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Martin Heidegger’s ‘Dasein’ in an emerging digital ecology

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A.F. Lier,van | Article | Publication date: 27 October 2022
We are currently in the middle of the transformation from Martin Heidegger’s modern society to a society based on digital technology. In the developing digital society, humans in their current state of ‘Being’ are increasingly surrounded by systems that are networked and run based on algorithms, software, and data. These interconnected systems function, communicate, and interact in networks and driven by these algorithms, software, and data, which give them the ability to connect, calculate, and reveal. Jointly, these systems thus create a new and actual reality based on their mathematical and scientific background. In the present-day digital society, humans’ actual ‘state of Being’ is increasingly framed by what the digital technology reveals to us and enables. The transition to this new digital reality conjures up more and more questions as to whether we as humans sufficiently understand the essence of digital technology and whether we as humanity have sufficient knowledge and insight to be able to analyze and fathom the essence of the new digital ecology around us. In this article, I will use Heideggerian phenomenology as a philosophy to create a framework that will allow us to, based on phenomenological research into our current ‘Dasein’ or ‘being there’, gain deeper insight into the ‘Being’ of digital technology and the ensuing development of a digital reality for humanity as a whole.

Author(s) - affiliated with Rotterdam University of Applied Sciences

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