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Managing the Self (working title) comes from the idea that the identity or the notion of the self would be something statistical or mesurable. This idea came to be when I found out you can download all of your data from Facebook into a folder. My first intention was that I simply wanted to analyze this data, turns out there is already a well integrated online tool that is doing just that. Here is a guide on downloading your own data and the web tool for analysing:

How to download your messenger data Messenger analyser online tool

This got me thinking what else I could do with my data and through my recently acquired knowlegde in Python and JavaScript (two programming languages) I started filtering through my data with the aim of somehow projecting it into 3D space in an virtual environment.

Im inspired by the german writer Hans-Georg Moeller who talks about this concept that we live in a time of "profilicity" where the creation of self is about curating and managing different social profiles, both online and IRL. He argues that this is emerging in contrast to an earlier idea of finding your truest or most authentic self within, which he ascribes as the period of "authenticity". Moeller himself says he is inspired by chinese philosophy and by daoism in regard to these concepts.

Podcast episode about Hans-Georg Moeller

I'm also inspired by the though-provoking and interesting short article "Thinking post-identity" by Judith Roof. I think it gave me an extra push in really thinking "I'm here in my data, let's measure myself!" It is not so much about digitization or any other theme in particular but rather presents a way of thinking about identity in a certain way.

"Post-identity looks both at the ways identity categories are deployed to sustain the status quo and at the ways alternative notions of identity already exist that defy, deconstruct, or perversely alter power asymmetries. The idea, [...] is to avoid the structuralist, binary thinking that can only reproduce itself and the sets of empowerments, oppositional epistemologies, categorical generalizations, and economies that inhere." Read the article here!

The images above are outtakes from the VR-experience that was the result of this project. This last image is my favourite, it's messy, it is an overload of information and a trace of my digital presence!