Category Archives: ideas

Some thoughts on mining twitter for art

There was a lot of talk when Cory Archangel published the book above.  Essentially it is a collection of tweets from others tweeting about…well, working on their novel! It’s clever, but it made me think that it is just the beginning of works of arts that could be mined from the colossal amount of tweets each day.  There’s gold in there amongst all the twitter rage and minutiae about people’s day. It deserves better.

Meanwhile, more about that book, here: A Novel Compiled From Crowd Sourced Tweets About Writing A Novel | MAKE.

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Two takes on robots that stem from one fact

Take 1: Over at Make,  A Peek Into the Design of The Robot Anyone Can Afford | MAKE.

Take 2: Over at Kottke is a good post on why we shouldn’t be blase about robots replacing us (Humans need not apply).

The one fact is that as microprocessors get small, cheaper, and faster, the ability to make robots gets easier and cheaper. That means more people can experiment with them, from individuals to corporations. Soon robots will be ubiquitous, just like personal computers and now smart phones are ubiquitous.  And just like now there are fewer and fewer jobs without computers  or smart phones involved, soon there will be few jobs without robots involved.

I don’t think this will result in robots taking all the jobs. My belief is that there will be a mix of robots and people doing work for some time to come, rather than just robots replacing people. But robots in work and play and all aspects of our lives in inevitable and coming soon. (Depending on your work day, you may not see this as a bad thing.)

 

The typical American room, and incidentally, the importance of home decor

This is not a typical American room:

No, not because of the actors in it. It’s not typical because it is interesting. It is packed with things to capture the eye. It is a “typical” room to an art director of a TV show.

To see and think about the typical American (and Canadian) room, I highly recommend this piece, The American Room — The Message — Medium. The author takes a number of YouTube videos to explore the typical American room and what it means. It sounds potentially boring, but I found it thought provoking.

I think home decor is important. The furniture you choose, the pictures you hang, and the color of the walls you choose are important. It stimulates the mind and gets you to think about yourself, your world, and your  life. I read once that the great artist Ferdinand Leger painted his floor red because he wanted it to stimulate him to produce better art. You need to live in rooms that make you better.  The typical room discussed in the article has none of that.

Here’s me hoping you strive to furnish your home in a way to gives you a better life.

What happens to your online life after you die?

In most jurisdictions, not much. The state of Delaware is attempting to deal with this legally. To see why,  look at this chart:

The law has an interest in determining how to deal with this online property, especially as it will sooner than later come up in legal disputes.

Here’s hoping more jurisdictions get on this as well.

Link

Vox does maps well

It’s a quirky feature of vox.com that explains things with diagrams versus “listicles”. I like it, and of the various posts that they’ve done, I got the most from this one: 40 maps that explain the Roman Empire

Should you share this with kids? It depends: one of the 40 items talks frankly about sex. If you are ok with that, then yes! for the overall piece is highly education. Kids or not, I highly recommend it to you.

The best, easiest, and most effective New Year’s resolution to make (perfect for procrastinators, too) is

The best, easiest, and most effective New Year’s resolution to make (perfect for procrastinators, too) is this: I resolve to make a new resolution every week (or month, or quarter or season, or….you get the idea).

It sounds like a lame suggestion, but think about it for a minute. By making this resolution, you have already made a resolution. Good for you! One down. That out of the way, you can decide what is a schedule you are most likely to stick to. Once a week? Possible, but tough. Monthly? More likely. I personally like quarterly or seasonally. The idea of having a new resolution every season is a great way to kick off a season. In spring you can resolve to plant new / more plants. In summer you can resolve to go to the beach more, or go on that trip you always wanted, or spend more time in the park reading or exercising. In fall you can resolve to get out and take in more culture. And in winter you can resolve to get in shape for next spring and fall.

Whatever you do, keep a list. You will be surprised at the end of the year how many resolutions that you made and kept.

The other good thing about this approach is that you keep up the resolutions, rather than making a bunch in January, only to have them die off.

Good luck!

One of the greatest disrupters is one never mentioned in that way

The word “disrupters” is very much in vogue (see here and much of what comes out of start ups from Silicon Valley). Although not spoken of in those terms, one of the great disrupters of the 20th century, Mikhail Kalashnikov, creator of the AK-47, just died. Most disruption is a destructive action as well as a creative one. The AK-47 allowed more disruption to occur than almost any other technology in the last 100 years, and while it brought death, it also brought great change. I don’t support change brought on that way, but when people heap praise on disruption, ask them what they think of the AK-47. If they don’t have a good answer, they don’t have an opinion on disruption worth listening to.