The poet Marianne Moore defined poetry as an imaginary garden with real toads in it. I’d like to propose something similar here. That if we have a technical garden, there can be real things growing in it. It is not only possible, it was inevitable. The horizon was scanned and there was stuff in it. Moreover, it was possible to put our own stuff in it, stuff that belonged indeed to the technical age right before our own. And that can be very new and fun to do.
So, imagine Perseus without the help of a mirror to ‘not-see’ Medusa. Had he looked at this snake-ridden monster directly, rather than a reflection of her on the back of his shiny shield, then death was instant. Like others before him without the helping hand of technology (not to mention sandals that helped him fly about nimbly, as well as a cap that made him invisible!), another stone statue.
Picture not what we will imagine—regardless of any efforts to squelch or suffocate it or mute it—to be a snake-headed monster, something to fear and loathe and conquer, but something else. Picture it to be not baneful, but perhaps beneficial. I cannot myself yet imagine it. But I do know that it is inescapable because we humans are both biological and technical animals. And at times, if we welcome them, though it is rumored they have fled, we may receive the helping hand of the gods. The news is very old.