Thursday, September 1
This morning, as I arrived at Arcada, I levelled up to Level 15. At the start of the game you need 5000 experience points to level up. This moves up to 10,000 points. The previous level required 15,000 point and Level 15 will take me 20,000. I decided that this probably ends my manic burst of activity. I feel myself about to revert to reading or listening to music on the way home.
I spent the morning answering emails and planning. I also met the second year to explain how the site they will make in Jutta’s class this period will be used in CMS in the second period. I promised that I will write a proper brief for the project once I have spoken with Gunilla tomorrow.
At noon I walked to Dylan to meet Samir. We agreed that we would submit an application to Kone at the end of this month, and that we would use this as the basis for whatever I will say in Riga on the 29th. We discussed the idea of the one-hundred-year computer as a way of bringing all the arguments together. We also agreed to spend a day somewhere on the 14th where we can walk and think and write.
I took screenshots of two books Samir suggested I read, and left thinking in more details about how best to present the idea of the one-hundred-year computer. By the time I returned to Arcada I realised that we should name it the Fifty Year Computer, because this would provide a working analogy in the form of Jutta’s work with her old beetles. She has fifty year old cars that still work and which she can repair and customise in ways that contemporary cars simply would not permit.
I spent the afternoon on more mailing, talking, and thinking. But not more designing and scripting alas.
The popup Museum of Nonhumanity has its opening at 18:00 today and after a brisk walk to Suvilahti and guidance from a passing cyclist, I have found the correct building. According to the invitation “the museum will present the history of the distinction between humans and other animals, and the way that this purported boundary has been used to oppress human and nonhuman beings. The Museum of Nonhumanity is launched by History of Others, a collaboration between the author Laura Gustafsson and the visual artist Terike Haapoja.”
I stand inside the venue with a glass of vegan prosecco in my hand looking around. I have met Ulla and Ilpo from Pixelache. I have chatted with Ilpo about the idea of the Fifty Year Computer. Now I stand watching people in silhouette against the back projections that fade between machinery, countryside, people and text. I like the effect that this produces.
The opening will last all evening and will include a vegan buffet later. However I feel I have seen everything I wish to see after an hour or so and head home. This will not form a criticism of the exhibition because I enjoyed it. However, on the way back I will find myself mulling over the point of it all since I cannot believe that anyone I saw at the opening could imagine themselves challenged in any way by the show. The show contained projected dictionary definitions of words like animal and beast in both Finnish and English. If you wished to define phrases such as preaching to the converted and singing to the choir then you could have videoed this opening.
Again I do not intend this as a criticism of the artists or the art, but as an observation that I could usefully address to my own work. How, boys and girls, will I manage to prevent everything I intend doing under the Dib Dib Dob umbrella from suffering the same fate?
This, as David Chalmers said in another context, constitutes the hard question.