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
Bob Stepno § The structure of journalism today / 2014-03-10 18:42:32


Speaking of Kevin Kelly, I had basically taken for granted that one of us had already posted his call for more visions of the near future, given our recent spate of near-futurism. It appears no one had. Well, that’s fixed.

November 22, 2008 / Uncategorized


Two phrases from Kelly’s post that deserve to become common lingo:

1) the alien present (from KK)

2) the McLuhan ramp (from Jaron Lanier, linked in the comments)

In fact, I think we should start a band called The McLuhan Ramp.

Our first album will be called The Alien Present.

Matt sings; Tim, you’re on drums.

Robin plays cello.

I’d never heard of this McLuhan Ramp before so I went looking for an explanation; the best one I’ve found is here. Jaron Lanier is putting my “never trust a white guy with dreads” axiom to the test.

Hey, good find! It’s funny how a “secondary source” — a smart summary or synthesis — can so often be better than the original. Especially when it comes to actually understanding the argument.

At the Long Now talks here in SF, they have a debate format that’s one of my favorite things ever: Two people. They take turns presenting their case. But after I’m done with my part, you, as my “opponent”, have to summarize it back to me — to my satisfaction! Only then are you free to do your part — which I then summarize back to you, to your satisfaction.

It’s a kind of forced empathy, a gap-bridging… it’s strange & marvelous to imagine the same format being applied to, say, the presidential debates.

The snarkmatrix awaits you

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