Gonzo futurism

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22 Responses to “Gonzo futurism”

  1. retchdog says:

    it’s worth noting that in high dimensions, perfect hyperspheres themselves become “spiky,” in the sense that they fill less and less of their enclosing hypercube. you can sort of see this; in 1-d, a unit sphere and a unit cube are the same (that is, a line); in 2-d, you have to shave off a little bit from a square to get a circle; in 3-d, you have to shave proportionally more off the cube to get a sphere. and so on. the moral is: don’t just try to be spiky with what you already know; learn more and more things!

  2. gwailo_joe says:

    I kinda like it, but you better keep it hush-hush

    otherwise the masses will subvert it as a catch phrase to sell skinny jeans

  3. Thad Boyd says:

    Weeeeell, that makes me feel a little better about my underemployment as a temp stuck imaging and boxing laptops all day.

  4. angusm says:

    I may be just feeling extra-curmudgeonly today, but that reminds me of nothing so much as marketing-speak. It’s the kind of slick “let’s describe some totally awesome new category that we’ve just made up and tell you that you belong in it so we can sell you crap”. You can just hear the velvet tones of the commercial voiceover artist as you read it.

    “The gonzo futurist is uncompromising in her quest for quality. The gonzo futurist sees opportunity where others see only obstacles. The gonzo futurist demands the maximum from herself and from her wardrobe. The gonzo futurist wears [insert product name here].”

    I’m sure the author’s intentions are good, but to me it looks as if he spent so much time writing ad copy that he’s forgotten how to write something that doesn’t reek of advertorial bullshit.

    • Maria Pranzo says:

      While I can see what you’re saying (and, as you said, you might just be “feeling extra-curmudgenonly today”), I have to wonder if that is at least PARTIALLY because we’re only used to seeing the feminine pronoun used to generalize in advertising.

      It is so uncommon to see the whole of us described in the feminine, unless a woman is being SOLD something.  Replace all the “she”s with “he”s and it automatically feels less like ad-speak.

      • chenille says:

        Not to me, but my reading gets colored by this:

        Don’t become a well-rounded person. Well rounded people are smooth and dull.

        It may have worked for Cory, but when you start out by declaring what kind of people are boring, my mind hears selling image instead of substance.

        • digi_owl says:

          And bending over backwards to not offend is not selling image?

          • chenille says:

            Both trying to please other people, and needing to dismiss the way other people are, are things I wouldn’t consider past image. You should be whatever shape of person suits you, not defined by similarity or opposition to others.

          • digi_owl says:

             @boingboing-25d11f8e1a305f5eaf4caa32877882f3:disqus so a milder version fo the quote then? Something like “do not be afraid of being spiky, but do not be in their face about it”?

    • Finnagain says:

       Same here. That was a tough slog.

    • Jeremy Mesiano-Crookston says:

      That’s exactly right. It also amuses me that every source is drawn from 2011, as if the author’s research was a single google scholar search, arranged by date, from which they drew a single quote.

  5. Let’s stop making this more than it is. It’s just a statistically high number of Asperger’s type folks who wish to establish their own cultural identity like with the Atheists against Bush.

    It’s justifiable if we keep our observations less sensationalist. We can talk about the “other world citizen” inspiration and the social differentiation without all of this “futurism” junk.

    The U.S. government and corporations ARE being excessively draconian and unrelenting and acting dangerously fast given the sophistication of our security systems, cryptopgraphy, DNS, etc. There is a threat of media mismanagement which makes vulnerable the average readership. These are real problems. We do not need superheroes to thwart these problems.

    We need to understand that those who can internalize these issues but cannot verbalize or vocalize them to the point which might effect need help in learning how to establish communities. We don’t need “opportunity maximization” we need “go out and tell your goddamn friends to shut down their Facebook accounts.”

    Don’t be hyperbolic and sophistical. Like now, I’m doing something remarkably simply: I’m just wearing a “shut your facebook” shirt in public. We need a gradual process to effecting this change.

    Stop acting like you learned Internet over night.

  6. digi_owl says:

    Hmm, nitroglycerin hand sanitizer.  Is he BBshop developing article awareness?

  7. Teller says:

    The gonzo-futurist sounds unemployed.

    • Bottle Imp says:

      Good thing the file was free. Whole thing sounded like that guy the company hires to tell you to think outside the box, but trying to be “hip to the intertubes.” That said, were I younger and less cynical, I think I would have found some comfort in it. I’d rather this essay gets to ‘em before Ayn Rand.

  8. Nash Rambler says:

    *shrug* Sure, why not.  *holds up cardboard sign* WILL CULTURE JAM FOR FOOD

  9. miasm says:

    meta-nihilistic, consciously-delusional, rigorously-compartmentalised, hyper-self awareness.
    This is either a great big, sarcastic self analysis of participation in the collapse of society or a preening attempt to assuage the modern humans inability to differentiate herself from the collapsing crowd.
    The more that your are differentiated from the sheeple, the more you must rely on their overwhelming, zeitgeist creating, (bad, oh-so-bad) decision-making.
    You must just push all that unwanted consciousness deep, deep down into the gut and rely on it’s shitty input alone.
    I happen to be a fan of sarcasm, so I liked this.
    :3

  10. Amelia_G says:

    Well, you and Bruce Sterling are probably right. But I like Terry Pratchett’s idea about the Brownian motion of society rounding off our excrescences.

    Just read tonight in George Dyson’s “Turing’s Cathedral,” which I think you recommended thankyouverymuch, about the prediction ideas developed in the Wiener-Bigelow debomber project of WWII. Including the axiom that predictions “are actually ‘lags’ (functions of the known past) artificially reversed and added to the present value of the function” [Julian Bigelow, interview with Flo Conway and Jim Siegelman, October 30, 1999; p. 147 of the ebook fwiw].

    P.S.: Oh! and the same book states that meteorologists in the past had to rely on reporting that the weather today would be much like yesterday’s, or much like similar weather documented from past years’ observations, and meteorologists are now proud of having moved beyond that. Clearly there remains some utility in the old style.

  11. smallteam says:

    Monetize the eschaton!

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