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The Conversation #47 — Oliver Porter

To me…we all draw our sat­is­fac­tion from what we our­selves have been able to do with our lives. And if some­body, some gov­ern­ment or some­one else is just giv­ing to me, I’m not going to be a hap­py per­son.

The Next Social Contract Opening Keynote: Senator Elizabeth Warren

Just as this coun­try did a hun­dred years ago, it’s time to rethink the basic bar­gain between work­ers and com­pa­nies. As greater wealth is gen­er­at­ed by new tech­nol­o­gy, how can we ensure that the work­ers who sup­port the econ­o­my can actu­al­ly share in the wealth?

Douglas Rushkoff WebVisions Portland 2016 Keynote

Google just has to grow. It has to keep grow­ing. But Google grows at its own per­il. Google grew so much that what hap­pened? It out­grew Google. Google had to become what? Alphabet. Now what is Alphabet? Alphabet is not Google. Alphabet is a hold­ing com­pa­ny. So Google’s new busi­ness as Alphabet is to do what? It’s to buy and sell tech­nol­o­gy com­pa­nies. So, once a com­pa­ny becomes just too big to flip any­more, it becomes a flip­per of oth­er com­pa­nies.

Cyborg Anthropology and the Evaporation of the Interface

When you look at your online pro­file, is that real­ly you? It’s a rep­re­sen­ta­tion of you that can be act­ed on when you’re not there. But where do you end and the machine begins? The thing is that humans and tech­nol­o­gy have coe­volved with each oth­er over time, being very very cocre­ative. We have sur­vived because of tech­nol­o­gy, and tech­nol­o­gy has sur­vived because of us.

Maira Kalman RISD 2013 Commencement Keynote Address

We live between despair and hope. No one knows why we are here, and noth­ing makes sense. Don’t for­get that. You could ask your­self, What is the point?” until you go crazy, lit­er­al­ly. So, the start­ing point is to not know. And then to pro­ceed.

Bruce Mau RISD 2014 Commencement Keynote Address

Work on what you love. This is such an easy thing to say, and it seems so obvi­ous. What else should we work on? What else could we work on? And yet the prob­lem of align­ing our pas­sion and our pro­duc­tion, our love and our work, remains one of the great life chal­lenges that we face as artists, as design­ers, and as cit­i­zens.

Working on ENIAC: The Lost Labors of the Information Age

The largest part of the ENIAC team by far were the peo­ple that were actu­ally build­ing the thing. And it’s inter­est­ing they’ve been for­got­ten by his­tory, because although their job titles were wire­men, tech­ni­cians, and assem­blers, being a busi­ness his­to­rian I looked up the account­ing records, and some­times they spell out the pay­roll. You sud­denly see all the­se women’s names like Ruth, Jane, Alice, Dorothy, Caroline, Eleanor show­ing up.

Ingrid Burrington at Haunted Machines

I think there’s some­thing inter­est­ing about a dis­ci­pline that his­tor­i­cal­ly is tied to polit­i­cal intrigue, to secre­cy, being linked into this debate over what is good mag­ic or true divine mag­ic, and what is the work of demons. And I think there is some­thing inter­est­ing to be said about the moment we are in right now and how states them­selves kind of iden­ti­fy and invent exis­ten­tial threats to jus­ti­fy their own behav­ior.

Photo of Ian Bogost during presentation,with a slide displaying the word "Fun" in large letters.

Fun

What if we arrive at fun not through expand­ing the cir­cum­stances that we’re in in order to make them less wretched, but actu­al­ly by embrac­ing the wretched­ness of the cir­cum­stances them­selves? What if, in a lit­er­al way, fun comes from impov­er­ish­ment, from wretched­ness?

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