Starting in the middle

For me it started here :

How many years ago now? Seven? Ten? I can’t remember how long ago it was… but I can remember being utterly gobsmacked… The Diamond Bullet Moment… when I first came across the website where someone had created a version of the programming language PERL in Latin.

The immediate question is Why (FFS)? But being a geek, I know the answer before I’ve even asked the question. If you’re a geek, when a puzzle is let loose in your brain, you have to solve it. You have to. You can’t help it. The reason Damian Conway did this probably wasn’t a million miles away from the reason I created a 70km wide web page here, although his was a far far bigger job… and it’s is brilliant for what it represents… someone doing something massive and massively random, just for the sake of it.

So anyway, somwhere between this, and Clay Shirky’s thing about cognitive surplus here…

…yet another revolution is underway. People are doing stuff. Lots of it.

People want to participate in their culture more than they want to sit back and be entertained (and advertised to). They’re making stuff and putting it up on the internet and they’re not doing it for money, they’re doing it for attention – which makes for far more diverse and interesting output. And because it’s all going up on the internet, these things aren’t getting lost. They’re getting to cross-pollinate with other ideas.

It’s not just that copyright cartels are being sidelined, the entire culture has changed. Copying and mutating IS the culture now. Mind you, it probably always was. The 20th century was probably an aberation.

But I digress…

(you need to watch these two videos at the same time)



This blog is a collection of projects from the fringe.

2 Comments » for Starting in the middle
  1. jp says:

    here is a video of a friends contraption. it is the motor that controls his solar panel array for sun tracking. i think it deserves some recognition, if for no other reason then that he was 77 when he designed and build it, and on then because his fancy electronic sun tracker died.

  2. Nick Taylor says:

    That’s cool – I like the swappable “notches” :)

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