24 March 2018

21 March 2018

A case of evil vs. stupid

The problem is not that Cambridge Analytica used your Facebook data to cater to someone else's purposes. The problem is that you were inconsiderate enough to voluntarily give your data to Facebook in the first place.


19 March 2018

Is established art intrisically konservative?

Art lives of breaking the rules. Or so they say...

I propose a more appropriate assertion:

"Art lives of breaking the rules. Inside its established framework!"

True, the transgression of limits has always been a part of art, at least as long as art defined itself as educational. From Brecht, who spelled it right out "Glotzt nicht so romantisch" (Don't gawk so romantically), to Koon's Banality Series. If you don't shock, you don't rock.

But even the boldest crossing of frontiers has almost always happened inside an established medium. Theatre plays do not replace actors with cacti. Painters may replace canvas with plastic but they don't relocate to the cyberspace. Novels are now being published digitally, but they still consist of letters not smells.

In other words, the rooms are being redecorated, but the floorplan stays the same.

Maybe it is because artists have something to loose. Be it reputation, money or patronage. Every renowned artist must cater to the expectations of the audience. Either the existing one or a new one. Art that is too far ahead of its time is art considered only in hindsight.

16 March 2018

On the impossibility of writing adequate technical documentation

A developer enters the office:

"We have sold our customer a sausage 1.0. We need you to write down the recipe by next Tuesday.

Just to help you get started:

I had a slice of the sausage for breakfast this morning. It was light brown with some darker parts. It was about this thick. [indicates between 5 and 38 mm with his fingers]

Unfortunately, I don't have a real sausage or even a picture at this point, but you are welcome to go to the kitchen. There we have a glass of jam. Use that as a reference until we come up with a proper drawing.

By the way: Our prototype sausage is made from pork, but the customer version will probably consist of horse meat. We are also discussing shifting to a fully vegetarian product. The final decision will be made in Q3.

To give you a heads-up: The sales departement just came back from the tradeshow. They have sold 5 million pieces of sausage 2.0. We need to document that asap. Development will start in March 2021.

Get moving!"