Blogs have been popping all week about the Precorder app: essentially a memory buffer interface for iPhone video, it’s always recording; you hit record after something notable happens, and it saves the last few seconds of video. My first though was, okay, so it’s not even about shooting video in the same way. You don’t plan shots; you tag them after the fact. Precorder is like a highlighter for reality.
But I didn’t pull the post trigger myself until the end of Bruce Sterling’s Vimeo Festival keynote, when he’s talking about a near future in which the network is so ubiquitous and memory so cheap that everything is recorded all the time. It’s like a distributed version of Rewind, the Autobot archivist, whose motto was, “Too Much Information Is Never Enough!” The Internet becomes a reality buffer, and making a video doesn’t involve a camera. Instead, it’s about defining a “locus of effectuality”—the place and point in time at which you aim the special effects.
That’s the job of a reality highlighter—it’s a reticle for special effects.
Of course if you prefer, you could just go read another app review.