Tuesday, April 20, 2010

How Minerva Got Her Wreck

Whole lot of everything going on, Best Beloved.

More than ~ what is it, now? Some number we can't hold a significant portion of in our mind's arena? Six billion, the almanacs suggest. More than six billion of us, then: Cleaving the air around this whirling ball of mud, and many of us making things.

From Sheboygan to Shanghai, from Malmö to Mombasa, from Laos to Llanfairpwllgwyngyllgogerychwyrndrobwllllantysiliogogogoch, from ~ well, you get the idea: So many of us, everywhere, and so many of us creating. Or, at least, copying and modifying others' creations, thus commenting on current events and whatever's fueling the zeitgeist; or commenting on what we've just modified; or commenting on our own personal lives; or commenting on the act of creating; or commenting on commenting, sometimes, for fuck's sake.

And sometimes there's no copying or modifying involved at all.
Sometimes it's just commenting.
A lot of the time it's just commenting: Everybody's a critic.

The amount of creating and commenting had been increasing, of course, and its churn-rate accelerating, long before what we worked went digital. Before Tim Berners-Lee set the www to dancing a voodoo hipshake boogie via hypertext transfer protocol, thwarting time and space and joining our globally scattered selves in ways that can still boggle those not born alongside a world built on nothing but nothing and one.

But now? These days, with the weather on the change and the metaverse morphing all territorial in our meatspace wake?

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We are already in a culture in which the cultural logic of information has shattered any comforting notion of order.
Non-linear principles of form, in fact, are the signifier of a culture accustomed to fragmentation and montage. Information
in this environment comes as an array rather than a sequence.

~ Timothy Druckrey, Information, Interactivity, Neurotechnology

* * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * *

Still, barely daunted, we do our damnedest to consider and describe all that we've known in the past, to encompass both the particulars of what we're dealing with now and what, possibly, is left to come in the years before we nuclearly or biologically ragnarok ourselves to mythic smithereens. Some of us, reaching beyond omphaloskepsis, seem drawn to arrange the complex flora of le tout de monde into a single, coherent bouquet ~ nightshade, tansy, triffids and all ~ as if its subsequent presentation would win us the heart of whoever's heart is worth yearning for ... or reward us our own relief. It becomes apparent, though, that to try to singlehandedly wrangle the whole megillah is to court an obsession indistinguishable from madness.

A guy could go all Lovecraftian.
A guy could hallucinate Illuminati among the aspidistras.
A guy could pull a Johnny Truant and start nailing tape measures to the walls.
Jorge Borges, pudding and pi ~ y'know what I'm sayin'?

So what I'm doing here, with this unwieldy device yclept Minerva's Wreck? I'm considering and describing just a few scattered parts of the totality: The parts that come into contact with me, via whatever agency, and which I have the time and desire to go on about. It's a sort of value-added waggle dance (as famously performed by our hymenopteran friends, apis melliflera) potentially leading to your greater edification and entertainment. And ~ inasmuch as one can better understand one's own internal territories by mapping them textually ~ leading to a little edification for me, too.

Your comments, especially, will help with that last part.

Please: Don't hesitate.

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