We encode our electronics with our memory, identity, and legacy, creating complicated artifacts, and eventually, complicated trash. The relentless need to upgrade software and hardware to remain relevant has made it increasingly difficult to plan very far into the future, leading consumers to make short-sighted decisions that negatively impact our species and planet. Christensen refers to the short cycles of contemporary technological obsolescence as “technology time.”
Technology Time is an evolving series of photographs of obsolete technology in electronic waste dumps around the world. Christensen has been to India three times to document the global e-waste industry as it manifests on the ground in India. Most of these photographs are from informal e-waste processing markets in and around Delhi. In these photographs we see the material flow created by upgrade culture, the aggregate of which is toxic e-waste, one of the devastating environmental disasters of the 21st century. These images remind us of the critical need for design practices that transcend “technology time,” so that we may consider the future in the very long, long term.