Thursday, December 08, 2016 | RECENT NOTES

Delays: building in progress

I had originally intended that the first Convivial Café experiment would draw to a close in a few week’s time. Instead it has not yet begun. I have nobody to blame except myself, and my ability to complicate things or to spot potential complications, depending on your point of view. Let me try to explain what has happened so far and, more importantly, what will happen at Halloween.


Apes have a theory of mind

I read an article in the Guardian this week about a recently published study that suggested great apes have a theory of mind. This contrasts with previous studies and, if correct, raises profound questions about a number of questions: the relationship between humans and animals, and the possibility of animals having moral rights, to name just two.


Tuesday, December 6, 2016 | THERE WE WERE


Friday, June 23, 2006 | ESSAYS

Issues around the idea of symbolic forms

Lev Manovich argues that the database is replacing central perspective as the dominant symbolic form by which we make sense of our world. In this he follows the work of Ernst Cassirer, whose Philosophy of Symbolic Forms defines the task of humankind as seeking “the categories of the consciousness of objects in the theoretical, intellectual sphere” and suggests that this “starts from the assumption that such categories must be at work wherever a cosmos, a characteristic and typical world view, takes form out of the chaos of impressions.”.

This essay is simply me thinking aloud about some of the issues and questions that this raises.