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This video was filmed on Thursday, June 14th at the 2012 National Geographic Explorers Symposium at National Geographic Society headquarters in Washington, D.C.


National Geographic Emerging Explorer and cyborg anthropologist Amber Case studies how the interaction between humans and computers is changing the way we think, act, and understand our world. As an anthropologist, Case observes an increasingly symbiotic relationship between people and technology. In an age when virtually everyone uses mobile phones and computers to communicate, work, learn, and play, the entire world is her field site.


  • What is a cyborg? (start-2:12 min.)
  • How evolving tools change human interaction with the world (2:13-3:30 min.)
  • Studying cyborg anthropology (3:31-4:15 min.)
  • Creating physical manifestations of data: a literal Facebook "wall" (4:16-5:54 min.)
  • Using technology as a tool to "amplify yourself" (5:55-7:34 min.)
  • Where does the future come from? Example: Google goggles (7:35-9:29 min.)
  • How technology influences human decision-making (9:30-13:36 min.)

Strategies for Using Video in a Variety of Learning Environments

  • Have students preview several of the videos and choose the one they find most inspiring. Have students describe in writing a conversation they might have with the speaker(s).
  • Freeze the video on a relevant image. Have students observe details in the still image and jot down predictions of what the full video might address. Discuss students’ ideas before and after watching the video.
  • Pose an open-ended question before students watch the video, and have them discuss their ideas before and after in small groups.
  • Have students determine what they think the key message of this video is. Was the speaker effective in getting his or her message across?
  • Show a short clip to engage students during class, and then have students watch the full video at home and write a paragraph responding to the content or a question you give them.
  • Have students note statements that represent facts or opinions, including where it’s difficult to tell the difference. What further research might help distinguish facts vs. opinions? How might the speaker’s viewpoint compare with others’ viewpoints about a topic?

anything an organism does involving action or response to stimulation.

cultural anthropology

study of the learned behavior of groups of people in specific environments.

Emerging Explorer

an adventurer, scientist, innovator, or storyteller recognized by National Geographic for their visionary work while still early in their careers.


scientific studies done outside of a lab, classroom, or office.


having to do with geography and location.

mobile technology

tools that are not dependent on a fixed location or set of machinery.