Immortality Through Google

“Playing off the self-esteem theme, digital artist David Sullivan’s contribution to the show is the Ego Machine, a project that uses Google to project Sullivan’s soul into the future and puts the fun back into funeral.”

Wired has kept its eye on the continued use of google as a substrate for art. The phenomenon of search in itself continues to draw predictions of growth and specialization, but true to the creative spirit, an artist has found inspiration and means, to express art though google. 02:00 AM Feb. 16, 2005 PT

I have been contemplating “digital immortality” mself as of late, the idea that were I to be hit by a bus tomorrow, I would still be able to be googled. If not for an eternity, for several months anyway, perhaps even years. But Sullivans work takes it a step further. He cites memorials online as an example of digital artifacts that are being generated beyond a regular webpage. Sullivan’s ego machine, crawls the web looking for instances of his name. His application uses that data as input to and modifies his visage accordingly. This sort of technology is not new, and is provided as a service by companies such as Google Alert, to allow its customers to subscribe to individulaized search that are either deliverd by email, or can be explored through an interactive interface. I have yet to break down and oay for this service but I have been tracking a few searches through the free service for awhile now, of course one of them being my own name.