Close your eyes and imagine an image of a cosmonaut/astronaut/taikonaut/supernaut on a spacewalk. We can interpret this image in different ways. Here is a figure radiating agency, appearing as the executive agent incarnate, especially perhaps to himself. But instead of the ultimate frontier-puncturing space cowboy, I see instead a fragile animal in a shell, a pink putty sculpture unable to leave its home without bringing an artificial atmosphere with it as it toddles outward. It is tethered to multiple umbilical cords, re-encased in an inorganic placenta without which the creature would instantly die, and in a flash we understand that its condition is not some superhuman exception, but the same as ours here down on the surface.45 We too would die without our automated life support systems. Floating in zero-gravity, this human degree zero demonstrates this irreducible technological entanglement under harsh experimental conditions. It’s not just that we use technologies to survive, but that we evolved in symbiotic relationship with the technical cascades that shaped us, and we are nothing without them. As Disability Studies shows, “disability” is less a special state of particular bodies than a general and relative condition[…]”
Excerpt From: Benjamin H. Bratton. “The Terraforming.” Apple Books.
Yesterday’s designer was closely linked with the command-control vision of the engineer, but today’s designer is closer to the if-then approach of the programmer.