The murmur of the snarkmatrix…

August § The Common Test / 2016-02-16 21:04:46
Robin § Unforgotten / 2016-01-08 21:19:16
MsFitNZ § Towards A Theory of Secondary Literacy / 2015-11-03 21:23:21
Jon Schultz § Bless the toolmakers / 2015-05-04 18:39:56
Jon Schultz § Bless the toolmakers / 2015-05-04 16:32:50
Matt § A leaky rocketship / 2014-11-05 01:49:12
Greg Linch § A leaky rocketship / 2014-11-04 18:05:52
Robin § A leaky rocketship / 2014-11-04 05:11:02
P. Renaud § A leaky rocketship / 2014-11-04 04:13:09
Jay H § Matching cuts / 2014-10-02 02:41:13

Thanksgiving Thesis

Spurred on by this bit from Kanye West:

On a more sober and reflective afternoon a few days later, sitting in his sparse, modernist New York apartment, West sees little reason to soften or withdraw this claim. That’s the thing about being drunk, he says. You say what you really believe to be true. “People got to look at the concerts, look at the sales, look at the impact, look at the songs, look at the connection with pop culture,” he continues. “I mean, it’s obvious. It’s almost I don’t even need to state it. It’s so true it’s obvious. It’s not even arguable.”

Thesis: We are living in the Age of Audacity. Who are the icons of the era? Steve Jobs. George W. Bush. Kanye West. Google. Hedge funds. Craig Venter. China. All pursuing unapologetically over-the-top ambitions — and sort of, er, succeeding. (I realize the Bush claim is an odd one, and I don’t have time to go into it, but you understand I’m not saying the Bush administration is a success by any measure; I’m just saying they actually did accomplish many of their insane goals.)

Idea in motion. The obvious rejoinder is “yo dude, how ’bout all of human history is the age of audacity?” Think about it… I’ll be back in the morning.

November 20, 2007 / Uncategorized


This is the Age of Ostentatious Audacity. Julius Caesar was pretty audacious, and so was Stravinsky, but you can’t really imagine Albert Einstein giving an interview and saying: “Screw Niels Bohr and Enrico Fermi! Heisenberg’s got nothing on me! Why don’t you try to measure the position and velocity of my balls? You can’t — they warp space and bend light!”

At a certain point in the past, unless you were some kind of god-king, you had to be a little bit self-effacing. Now, even the President talks like he’s in the WWF.

I’m pretty sure you could start a successful web comic based on the premise of a trash-talking Heisenberg, Tim. 🙂

One of my favorite stories is the lecture James Watson gave at Harvard in which he actually referred to Linus Pauling’s second Nobel Prize as “Linus’s peace crap”. But I guess we already knew that Watson belonged to the Age of Ostentatious Audacity (Mixed with Old-fashioned Bigotry).

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