I swore I wouldn’t shop this year. Surely, the gifts I’d like to give couldn’t be found in a place called Uniqlo. And yet, I’m embarrassed to report, I actually went there ~ all the way to Thirty Fourth Street no less ~ and I went TWICE. Believe me, I was not alone.
So, first of all, Suzzy Roche has a blog; second of all, it’s on Tumblr, third of all she wrote a post about Christmas and it’s really sweet. (Y’all know Suzzy Roche, right?)
Faruk Ateş posts again on the subject of sexism and inclusiveness in tech industries, and as usual makes some really important points. See also: his May post on the subject, as well as this one from Dylan C. Lathrop on GOOD.
In the period between 1975 and 1979, the Agency convened a rare series of conversations between an eccentric cast of characters representing a wide range of perspectives within the contemporary social, political and cultural milieu. The ARPANET Dialogues is a serial document which archives these conversations. Even more unusual perhaps was the specific circumstances of the conversation: taking advantage of recent developments in telecommunications technology, the conversation was conducted via an instant messaging application networked by computers plugged into ARPANET, the United States Department of Defense’s experimental computer network. All participants in the conversation were given special access to terminals connected to ARPANET, many of them located in US military installations or DOD-sponsored research institutions around the world.
The following transcript presents an excerpt of a conversation between Governor Ronald Reagan of California, artist Marcel Broodthaers, cultural anthropologist Edward Said, and actress Jane Fonda. The session was moderated by Maeve O’Reilly. Please note that the respective computer terminals for each participant were identified by the names of gods from Roman mythology and have here been changed to reflect the actual names of the participants. The application, still in its early stage of development, had limited syntax capability, thus punctuation was limited to the full stop.
RONALD REAGAN: Im not clear on the point of this exercise.
MARCEL BROODTHAERS: Well I think we are testing the possibilities of this device.
MARCEL BROODTHAERS: I understand it is to be launched much more widely soon. I suspect Jane will be the celebrity endorsement.
EDWARD SAID: Marcel I hope there is more to it than that.
RONALD REAGAN: OK but why us.
MARCEL BROODTHAERS: Well think about the implications. Imagine what something like this would offer to the world.
EDWARD SAID: What are the implications. This will revolutionize they way people do business. Culture perhaps. Someone from Japan can have a conversation with someone from California. What about China.
RONALD REAGAN: Wouldnt you rather pick up the phone and call.
RONALD REAGAN: All this damned typing.
MARCEL BROODTHAERS: You get faster.
EDWARD SAID: Yes I would but if it were to be cheap and inexpensive.
EDWARD SAID: Free.
RONALD REAGAN: Free. Well who pays for it in the end though.
MARCEL BROODTHAERS: The people of course.
RONALD REAGAN: You mean taxes.
MARCEL BROODTHAERS: I assume you are in a military communication centre like me. Both of you.
EDWARD SAID: But for a young man or woman in Sri Lanka this might help them voice their ideas to people like a university professor from Michigan or an architect from Bahia.
EDWARD SAID: The rich should pay.
RONALD REAGAN: I do see the value in this tool.
MARCEL BROODTHAERS: How do you think these kinds of stronger connections with the world will benefit you Ronald.
RONALD REAGAN: Personally. Oh maybe I could keep in better touch with people I know who are far away. But I prefer face to face conversations to really do my work.
RONALD REAGAN: Seems like an interesting business opportunity.
MARCEL BROODTHAERS: And what about for your citizens in California?
EDWARD SAID: But if a student of mine wanted to go to Iran they wouldnt have the money but they could discuss issues with Iranian students using this thing.
MARCEL BROODTHAERS: Students I think could benefit from this greatly.
EDWARD SAID: Yes I can imagine.
MARCEL BROODTHAERS: Vast networks of students.
EDWARD SAID: Networks. What does that mean really.
MARCEL BROODTHAERS: Youth must be provided with the means to grasp this opportunity.
RONALD REAGAN: Sounds a bit out of control to me.
EDWARD SAID: Sounds suspicious.
MARCEL BROODTHAERS: The young will grasp its potential in a way we couldnt imagine.
“Dystopia has become an integral part of culture, and through the medium of television it has entered our homes and become a part of every domestic landscape.”—Dan Friedman: Radical modernism (New Haven and London: Yale University Press, 1994).
There, you’ve been summoned (as have I). I’ve been wondering for awhile about the overabundance of revivals, and in particular, the general lack of curiosity that goes into type design these days. No more Herbert Bayer, no old-school Zuzana Licko—those are extreme examples of experimental type design, but what about the work of Evert Bloemsma on faces like Balance?
I’ve had ideas floating around forever that I haven’t quite “gotten to” producing. I guess now is the time then?
“Whenever I write a novel, I have a strong sense that I am doing something I was unable to do before. With each new work, I move up a step and discover something new inside me. I don’t see this novel as a departure, but I do think it has been a major step in my career. Formally speaking, this is the first full-length novel I have written from beginning to end in the third person.”—
“At Koenji Station, Tengo boarded the Chuo Line inbound rapid-service train. The car was empty. He had nothing planned that day. Wherever he went and whatever he did (or didn’t do) was entirely up to him. It was ten o’clock on a windless summer morning, and the sun was beating down. The train passed Shinjuku, Yotsuya, Ochanomizu, and arrived at Tokyo Central Station, the end of the line. Everyone got off, and Tengo followed suit. Then he sat on a bench and gave some thought to where he should go. ‘I can go anywhere I decide to,’ he told himself. ‘It looks as if it’s going to be a hot day. I could go to the seashore.’ He raised his head and studied the platform guide.”—The first paragraph of Haruki Murakami’s “Town of Cats,” published in this week’s issue. (via newyorker)
Note: I’ll try to make sure that I don’t only post about my usual topic of “social good” on here, but it’ll be impossible to resist posting interesting things that relate to both media and current events.
To prove my commitment to diversity of content the next post will be anime-related.
One might think the surplus of images like this one of Muslims gathered in prayer a little intrusive. I wonder about this sometimes. The harmony and peace of it is just so beautiful it’s hard not to want to see. It makes me wish the US saw more scenes like this in person.
“I feel sorry to say I have no favorite place in Beijing. I have no intention of going anywhere in the city. The places are so simple. You don’t want to look at a person walking past because you know exactly what’s on his mind. No curiosity. And no one will even argue with you.”—"Ai Weiwei on Beijing’s nightmare city." Chinese activist-artist Ai Weiwei ( 艾未未 ) describes social misery in the capital of China in an article published two days ago through Newsweek. Ai had been imprisoned earlier in the year, and has been largely forbidden from communicating with the world outside of China. He is apparently defying that restraint through this article and through accounts on Twitter and Google+.