David Schwartz

David Schwartz runs argodesign’s New York studio focused on social impact and East Coast work. He leads creative programs in design, research, and strategy. In 2015, he was listed among the world’s top designers in Fast Company. He has spoken, led workshops, and taught at SXSW Eco, General Assembly, Austin Center 4 Design, Texas Anthropology Summit, Association for Community Design, Austin Design House, AIGA, Social Good Summit, and TEDx. His work or ideas have been published in New York Magazine, How Design, Makeshift Magazine, Impact Design Hub, FastCo Design, and MIT Tech Review. Previously, he worked at IBM Design on Watson from which he holds design patents and IP publications. On the side, David is an avid traveler and writer. 

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Talk: The Sublime: Simulating Our Ideal Selves for an Ideal World

Soon enough, our planet will be destroyed, but all we care about now is who liked our post on Instagram. We believe the personas we project online are in some ways ourselves, and it’s killing us.

These digital selves can live infinite lives to better our singular physical one. They are our most powerful resource for understanding who we should be—not who we are. Deep aggregation of our personal data hooked up with AIs can amalgam what Lacan calls the Ideal-I for the brief time we have, based on our biometrics, socioeconomics, interests, preferences, points of view, and external probabilities. En masse, this could project the effects of day-to-day life-threatening decisions onto human civilization itself.

We need to build The Sublime, an engine that can evaluate a human life by sending a million out into the digital world. What can we do when we can know everything? Or, even more importantly: how do we know when it’s the truth?