way to file and access the visual information we gather throughout life — perhaps even using that oh-so-handy USB navel port to make a few prints.
But upon further thought, I realized such a technique would limit our photographic capabilities, not expand them. For one thing, all of us would be photographing with the same single focal length lens — our own eyes. We’d lose the ability to have telephoto lenses and wide-angle lenses, and thus the enjoyment of seeing what our eyes can not. Sure, we could modify the Human 2.0 spec to include “zoom eyes,” but humans still haven’t mastered the art of walking and texting — so this might be a feature best-left to the Human 3.0 project.
Furthermore, I realized that using our own eyes as lenses would limit us to only photographing what we, ourselves, could look at. And if that were the case, how could we ever take a selfie? We’d have to go back to the draconian days where the only way we could photograph ourselves was to look into a mirror. Yes, we could add “removable eyes” to our Human 2.0 spec, but how long do you think it would be until you dropped one of them down a sewer grate?
So photographically speaking, I now believe that our daddy got it right the first time, and that it’s actually a good thing we’re forced to rely on antiquated machinery in order to take photos. Creativity can never come from an algorithm. If today’s in-camera “scene modes” and software processing filters have taught us anything, they’ve taught us this.
Or course, if we ourselves are truly nothing but simulations and were thus created algorithmically, then to state that creation can not be born from algorithms would imply that we were never actually created at all. Which would mean that…
PANIC: “SysRq : Trigger a crashdump” PID: 0 COMMAND: “reason” TASK: fffffff97800ad0 (1 of 2) [THREAD_INFO: fffffff978f2000] CPU: 0 STATE: TASK_RUNNING (CRASHED) crash > _
©2015 grEGORy simpson
ABOUT THE PHOTOS: All three photos were shot with my newest best friend — the Leica Monochrom M (Type 246). To compensate, all three were also shot with relatively inexpensive lenses. My Voigtlander 50mm f/1.5 found its way onto the camera for “The Patented Reverse Hail-Mary Selfie” while “PCT (Personal Cell Tower) — Prototype” used the cheap yet capable Voigtlander 21mm f/4 Color Skopar. “State of the Art Stick Technology” used a decidedly non-state of the art Leitz 35mm f/3.5 Elmar thread mount lens from the 1940’s.
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