nqpaofu#24 memory high : disclaimer : must link : myURLs : previous issue : next issue
notes quotes provocations and other fair use
conversational drift, informatic license
by jouke kleerebezem
the mark of launch-and-learn publishing: corrections are generally made within 36 hours.
light grey (up to #777777) text paragraphs are subject to editorial scrutiny and should be considered temporary
4 February 2000
Ahmedabad Letters (unedited archive) (nqpaofu.com/2000/al.html)
2way to go: ahmedabad letters 6-12 February
NQPAOFU 'memory high' will most probably not be updated until February 15, unless I will easily find a machine and the tools to build and ftp to my server, which seems unlikely. Meanwhile I take NQP on the road to India as the Ahmedabad Letters (unedited archive). Thus I will keep you posted from any web connection that I will find. And: we're 2way for a change... now you can be my blog away from the blog too! If you don't find me posting you can take it over for a week or so.
in media agency, in media genre
Meanwhile for the Letters I would suggest to post specific agency requests, or feed it with need-to-know Indian stories to support me, and guide me. Not that I will have a whole lot of time on my hands to make this into a full-blown project, but I like the idea of getting some traffic going back and forth. I will see to get students involved if possible. All along the secret word will be 'performance' and if web publishing wouldn't revolutionize what the Eameses started last century, I don't know what I'm doing. lotafutures.com is ours! So far we have 80 applicants for the Doors of Perception 10-11 February workshop (see also 2 February's links and more Eamesdropping) and several dates with industry (both cottage and tech), and on the NGO level.
typical pre-voyage information bits: pols and havelis( http://ahmedabad.com/incity/poles.htm )
Ahmedabad is the capital (the 'Manchester') of Gujarat, which is the textile region. The city has the said best textile museum in the world: the Calico Museum of Textiles. The museum is in Sarabhai House, a former haveli, in the Shahi bagh area. Here's another link to Places of Interest in Ahmedabad. Furthermore,
- In many streets, there are Jain bird-feeding places known as parabdis. Children catch and release pigeons
for the fun of it. The older parts of the city are divided into totally separated areas known as pols. It's easy to get lost.
Pols date back to 1714, when communal riots necessitated greater security and gave rise to self sufficient micro neighbourhoods with a distinctive residential pattern and irregular street clusters. Over the years, as the close knit pattern of Pol living nucleated deep amity, neighbourhoods were formed around common professions rather than religions.
Then my French will come in handy if I should run into Frederic Auclair or one of the other French architects who research the old city (pol territory), after 'having visited different cities in India before deciding on Ahmedabad', as 'there is a large diversity in culture and architecture', (...) when even 'the influence of different eras can be seen in a single house!' (Reminds me of the old mill I'm leaving, which is also very much 'learning architecture'.
overhyping the Internet
It's striking how little usable information you gather in a night's surfing for Ahmedabad. Guess that's how the idea for epinions came about. Haven't looked there yet... Travel is so idiosyncratic. I don't take anyone's advice on it. But I would have loved to read a good Ahmedabad story. Know what? Closest thing to get me in the mood was Terry's. And then there was Philippe Dauvergne's: 'Gunjarat c'est super bon'... who needs more recommendation? Eat your eheart out there...
product to service shift
I had not seen him since last year April. At France Telecom early this morning I ordered an extra line to hopefully overcome persistent phone frustrations, concerning analog/ISDN hardware incompatibilities. After necessary bureaucracies the technical crew entered the shop and Philippe and I recognized each other. We discussed the tech and after he told me Thierry had told him that I was going to India and where I was going... Ah, Thierry, he had visited us yesterday afternoon to check our line and noticed my tickets, obtained from travelprice.com, on top of the pile. He had tried Travelprice for his tickets to Guadeloupe, but in vain. So we discussed online shopping and hopping, he brought the Moulin news to his friends and there I stood with Philippe who had been to India 8 times. C'est pas vraie! Mais si. He knows the Gunjarat like the inside of his pockets, you know, where all the Telecom nuts and bolts are... I mean, yea, intermediation really works. If only you would know before, where the heck all that knowledge is. Some web publishing sure would come in handy. Next time I'll see him I'll tell him to start a blog. I'm sure dauvergne.com is still available.
3 February 2000
eve of long haul
Bill Beaty's Traffic Waves Physics
Amadavar: wood or city
Edward Terry, chaplain to the British ambassador Thomas Roe, on Ahmedabad (then Amadavar), in the early 17th century:
- it is the manner in many places to plant about and amongst their buildings, trees which grow high and broad, the shadow whereof keeps their houses by far more cool; this I observed in a special manner when we were ready to enter Amadavar; for it appeared to us as if we had been entering a wood, rather than a city.
(from: Indian Mansions, A Social History of the Haveli, by Sarah Tillotson)
Well, them green days are long gone. Sic Transit Gloria Mundi. But the information is alive as it was 400 years ago. Ha! Let's regress for a better view ahead.
mobility infarct and anti-traffic
Even when not too relevant to any of my current preoccupations, this is too good to leave unnoticed, re: my interest last year in the KIKO mobility paradox: Traffic Waves Physics, by 'bored commuter' Bill Beaty (courtesy Linkwatcher Metalog).
- Here's a general principle I take from the above. (I guess it's obvious in hindsight!) ANTITRAFFIC DESTROYS TRAFFIC.
Empty spaces can eat a traffic jam. While I was slightly slowing down to allow a space to gradually open up before me, I was
creating a pulse of "antitraffic". When my antitraffic-pulse finally collided with the dense "traffic" of the jam, the two
annihilated each other like a positron meeting an electron. It's nonlinear soliton physics. The soliton waves destroy each other,
leaving only a slight smudge behind.
2 February 2000
(more) eamesing (to follow)
Ahmedabad Cybercafés (sites of NQPAOFU Ahmedabad Letters production 6-13 February) (www.cybercafe.com/city.asp?name=Ahmedabad)
Eameses' India Report (www.nid.edu/C_R_Eames_Report.htm)
Eames Office (www.eamesoffice.com)
National Design Institute + Doors of Perception (www.nid.edu/cnews.htm)
I perused the 1958 India Report by Charles and Ray Eames, upon which' recommendations the 1961 National Institute of Design in Ahmedabad is conceived. The report is remarkable in some of its observations. Foreseeing (and propagating in a rational, smart, empowering yet sensible manner) the shift from 'tradition' to 'communication', it introduces design as a multidisciplinary expertise, focussing on a 'consciousness of quality' based on 'survival not caprice'. The report is early in the acknowledgement of the importance of services as the sine qua non of artifacts, environmental issues, and the all inducing use of 'communication' in all media, of the design effort. Also the report emphasizes the need 'not only to solve problems, but to help others to solve their own problems'. Here the shift from artifacts to services, using communication and information is clearly anticipated.
- India stands to face the change with three great advantages:
first: she has a tradition and a philosophy familiar with the meaning of creative destruction.
second: she need not make all the mistakes others have made in the transition.
third: her immediate problems are well defined : FOOD, SHELTER, DISTRIBUTION, POPULATION.
This last stated advantage is a great one. Such ever-present statements of need should block or counteract any self-conscious urge to be original. They should put consciousness of quality -- selection of first things first -- (investigation into what are the first things) on the basis of survival not caprice.
survival not caprice
Wonder what +40yrs have brought in the ways of survival and caprice, and 'creative destruction'... Eameses introduced the 'graduate architect' as their model trainee for the complicated task of guiding tradition to and through a communications revolution. Would that be an interaction designer today? Could it be? That's clearly the Doors message, but personally I will have to see how much 'cultural intelligence' it takes today, to promote whatever is left of a traditional culture, to perform on a global stagewithout being mere exoticism.
The Eameses' last visit to the NID was in 1978, Charles Eames' year of death. Some photographs show the dream couple engaged in lively discussions with NID staff and students. I'm excited to be in their footsteps in three days from today. I've opened a file Ahmedabad Letters which will provide a communications channel for me to have a portable NQPAOFU (from one of the 6 Ahmedabad cybercafés probably), and for those interested to commission me for special 'artifacts or services' to let me know.
John just mailed the Doors team's Ahmedabad program. Jeez, hope to find some time for my Letters from the Cybersuvidha... %-)
competing cities?: contentville, Celebration, Ahmedabad, St.Germain-des-Bois
CBS and publisher Steven Brill are getting together to launch the well-funded Contentville.com. The site will sell content of many types.
Very tight sunglasses, batteries, batteries, garden equipment (we have to tailor), gloves, hydrating cream, food for the week (at the Moulin), Le Monde Interactif, R+r presents, batteries.
1 February 2000
in media performance
20000201 links to follow
Temperature rose to 15°C this afternoon, releasing that smel of spring (there's always this first faint sign, early). Mr. and Ms. Foloppe, the previous Moulin owners, passed by to enjoy 'their' garden. Makes one wonder about ownership. Every plant or tree has a story connected to their 25 years at the mill, which they built up from near ruin state. When they visit they always exactly notice what we've changed, added, removed. Inside we've left it basically as we found it (including some of his hunting trophies on the wall in the dining room...). It is sometimes like living in this hotel, with your own furniture and other stuff around you. It's yet another of the many forms of different lives in one. We like to take it easy on the changes.
So the Foloppes brought a huge bag of stale bread for the animals and we gave them 10 litres of 'their' delicious diuretic source water in return. There was a belated chocolate father christmas for R+r (who will now have to figure out between them whether to eat it, or keep it as a statue), my tarte tatin and our other guests' champagne (he's a wine dealer from NL). We shared stories around the table and skipped dinner for more cheese later in the evening.
Re: content, form, information's slippery slope: I could be lost in empty rhetoric: all form, naive sentimentality: all content, bachelor logic: all data, but I'm definitely not all wrong: no content, no form, no information.
29-31 January 2000
content, formrough casts
Tell me, why am I just reminded of Dave W., upon having processed below burlesque... because he's such a Rudy?... oh well, just be amazed at my let's have fun! middlenamed middleman, Davos Newbie Winer's observations, as long as the party lasts (27 January-1 February), and ponder the information revolution, trying not to get too depressed (www.scripting.com) (I should have sent the Angels)
Listening to: Frank Zappa singing 'crying for Sharleena' and 'I would be so delighted if they would just send my baby home to me', after vacuum cleaning the salon to the loud tones of Chunga's Revenge and The Clap and burlesque ('hi and howdydoodee, I'm the union man and you can call me Rudy') Rudy Wants To Buy Yez A Drink. Having matured on wah-wah pedals and other gently weeping string distortions, electric guitar lines are engraved all over my brain. Even after years they fit the grooves.
notes to self: I am in a real good mood. I am in a real good mood. Ha!, I really am.
Expect to find no escape from content. We are all about content, and serve a lifetime to fit form to it. We design content by reflex, but form is an unfaithful love child, and content no fixed realityuntameable whimit always comes with shadow bastard form. Shortcoming or grace, whenever we sense content, we stare in the many faces of its adulterous embodiments. Our limited performance is to endorse form for what it's worth, for what it has to offer us, for its betrayal. This original treachery is exactly what makes the authorial effort the exciting business that it is, and all of us addicted to appearances, experience, utterance, communication, while our fiery imagination is aroused by ambiguity, mistakes, misunderstandings, misinterpretations and deceit, rather than by symmetry, conformity, or balance.
One suffers (creative: existential) crises only because of lack of form (or insufficiency of deceit), never because of lack of content. Content lacking form is sickening to the mind and the body, as it simply suffocates you. Like unanswered love, it invades you and takes you over, without much signalling to the outer world. At such moments, with no form at hand to dump all that content, all you wish for is to be able to beat it out of your system and breathe pure nothing for a changeeven pure form would soften your pains, but soon after a quick relief it introduces boredom, so what you really want is to drift off on an up current of nothingness... to get out of the loop.
Drifting in nothingness is not our natural direction however. Because we could never design it, because it is beyond our imagination, it is completely unlike what the form following species can expect to accomplish.
Information sometimes provides the break you need from the occasional 'all content and no form to fit'. The less content-like or form-like information appears to you, the better it soothes your frustrations. Like a breeze of nothingness it warms the face turned towards the screen, or sheet of paper, or speaker face, or singer voice, like being lost gazing at any other natural phenomenon. Information comes to the rescue when we're threatened by content without form, or form without content (how to explain these theoretical impossibilities?): it is as twisted a situation as it sounds, nevertheless we are all so familiar with its blinding panic.
'Designing performance' means providing form which, much without being a mould, nevertheless fits content to information exchange. Most content doesn't easily fit to the kind of un-moulding communication yet. If that's found to be true, for information exchange and new media we yet have to find/develop/articulate the right content (I do firmly believe in all the vital content hiding in Personal Publishing+Correspondence+Wine&Dine). Any old new content would be of a kind which has never had any (public, yet under-institutionalized) form to fit to, or which has been private for all of history, but can now come out and take a public form, to be this time and age's information forte. Content, to be fitted to information exchange, needs us designing performance, a labor of love.
28 January 2000
20000128 link unlikely
Every morning upon returning from taking R+r to school and school bus respectively (the bus passes by R's school when we get there, so I drop r on the bus, which I then either pass by or meet on my way back), I bring Coco the horse two buckets of water and set free our cock and duck. Taking the water from the source to the stable I am followed closely by Pootjes, the cat, who ever once in a while ventures into the stable and close to Coco, but more often hides in the straw to witness our actions. When I open the pen, the duck immediately, after short on the spot welcome hops, which I dare not imitate, propels from my feet, lifting right in front of me, over the laundry line, landing with a loud quack into the mill's pond. This lift-off, flight and touchdown is a three second miracle. Then she follows you if you walk around the pond, taking off and landing for short stretches to peddle back and forth close to you. Even when she stays nights away, so far she returns to the household. Over the second or third coffee I sit at my computer and over my connecting Eudora I stare at all the Paridae activity on the veranda.
27 January 2000
'not since Superman died'
Michael Bakhtin Sources (www.shef.ac.uk/uni/academic/A-C/bakh/online.html)
To exchange information you want to find a match out there. Easier said than done, yet information media speculate on matches and matching information for all. Since these media/industries fundamentally still think one-way (oh yes they do) their optimism is not surprising. When I clued 'designing performance' over 'designing experience' Paul asked me for some explanation. That's when I only started to give it some more thought.
- With interactive media, a user clicking links or buttons doesn't mean much of a performance to me. It is following up orders. Air guitar. Faux control. Faux skill.
Performance would include some kind of choose/use/control of the _form_ of utterance, preferably some skill, and Bakhtin would add: a 'signature beneath it'. What's the design challenge here? To design a 'possibility space' in which one can leave one's signature? Any public toilet allows that. Indeed you cannot design (=force form upon material) 'voice' with a user, without a proper brainwash.
Designing performance for an artist therefor would mean designing (into his/her utterance) some kind of co-authorship, a dialogue (again we get close to Bakhtin here) which evokes talking back to the media and the author/artist/designer?
26 January 2000
4 color theorem
Four Color Theorem (www.c3.lanl.gov/mega-math/gloss/math/4ct.html)
The Most Colorful Math of All (www.c3.lanl.gov/mega-math/workbk/map/map.html)
Is Dave Home? (www.weblog.com) (all it takes is a typo and you are way out of here)
He had bought a large map representing the sea,
Without the least vestige of land:
And the crew were much pleased when they found it to be
A map they could all understand
"What's the good of Mercator's North Poles and Equators,
Tropics, Zones and Meridian Lines?"
So the Bellman would cry: and the crew would reply,
"They are merely conventional signs!"
"Other maps are such shapes, with their islands and capes!
But we've got our brave Captain to thank`"
(So the crew would protest) "that he's bought us the best -
A perfect and absolute blank!"
(from: Fit the Second, The Bellman's Speech in The Hunting of the Snark
by Lewis Carroll)
25 January 2000
swallow or spit?
inf0Arcadia (dutch) (www.idie.net/infoarcadia)
inf0Arcadia (english) (www.idie.net/infoarcadia/infoarcadia-index-E.html)
The Society of the Spectacle by Guy Debord (www.xchange.anarki.net/~dingo/Situationist/sotscontents.html)
Allan Kaprow links (alpha1.albany.edu/~poetry/kaprow.html)
Fluxus Portal (www.fluxus.org/)
FluxList's Allan Kaprow selected links (www.fluxus.org/FLUXLIST/kaprow.htm)
20000125 encore link spit...
321 definitions of the word 'map', 1649-1996 (www.usm.maine.edu/~maps/essays/andrews.htm)
Map History Index (ihr.sas.ac.uk/maps/mapsindex.html)
Jan Smits' Cartifacts (www.konbib.nl/persons/jan-smits/cartifact/list.html)
(note to self: I found that Mr. Smits is the map curator of the Koninklijke Bibliotheek (Royal Library) in The Hague NL. Had I known this a few days earlier I would have invited him to the inf0Arcadia project's vernissage last Saturday... I will have to contact him anyway for the direction my next project's taking)
Ever expanding Atlas of Cyberspaces (www.geog.ucl.ac.uk/casa/martin/atlas/atlas.html)
Finally, the Universe (www.alexandria.ucsb.edu/other-sites/)
...can't help to do one more: Schlaraffia/Schlaraffenland (www-ub.kfunigraz.ac.at/sosa/karten/schlaraffia.html)
Design for information media is not about designing experience, but all about designing performance. Designing voice. And that, I will test in Ahmedabad.
On January 19-23. Ne quittez pas. With Andrea it was all about mobile nature and the nature of mobility, and health deficiencies (ok, we had the advantage of an 8 hour car ride together); with Kristi it was about painful arms and visa bluff and Schlemmer lunch; with Hans about 'here's looking at you kid' (I haven't deleted the photos yet); with Rini about pathos and precedent; Joke and I kept bumping into each other wherever I went; with all the others, most notably inf0Arcadia curators Maarten and Ronald, who did a tremendous job, I spent far too little time, while we all did art and food and drinks and got kinda sorta lost. So I twice drove through Amstelveen full stretch, to get to the Nieuwe Meer where A. and myself stayed with H. and R. Typical map/territory corruption. Returning home, Amsterdam-St.Germain-des-Bois on the Sunday was a 6.5 hour grand slam.
the bigger bang?
I can't decide whether the second communication revolution outshines the first: wireless telephony or the Internet, to be truly singular. When they'll finally fully meet, it'll be the end of the world as we know it. This doesn't mean we all should WAP our asses over to designing the next big small screen, as I suggested recently. In a few more years those mobile, wireless connected interfaces will have all the sophistication today our desktops have. And hopefully enough computation under the hood. A wireless Internet, connecting mobilepoint-to-mobilepoint, meaning connecting live humans instead of dead places, is the final empowerment. Imagine what a toy like that would afford.
Information Ageto be anything else than the Society of the Spectacle x.x and a monitoring authority (governmental or corporate, pick yours) on top of thatshould provide equal information access (content), equal connectivity (bandwidth) and equal computation (intelligence) at all nodes: with every individual connectionultimately wireless. All this from let's say, age 4. To keep it real and playful and meaningful and slightly dangerous at the same time.
Unless the Information Age allows every man to be an information provider it is not the revolution most of us enthusiastically take it for. The industry knows this. So repeat after me. I shall inform. This is not about being informed, it's me over the counter.
Information is no act of God. Designing information means designing a new habit, a reflex, new human nature. Do I hear post-human, trans-human? It is as with post-modern. Why suffer the academic qualifications of the flow of life? I know why, but we have to allow ourselves to forget, from time to time. To un-remember.
- In the long run, criticism and commentary as we know them may be unnecessary. During the recent 'age of analysis' when human activity was seen as a symbolic smoke screen that had to be dispelled, explanations and interpretations were in order. But nowadays the modern arts themselves have become commentaries and may forecast the postartistic age. They comment on their respective pasts (...)
The most important short-range prediction that can be made has been implied over and over again in the foregoing; that the actual, probably global, environment will engage us in an increasingly participational way. The environment will not be the Environments we are familiar with already: the constructed fun house, spook show, window display, store front, and obstacle course. These have been sponsored by art galleries and discotheques. Instead, we'll act in response to the given natural and urban environments such as the sky, the ocean floor, winter resorts, motels, the movement of cars, public services, and the communication media...
(from Allan Kaprow, Essays on the Blurring of Art and Life)
I love that last list: the way it 'deranges' from the sky to communications media is brilliant! It's what I do for a life. It's what's happening.
listening to: the Blue Tits on the Frozen Veranda (only available locally)
reading: Allan Kaprow, Essays on the Blurring of Art and Life
24 January 2000
Added to 18 January. Made my flight reservation for Ahmedabad online with a French dotcom, Travelprice. Can't believe I'm actually going. This seems so exotic, seen from the Moulin. From Amsterdam, AMD for short, Schiphol International Airport, the global village was one stop. Now I really have to go figure. But I'll go there a richer man. Like butchering my own chickens meant steeply raising my meat consciousness, leaving on a trip to a traditional culture from a traditional culture seems to make total sense. Come back for my impressions half February.
19-23 January 2000
off the grid
St.Germain-des-Bois, Paris, Amsterdam, The Hague, Drechtsteden, The Hague, Amsterdam, St.Germain-des-Bois
Been gone fact finding. Just returned. More facts soon.
18 January 2000
division of labor
National Institute of Design, Ahmedabad, India (www.nid.edu/main.htm)
The Eames ('India') Report (www.nid.edu/C_R_Eames_Report.htm) (courtesy Calamondin)
Ahmedabad dotcom (www.ahmedabad.com)
They who work selfishly for results are miserable.
When G. worked in Jakarta in the early 90s, Sungkana was their driver. One day soon after I had arrived for my first visit (on the way from the airport I couldn't stop laughing, probably to cope with culture shock, and relief that I had just survived a 20 something hour flight, much to the amusement of Sungkana who kept asking G. what it was all about) I went for a tour in the city with him. We drove around, dictionaries on the dashboard, while he spoke some English and introduced me to everyday Bahasa, which as a preparation I had studied for half a year in Amsterdam, with Ms. Tan.
At some point in the afternoon I inquired with him whether we should return. I was supposed to be back at 4, when G. and company needed the car, and S., for a business trip. His reply made a lot clear on this topic which for us, conscious post-colonial employers, was a hard one: how to relate to the people who work for you, with you, especially those who are in the household. It was none of his business whether we should return to the house or not, he politely informed me. I should put the question differently and ask him what time it was, for example, and how much time he thought it would take to return. His responsibility was to get me where I wanted to go at the time when I wanted to go there, to avoid traffic jams and other unpleasantnesses of the mega metropolis, and generally: drive, safe and smooth and smart. Selamat Datang to the former Dutch colonies. Lessons learned.
Somehow I am repeatedly reminded of this specific introduction to work relations. It seems to discard a lot of idées reçus. What did I learn that I still try to use today?
I hope to test this next month in Ahmedabad, at the NID National Institute of Design, with Doors on Tour. Judith pointed me to the Eames' 'India Report', in which they describe the conditions and challenges of the design institute. It has these introductory lines from the Bhagavad Gita:
- ask the right questions in every situation
- only ask people to do what you cannot (better), or do not want to do yourself (in both cases be open and clear about why you ask them to do what you ask them to do)
- added expertise is added value
- You have the right to work but for the work's sake only; you have no right to the fruits of work. Desire for the fruits of work must never be your motive in working. Never give way to laziness, either. Perform every action with your heart fixed on the Supreme Lord. Renounce attachment to the fruits. Be even-tempered in success and failures, for it is this evenness of temper which is meant by Yoga. Work done with anxiety about results is far inferior to work done without such anxiety, in the calm of self-surrender. Seek refuge in the knowledge of Brahman. They who work selfishly for results are miserable.
17 January 2000
World Economic Forum, Davos, 2000: The Time to Make a Difference (184.108.40.206/davos.nsf/Documents/Home+-+Annual+Meeting+-+Articles+-++Make+a+difference/)
The information industry's first unrecognized therefor unanticipated therefor hidden yet with those in the know arrogantly underestimated real big problem is not going to be information have-nots (the new economy will not allow this to happen), but Information Give-Nots: those who
for some more or less valid or odd reason, because their position outside the 'markets' and/or their ethical/political/cultural convictions keep them out of the loop.
- are technologically not fully enhanced to give (most of us, for a long time coming)
- are intelligently not fully informed to give (most of us, per se, but learning helps)
- are not allowed to give (still quite some of us, and a lot of us in less democratic/mercantile political or religious systems)
- refuse to give (some of us, too little of us, out of ignorance?)
If connections will not be fully symmetrical, if politics will not be distributed, if power will not be shared, if the means of production (connectivity and computational power!) are unevenly divided, if critical education is not available, the information society will never happen. We'll be stuck in the spectacle forever. Irony. Think of all the speculation, planning, wheeling and dealing that will either go bust or never ship. What did not happen but was predicted 5 years ago? 2 years ago? Who's complaining about tomorrow? Contrary to popular belief, tomorrow hasn't started two weeks ago. Stocks may hit the fan, Y2K may have been a hoax, Dave Winer may be our best man Dave in Davos 'to make a difference' (sort of 'let's have fun', seriously...) with the '10 websites that are going to change the world'with all due respect, all this is no evidence whatsoever that we are going in the right direction, even in some direction, any direction at all, other than consensus.
- The related challenge brought by the new realities of the 21st century is to redefine the content and the modalities of a new partnership between government, business and leaders of civil society in creating a new paradigm of governance at the national as well international level. If the consensus today is on "small government", on governments disengaging themselves from economic activity, in what areas and according to what safeguards can self-regulation by industry provide the most efficient answer to some of the most sensitive issues raised by, for instance, the explosion of e-business?
(from The Time to Make a Difference, Davos World Economic Forum, 2000)
16 January 2000
look at them twin chihuahuas fighting over a two-pin-headed ballerina music box doll... how's that for appetite?
Chronological Bibliography on Color Theory (www.fadu.uba.ar/sicyt/color/bib1.htm)
Witold Gombrowicz Home Page (www.creative.net/~alang/lit/Gombrowicz.sht)
Mail is coming back to me in spurts in the early morning. Darn is.nl, give me back some steady network speed (I know it's the week-end... not in the Internet economy it isn't!). What bothers me most is the Infodesign Café-L gone near-flame berzerk over a James Souttar's dinosaur rants: His Holy Grumpyness, none of my business indeed. But it does clog my in-box. At times of slow throughput it's a shame. I'm needy for the personal stuff to get through! Give way Souttar and critics! You're a pain in the box... (actually below a certain connection speed you would like to have the possibility of filtering out certain promiscuous lists...). Speed filtering I have never heard about, but it wouldn't that be smart!
Feed the hungry? The appalling thing about art is that it shouldn't take hunger into consideration. You don't care about hunger, you produce food. This is not about the others' appetite, but about your own. Your appetite is a must discharge. You have to study form, like tale telling from intestines or excrement viewing. I gave up on content since I read the Dominique de Roux/Witold Gombrowicz 1968 conversations. Content happens. Rest assured. Concentrate on form, with 'stubborn nonchalance' (WG). Spill on the hungry.
form follows feed
Needless to say, today we care about feeds. I'm not sure whether new media invite the contemplation of what we are fed. Is discretion a temper, a quality that can be invested in new media, as it is in old? Will some do, others not, in any generation?: allow themselves the necessary distance to concentrate on form, without being formal. Discretion is the motor of Eros. How to play on temptation. How to play on appetite, not hunger.
color me hungry
If it is color you are hungry for there is a bibliography to be checked. http://www.fadu.uba.ar/sicyt/color/bib1.htm: the Chronological Bibliography on Color Theory.
Mere title reading wets the palate: Ars magna lucis et umbrae (Athanasius Kircher, 1646); Traité de la lumière (Christian Huygens, 1690); Versuch und Beobachtungen über die Farben des Lichts (Christian Ernst. Wünsch, 1792); A new elucidation of colours, original, prismatic and material (James Sowerby, 1809); Theoria colorum physiologica (Arthur Schopenhauer, 1830). etc.
And these are just the theories.
15 January 2000
pas de deux, 1967, by Norman McLaren
Norman McLaren Biography (www.onf.ca/E/2/6/1/biomcla.html)
I can't be reached by mail this week-end, or can I?.
When today it appeared that NQPAOFU's crawling speed was caused by its host moving servers, I decided to kickstart nqpaofu.com. This site is hosted at www.llamacom.com, like is eg. Alamut.
barcodes on the wall
NQPAOFU slow and my mail not coming in unsettled me. I tried to have a normal day and behave to G. and the kids, but didn't succeed. I had withdrawal symptoms and spent two hours in bed in the afternoon. When I woke up around 4 I noticed a jumpy light pattern on the wallpaper. It was caused by the reflection of the sun in the Beuvron, projected through the French shutters. It looked like a nervous scratchy vertical bar code, no, 6 of them, long ones too. Or a visualization of sound, a voice, in the pattern's uneven light. It suddenly reminded me of the early work of Norman McLaren.
McLaren's Caprice (1949) and Blinkity Blank (1954) I saw when I was in my teens. The technique made a huge impression on me. I started scratching and inking my 8mm footage and pioneered attic animation with salt, egg shells and ink, drawing paper, in black and white. Moving patterns. I took my sister's miniature wooden toy train and drove it through an apple. I loved animation. I loved the material side of it, thought of it as the true miracle of animation: to make appear inanimate objects and material alive. Scratches on celluloid, ink and salt on paper, lit by a desk lamp and photographed with a wind-up Kodak double 8mm (16mm film, after processing cut into two 8mm strips) camera, that my grandfather had given me as a present. It had no single frame position, so I just clicked it at 2-3 frames per exposure. Table top animation. A big mess to clean up after a long shooting night. Dramatic, graphic images, long shadows, projected from one of those rattling mechanical devices that more often than not ate your art for lunch.
With the network slow speed not improving I phoned Paul, who read me my host's news blurb, on moving their servers, from his screen. I like his Dutch pronunciation. It calmed me down. I started looking into my collected .html files off line. I copied NQPAOFU to a new folder, repairing links, to prepare for nqpaofu.com. I cooked a real good pasta carbonara for the family but still didn't behave normal. G. has a diary, I know: glad it's not online. Now we are sitting face-to-face and speak again. She's writing a story to her family. We laugh at her shortsighted peering at the screen. She's seen too much of mine. I confessed to Paul that it is a real addiction, and he agreed. I do not like the idea.
The Tuning of the World, by R. Murray Schafer, is probably the title I was looking for 7 January (last lines). I can buy a used copy at $50. Anyone knows of a cheaper copy? Or would this be the price to pay?
listening to: Split Enz
reading: Nabokov, Speak, Memory
memory deep added on top
mapping the Michelin men doing Michelin things on the Michelin maps drove me to study maps in the back of the car, when we were traversing France in the sixties.
organization the obsessive cleaning of a work space, before and during the work process before finishing the job: sweeping the floor while sawing, arranging the tools according to ever changing principles and preferences, while needing them, etc. Ending by not doing the actual work at hand, but cleaning and reorganizing and rearranging its conditions.
politics sitting on the shoulders of others at the first anti Vietnam war demonstrations
fever laundry fight on the pale lit landing
communication bass resonance in the snare drum
ivresse de memoire
light camera obscura on wheels, 1971: this flower merchant's truck, on the Hamburg-Groningen trajectum, returning with Reinhard Muskens from my first holiday without my parents. We travel in the dark body of the truck for hours. The upside-down German landscape rolling by on the wall boggles us. We hitch-hiked as high up as Trondheim, Norway, and saw the midsummernight sun, but sent our last postcards from Tivoli Copenhagen, not to upset the family.
real projections into spaces
nature not to venture into, but which itself invades other spaces, eg. as light or smell in the house, branches and leaves and flowers and weeds and mud taken inside, the wood fire, sticks and stones. Japanese gardening? Releasing that nature into our nature. Opening the car window at the top of the hill, to take in the panorama, only for a few seconds. Breath and drive on.
gesture palm leaf, Bali, like finger-dance.
note to self
is the sequel to NQPAOFU (1998-1999 archive), the weblog.
Later nqpaofu.com will host the entire publication to date.
The current site serves as a sand box since 15 January 2000.
Welcome. There's no need to scroll down, it is empty.
I needed all the <BR>s for the anchored lines to show up at the top of the screen,
must link (http://...)
bovine inversus (www.bovineinversus.com)
synthetic zero (www.syntheticzero.com)
direct search (gwis2.circ.gwu.edu/~gprice/direct.htm)
inf0Arcadia NL (www.idie.net/inf0Arcadia)
inf0Arcadia E (www.idie.net/inf0Arcadia/infoarcadia-index-E.html)
Le Moulin du Merle (lemoulindumerle.com)
I DIE for change (idie.net)