Archive

The Internet of Damned Things

We have to be aware that when you cre­ate mag­ic or occult things, when they go wrong they become hor­ror. Because we cre­ate tech­nolo­gies to soothe our cul­tur­al and social anx­i­eties, in a way. We cre­ate these things because we’re wor­ried about secu­ri­ty, we’re wor­ried about cli­mate change, we’re wor­ried about threat of ter­ror­ism. Whatever it is. And these devices pro­vide a kind of stop­gap for help­ing us feel safe or pro­tect­ed or what­ev­er.

Selfhood and the Icon

Like mito­sis, a copy has the capac­i­ty for indi­vid­ual muta­tion but does not intrin­si­cal­ly affect its par­ent. A retweet of infor­ma­tion is not a dupli­ca­tion nor a shift in scale. A retweet impacts a struc­tur­al bridge of a net­worked idea, not the intrin­sic idea itself.

Bot Culture and the Myth of the Wacky Inventor

The point being that this isn’t just some ran­dom thing about Rube Goldberg machines, it’s also about changes in art. It’s a broad pat­tern that hap­pens when­ev­er there’s a major tech­no­log­i­cal shift, at least for the last hun­dred years. You get these use­less machines that self‐justify.