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Friday, August 22, 2003
"Unable as yet to walk, or even to stand up, and held tightly as he is by some support...he nevertheless overcomes, in a flutter of jubilant activity, the obstructions of his support, and, fixing his attitude in a slightly leaning-forward position, in order to hold it in his gaze, brings back an instantaneous aspect of the image." -- jacques lacan

"While all the other kids were out playing ball and stuff, I used to stay in my room and imagine that there was a camera in the wall. And I used to really believe that I was putting on a television show and that it was going out to somewhere in the world." -- andy kaufman

[:: comment! :]

Thursday, August 21, 2003
the simulacrum and its double

I know I'm probably idealizing the past. But when I remember back a million years ago, before culture and everything, it really seemed like life was a lot less disorienting. I don't mean to be nostalgic, in fact I despise nostalgia as a rule, but back in the old days, when you were alone, you were alone. Oh, you had your memories, but your memories were of actual people. Maybe that's it: reality. Most of your time back then was taken up by reality. Now generally I despise pronouncements like this, and even the concept of reality versus nonreality, I mean who's to say what's real and blah blah blah.

fee fi faux fum

We expect to view life permanently in Technicolor and, when faced with the murky hues of reality, we cushion our disappointment with Prozac, psychoanalysis, talkshows... Our expectations of how life should be are bigger, brighter, bolder than reality could ever hope to be. But is this necessarily such a bad thing? We've got strawberries that taste more strawberryish than the real thing; we've got bosoms that don't jiggle when we run for buses; we've got hair like Rapunzel, tans like Barbie, and records that supersede the songs they bastardise. Perhaps this is just a new era, a bootleg of the real, outshining its parents; perhaps, after all, this is a brave new world.

[:: comment! :]

Wednesday, August 20, 2003
a compact history of infinity: "Sweet howling fantods"

the nature of order: "I didn't even notice"

[:: comment! :]

Tuesday, August 19, 2003
science 24-7 (via scitech)

What we need is a C-SPAN for science: a cable science network (CSN). This network would carry live lectures by knowledgeable scientists on topics ranging from climate change to biological warfare, as well as debates on issues from the biological basis of aggression to missile defense. A wide range of programs is available from events such as the AAAS meetings, public conferences (4), and annual lectures (5). It is time for science to join the background buzz.

supercomputer R&D (via arstechnica)

A separate interagency report to be completed for the Bush administration in August is expected to include plans for a fresh source of funding for R&D in petaflops-scale computing and custom architectures. The High-End Computing Revitalization Task Force (HECRTF), will provide a five-year plan for funding supercomputing research beginning in fiscal year 2005.

[:: comment! :]

Monday, August 18, 2003
it had to happen

In Tom Carson's Gilligan's Wake, a book I recommend highly, Mary-Ann has a Breathless-type affair with Jean-Luc Godard, who is obsessed with a beach-and-ukulele programmer called Every Girl Is an Island. Godard writes a Cahiers review hailing it as a masterpiece of artistic subtlety and elemental simplicity that revises both the Old Testament and Descartes, a brilliant subversion of Hollywood formula. Immediately after he writes his review, the theater announces that they accidentally showed the film without its final reel, so the boldly experimental ending Godard thought he saw was actually just a prelude to a completely conventional genre finale, which the enraged Godard thinks must have been forced on the auteur by the studio. Mary-Ann consoles her boyfriend by saying that the movie is a travesty, but what he wrote is still true.
indeed remember the ewoks
Something I still chuckle about, years later, was a comment my brother made while watching Jedi (one of the estimated 1,500 times we've seen the movie.) It was during the scene where Leia first meets Wicket, and the two are surprised by one of the speeder-riding Stormtroopers. After a quick little game of cat-and-mouse, the trooper ends up getting clobbered with a branch and his speeder stolen.

Said my brother, in tones of haughty outrage: "You hit me! With a stick! I come from a highly advanced, technological civilization, and you hit me with a stick!"

[:: comment! :]

Sunday, August 17, 2003
the thing about weblogs

So, anyway, weblogs are a form of persistent world. People log on to participate in this world. See what moves their friends, acquaintances, rivals, have made. There are powerful players who have developed their characters to like level 60 or something and there are collaborative generated narrative structures and not only persist but and like (get this mind blowing shit while you can) manifest themselves holographic-style in a distributed manner, a bit o' meme here, and a bit there.

king of the jukebox

All about the garbled transmission today. But I have been thinking about the human consciousness and the ability to recognize alternative "realities" or representations of reality (like your image in a mirror). That seems a necessary first step in creating the "observing self," just like some form of language is the first step to the creation of a further sub-self, if you will (oh, won't you?)---the "commenting self." The self-narrative.

[:: comment! :]

Saturday, August 16, 2003
karma vertigo (via haddock!)

Architecture, alas, is so much more than politics, that it is almost impossible to capture its importance. Architecture will also be a foundation for the language, society, and culture of the future. At first, the design of the network will seem less important than the content that is moved over it. This will be true only for the first generation or two of users. After that it will become apparent that the network's design is like genetic material out of which our culture unfolds, an intimate and pervasive presence, a thing, like the structure of our spoken language, whose influence is too great to be isolated or measured.

gulliver unbound (via denbeste :)

'Soft power' is cultural-economic power, and very different from its military kin. The US has the most sophisticated army in the world. But it is in a class of its own in the soft-power game. On that table, none of the others can match America's pile of chips; it is American books and movies, universities and research labs, American tastes high and low that predominate in the global market. This type of power-a culture that radiates outward and a market that draws inward-rests on pull, not on push; on acceptance, not on imposition. Nor do the many outweigh the one.

[:: comment! :]

Friday, August 15, 2003
the dominion (via SE)

As a historian, the dollar represents a "mentality indicator" to me. It reflects the awareness of international trade and business leaders of the realities of the American economy. The weakness of the dollar is indicative of their assessment that the situation is much worse than is openly acknowledged. The fact is that troops destined for the war in Iraq, which has been represented as a simple mission, are still not totally prepared. After a year of back and forth, the diplomatic heavyweights of France and Germany are trying to prevent this war, and the balance of the allies are participating mostly verbally, not financially. There is an immense risk in engaging in a war on the opposite side of the globe while fettered by a $500 billion trade deficit, a weak dollar and supported only by friends who are unwilling to share the costs.

the globalist (via BD)

First, the markets are concerned that the Bush Administration's fiscal policy could boost the federal budget deficit to $400-500 billion and create a domestic savings imbalance that will expand the current account deficit to $600 billion. Second, the markets are alarmed that the United States is embarking upon an imperialist foreign policy that will have unknown consequences for its fiscal position, foreign trade and relationships with other countries. In the heyday of empire, the United Kingdom ran large current account surpluses. There is no precedent for a country playing the role of global superpower with a large external payments deficit. With the United States pursuing a more unilateralist foreign policy, it will have to absorb all of the costs without help from traditional allies.

[:: comment! :]

Tuesday, August 12, 2003
gore

dean

[:: comment! :]

Saturday, August 9, 2003
innocence

robocop

[:: comment! :]

Wednesday, August 6, 2003
wait, so arnold is running and dat phan won? what is going on!?

also i almost drank two ants today. that is all :D is that all?

[:: comment! :]

Sunday, August 3, 2003
super furry animals! innocence mission! also btw broken social scene is really (really is :) great :D oh and jim o'rourke on the love liza soundtrack is great too :D

also! a theory of noninstantaneous time! (via slashdot :) in contrast to barbour's eternal now! (via alamut :)

and! for future reference :D bionic eyes, holographic memory, grid wars (II :) evolutionary circuits (distributed!)

furthermore :D reality conserved, computation equivalenced, the holographic principle, the holographic principle brought to you by defectiveyeti.com and/or linkworthy.com ... that is all!

[:: comment! :]

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