Postcards from the Bleeding Edge
Thursday, January 10, 2008

  Stuff of the year 2007

I'm a little late for top 10 lists, etc, but I thought I'd write down a couple things that really influenced me last year. These are my choices for "X" of the year, where X is:

Book: Accelerando, by Charles Stross. This is the first ebook that demands to be read as such. Fundamental book for getting me thinking seriously about the meta level of distributed conciousness.
Song: The Horizon had been defeated - by Jack Johnson. The song ties back into the book, above, and also about my personal circumstances. It's the first new song I've learned in years, and now I'm trying to master the bass part and sing it at the same time.
Album: On and On - Jack Johnson. I hear this guy everywhere I've been this last year, which has been a lot of surf spots, and campgrounds. He's just suited for ambling along... The above song is on this record, and my second favorite is "holes to heaven", which has been especially good, given the clarity of the stars here on the south side of the equator. Got that guitar lick mastered now, too.
Album concept: Year Zero, by Trent Reznor. I didn't actually care for the music that much but the ideas around the concept resonate.
Person: Bruce Steinberg. Damn it, I'm going to miss him, and what his archetype represented. Scribbling his tag on Mariner... I'll be hearing Hot Summer Day in my head for a long time to come.
Best idea: Open source politics, as exemplified by the features and flaws of the Ron Paul grassroots supporters.
Stupidest idea: Too many to list... however, at the moment, I am cussing myself out for thinking for over 25 years that the world out there didn't have anything to offer that was better than the internet. Boy, was I wrong.
Best Blog: I still religiously read Doc Searl's blog although now, most of the action takes place on the vrm list - in a sort of comeuppance of old technology over new. Andrew Sullivan has moved up the field to second, and technorati searches of rss feeds for the stuff I'm interested in takes a close third. I still care a heck of a lot about space, but I've come to believe there is nothing I can do about it professionally. I did, recently make a stab at writing a song about asteroids...

Lately I've spent so much time inside my own head that when I come out of it I've mapped familiar concepts so much with the alien that I'm not making any sense when I try to express it in words. My head is full of half formed thoughts, and concepts for which there are no words. I worry about this, but I remember when telling people about what USENET was like was hard... I keep thinking I should stop writing things down, and just record things, and play music, and upload that, a story of audio dissolution, rather than write anything anymore, or publish under an alias until things become more concrete, the recordings being a trail of breadcrumbs back from wherever I'm going....

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Comments:
Hot Summer Day? Man, now I wish I knew the guy, just because he's also connected somehow to It's a Beautiful Day. It was a happy day for me when that band's albums became available on iTunes.

"They told me that the sun turned green, I said I didn't know

They told me that the moon turned blue, I said it didn't show

And they told me that I looked a fool, I said I'd let that go

But when they told me that our love was dead, I had to turn and go

Oh, love, love, love, love, love
Where did you go?..."


And now I'm crying uncontrollably and I don't know why. Lost days of youth perhaps? Times before I realized the limitations of the flesh? Searing violin solos played into the star-filled, tripping night by kids destined to become scientists and drunks, lawyers and statistics....

Oh, love, love, love, love, where did you go? Maybe that's the question of our generation, not destined to be answered on the mortal plane?

Tell me about this guy, Mike, do an article about him, in depth, please. It looks like he deserves a larger memory, thrown out upon the 'Net to be preserved perhaps until the sun blossoms into red.

Tom Trumpinski
 
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David Täht writes about politics, space, copyright, the internet, audio software, operating systems and surfing.


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