Pages:

“The brilliant stories that make use of the possibilities of digital technology will fall victim to…”

“The brilliant stories that make use of the possibilities of digital technology will fall victim to the obsolescence of that technology. And that’s okay; lots of what I experience here – online – is ephemeral, just as all the comics I’ve given away and traded in or sold have been lost to me. But I keep the issues of comics I think will matter to me, that I love. I need to get better at doing the same for the things I love online.”

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Pages lost | Matthew Sheret

Popular thinking suggests that whatever exists online stays online forever. That depends on what the value of forever is, really. Forever could be just long enough for that inappropriate Facebook photo to tank your chance at a new job or relationship. But with the rate at which networks, platforms, standards and even the very devices we use to access the web change, forever may not be as long as it used to be. Something to think about when producing work for the web.

Also, see issues around curating digital art.

Feb 17

notmattsiegel: Prompts



notmattsiegel:

Prompts

Feb 16

The Moment (by songhyunju) “When people face an absurd…



The Moment (by songhyunju)

"When people face an absurd situation in Korea, they say "It makes no word.". This project is about the absurd moment and creates no word out of words. In the project the Latin alphabet is conceived of as the abstract geometry. The letters are disassembled and transformed by spinning as a new visual artistic medium."

concept & visual programming by : Song, Hyun Ju sound & sequence programming by : Bae, Mi Lyoung

Feb 15

“The post-postcolonial character is open to exploring influences outside expected norms, and he…”

“The post-postcolonial character is open to exploring influences outside expected norms, and he demands the freedom to stitch those influences together as he sees fit. He embraces the multiple: “Do you see my colours, my dazzling terror?” the poet challenges. Yet, at the same time, he realizes that his brash experimentations—particularly those requiring a move away from the Caribbean landscape—inspire a problematic kind of performativity. “Watch my style, my chalkface charade, rude / work harvesting hymns. Break way. Look good,” he boasts (48). These lines suggest that, if the tristesse of the postcolonial character lies in his unintended mimicry, the tristesse of the post-postcolonial character lies in his self-conscious masquerade. What prevents his masquerade from becoming wholly disingenuous, however, is his understanding that he is permitted to wear multiple masks, just as he is permitted to speak in multiple tongues. Identity need not involve identification with one nation.”

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Post-Postcolonial? - Stephen Narrain on Christian Campbell’s ‘Running the Dusk’.

Also: “In the post-postcolonial framework, a relationship to a single place is often rendered impractical due to social, cultural, or family dynamics. Campbell’s post-postcolonial characters are comfortable, therefore, with citizenship in a suspended space, an experimental state of heterogeneity, ambiguity, and uncertainty—a self-conscious process of constant becoming.”

Feb 14

“I think memory is the most important asset of human beings. It’s a kind of fuel; it burns and it…”

“I think memory is the most important asset of human beings. It’s a kind of fuel; it burns and it warms you. My memory is like a chest: There are so many drawers in that chest, and when I want to be a fifteen-year-old boy, I open up a certain drawer and I find the scenery I saw when I was a boy in Kobe. I can smell the air, and I can touch the ground, and I can see the green of the trees. That’s why I want to write a book.”

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Haruki Murakami (via apoetreflects)

Consider alongside yesterday’s thought on time and investment in creative process. Life breeds experience; experience is (or can be) fuel for creative work.

Feb 13

Some musing on creative work… Time is our basic raw…



Some musing on creative work…

Time is our basic raw material. Time is functionally infinite (from our perspective) but OUR time is limited, hence the boundary around it. Focus determines how we make use of our time. Only some of our time is functionally available (see Cal Newport and his theory of time boxing etc). Some of our time will be given over to maintaining “state” (sleep, health, socialising, spiritual/religious observance). Whatever’s left is the time we have available to “work”, hence the boundary around focus within time. Focus helps us to make best use of a given amount of time.

As creative freelancers, we work for different reasons from many other workers. Yes, we have bills to pay, and having money affords us more time to do our real work in relation to the time that’s spent meeting the costs of living. Our real work is to create products or experiences. In this way, we convert time into meaning. The ideal nature of the meaning we create is profound, i.e. valuable to people more than just ourselves. This is our true currency.

Feb 12

I’ve played with a number of online…



I’ve played with a number of online “platforms” for creative writing that happened to cater for poets, among others. I haven’t yet explored PoetryZoo deeply (insert allusion to petting the animals here), but on the surface at least, it’s a handsome project dedicated to poetry, which already puts it heads above other contenders.

Primate (the web agency) have done a very good job, partly bankrolled by Creative Scotland and Scottish Enterprise, and it’s a joy to see something so well-designed in this space. Poets can store a body of work onsite, managing successive drafts before “publishing” — either as individual poems or as collections. Poems can also be published to on-site anthologies. Work can be tagged for easy categorisation, and linked to off-site video or audio. Poets can cluster together in groups and comment on each others work.

After a surface skim of what the platform have to offer, I’m left with a few questions that may well be answered by deeper investigation, but otherwise point to how PoetryZoo could develop as it goes on. I’ve yet to explore the social functionality that the site offers— as far as I can see, users can comment on “published” poems, but I haven’t yet seen a way to invite feedback on unpublished drafts. Also, the platform suffers from a similar design issue as early e-reading, whereby all text is rendered through a uniform typography. That kind of typographic consistency is necessary for the sanity of any site, but has the effect of rendering a body of content in a single visual voice, which can have a deadening effect. I’d be really excited if the site allowed image uploads as headers or thumbnails for poems, so authors could submit not only abstract images that suit a poem’s theme or tone, but pictures of drafts in the author’s own handwriting, which may well humanise the wall of poems and collections you’re presented with when exploring the site.

Minimalism is currently popular for text editors, and PoetryZoo certainly stays on-trend— the canvas for writing poems really is very simple, no word processing controls, and while spacing is retained, there’s no support for tabs. You won’t be mothballing your copy of Scrivener any time soon. And how do you export your own poems? An option to “download poem as .txt or .docx” or “export collection as .docx or .pdf” would be a welcome feature.

Speaking of collections, can PoetryZoo collections be easily published as e-books? Or even (Shock! Horror!) are there any plans for conduits to “dead tree” publishing, the same way Flickr facilitates the publishing of photo-books, or the way various third parties offer Instagram prints? An association with Blurb, perhaps, which could also complement PoetryZoo’s business model in a meaningful way? The internet is haunted by the ghosts of semi-popular “good ideas” that fell by the wayside because a) their business models weren’t sustainable, or b) once audience for the site spent enough time engaging with whatever the site’s main offer was, they realised there wasn’t much more going on, and growth stalled. I’d hate to see any of that happen here.

For now, PoetryZoo seems to be a well designed social network for poets, with some real potential for becoming a powerful platform for authoring poetry, building communities around poetry and making that poetry available to wider audiences work, if development and innovation continues. I look forward to its future.

Feb 11

SENSORY FICTION (by Felix) “researchers at MIT – felix heibeck,…



SENSORY FICTION (by Felix)

"researchers at MIT – felix heibeck, alexis hope, julie legault– have developed a wearable device that, when attached to the body, changes the bearer’s physical characteristics — the application of which is used for reading, so that the wearer can feel the excitement, desires and sympathies of the protagonist as they read a tech-connected book. ‘traditionally, fiction creates and induces emotions and empathy through words and images.’ the researchers explain, ‘by using a combination of networked sensors and actuators, the sensory fiction author is provided with new means of conveying plot, mood, and emotion while still allowing space for the reader’s imagination’."

Via (DesignBoom)[http://www.designboom.com/technology/mit-academics-design-book-that-lets-readers-feel-the-protagonists-pain-01-31-2014/]

Feb 10

“The vast accumulations of knowledge—or at least of information—deposited by the nineteenth century…”

“The vast accumulations of knowledge—or at least of information—deposited by the nineteenth century have been responsible for an equally vast ignorance. When there is so much to be known, when there are so many fields of knowledge in which the same words are used with different meanings, when every one knows a little about a great many things, it becomes increasingly difficult for anyone to know whether he knows what he is talking about or not. And when we do not know, or when we do not know enough, we tend always to substitute emotions for thoughts.”

- T. S. Eliot, “The Perfect Critic" (via grandhotelabyss)
Feb 9

“At some point, in other words, there’s no way getting around the necessity to clear your calendar,…”

“At some point, in other words, there’s no way getting around the necessity to clear your calendar, shut down your phone, and spend several hard days trying to make sense of the damn proof.”

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The Empty Sky Paradox: Why Are Stars (in Your Professional Field) So Rare? - Study Hacks - Cal Newport

Alternatively known as “how I currently feel.” Just trying to get something valuable done.

Feb 8

“This juxtaposition of space and text—each poem in the cycle adheres to the same format—creates…”

“This juxtaposition of space and text—each poem in the cycle adheres to the same format—creates multiple effects. First of all, and by far the simplest of all possible explanations in my mind, would be that open space creates a field for the reader to imagine the absent, roughly two-dimensional, visual surface that triggers the writing. But a far more interesting explanation, made possible by Bleakney’s aesthetic choices, is that the field created by the space allows the speaker to create a three-dimensional absence which she may fill with her own internal weather, a process in which the speaker becomes the painting’s ego, and eventually even a superimposed alter-ego for the painter herself, who remains mostly absent, in terms of fact. Throughout the cycle—other than a reference to her birthplace, we get very little information about the painter herself—but she remains ever-present through the speaker’s entreaties. The speaker evokes Owens directly, or more particularly, the Owens she is in the business of creating”

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“20 PAINTINGS BY LAURA OWENS” BY ELAINE BLEAKNEY | Stitched, Stapled, Bound

Lamenting the fact that this chapbook appears to have sold out. That said, Bleakney’s next collection is out in April. Looking forward to picking up a copy.

Feb 7

“To me that’s not the problem with what books are doing. I don’t think people are trying to convey a…”

“To me that’s not the problem with what books are doing. I don’t think people are trying to convey a message. I think people are just showing off. Writers are trying to show their skill. They’re trying to show off—“I’m a great writer”—and they’re not trying enough to communicate.”

- Sheila Heti
Feb 6

“You have to care… You cannot do superior work if…



"You have to care… You cannot do superior work if you’re indifferent… Otherwise, it’s just a job…"

William Albert Allard on the Passion From Within

Feb 5

Confession Machine | Liat Segal (by Liat Segal) “The Confession…



Confession Machine | Liat Segal (by Liat Segal)

"The Confession Machine prints online texts that fade away as time passes, just like the confession itself. The machine prints on a surface painted with an ultra violate sensitive pigment. While passing over the surface, it turns on and off 16 UV LEDs in a carefully timed sequence, temporarily creating dots and dashes on the surface. Those are added into letters, words and sentences.

"The intimate and revealing printed texts are taken from social networks, showing the lightness of confessions via online channels today. People today willingly share personal details of their lives via the digital medium. At the same time the importance people give to online confessions is small and temporary in its nature. One sees a reviling status, may get excited, like, comment, even share, and forget it. That is the life cycle of an online confession. It is also a paradox as all this personal information now stays on a virtual limbo, forever exposed.

"The Confession Machine uses the technology of repeatable writing using light (developed by the Bloomfield Science Museum Jerusalem) to show the temporary nature and lightheadedness of online confessions. A confession is printed and fades away. A new confession immediately takes our attention. Sometime a confession starts fading ever before the entire sentence was completed."

Feb 4

Openin.gs— shares great first lines from books, poems, articles,…



Openin.gs— shares great first lines from books, poems, articles, songs and movies. Among other things, it’s useful as a source for potential writing prompts.

Feb 3

Mmmm. Mapping Dr King’s ‘I Have a Dream’…



Mmmm. Mapping Dr King’s ‘I Have a Dream’ speech in fine fashion. Next thought: what if this were an interface for a poem?

Feb 2

“Skryf is the mobile writing machine that uses sand to write out the words of poems. The machine was…”

“Skryf is the mobile writing machine that uses sand to write out the words of poems. The machine was adapted from an old CNC milling machine, controlled via laptop, with software that van Bon developed himself. While the device made its debut during Dutch Design Week, van Bon has used it in multiple countries to present the works of famous poets – eternal words present only for a moment, before being swept away by the crowd or the wind.”

- Poetry Made Of Lines Of Sand [That] Disappear Without A Trace [Video] - PSFK
Feb 1

“Just last month, I attended a number of poetry readings. One stands out more than the others, but…”

“Just last month, I attended a number of poetry readings. One stands out more than the others, but not for the reasons you might think. It was at the university where I work. The poet gave some staggering statistics, claiming that in 1950, there were only 100 or so poets publishing in the English language, and today there are over 20,000. This left me wondering, with so many poets out there, why is it so hard to find one that tells me something about my life? Of course, it only took a few minutes to answer the question when this esteemed, award-winning poet delivered his poems. As one of my colleagues would later say, “It was like he ripped down the middle of the newspaper and just read it to us.” I suddenly felt excluded from an elite (or elitist) club. For the next twenty minutes I sat there listening to him wishing I had been closer to the exit. The poet made it a point to tell us one of the poems he read was part of a longer poem he’d been working on since 1975 or something like that. All those years and not one goddamned thing to tell me about my life. In his defense, he gave the disclaimer that only he could understand some of the references because they were personal. Which left me wondering, how much was the college paying this guy? And what were all these young people in the audience supposed to get out of this?”

- » PANIC ON THE STREETS OF POETRY by Clint Margrave Rattle: Poetry for the 21st Century
Jan 24

“I don’t care how shy poets are; I’m sick of their introversion being inflicted on me via their bad…”

“I don’t care how shy poets are; I’m sick of their introversion being inflicted on me via their bad readings. The second you stand up in front of an audience, you owe that audience a well articulated reading–not a performance, but most certainly a presence. Of course this would affect how poetry is written as well. Eloquence and the use of good rhetorical devices instead of syntactical sloppiness and an over reliance on images might start to prevail.”

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Tips for Doing a Poetry Reading

And this comes right around the time I’m starting to think about a set of challenges for Barbican Poets, with their showcase event coming up at the end of March…

Jan 23

“There are two ways to look at your life: what happened to you or what you did.”

“There are two ways to look at your life: what happened to you or what you did.”

- Frank Chimero × Blog
Jan 22