Thursday, April 06, 2006

Dark satanic HTML

Finally tracked down Richard Lloyd Parry from The Times last night. We drank Guinness, we had a disappointingly bland meal (sorry about that, Richard) and talked politics and culture clash and Radiohead and blogs. On the latter, he made two points.

First, that if William Blake were alive today, he would be the world's greatest blogger. The combination of visual and literary imagination, technical savvy, burning desire to communicate, passionate beliefs and, not to put too fine a point on it, madness, would make for some pretty compulsive content.

Richard also said that pretty soon, blogs are going to look as quaint as 17th-century political pamphlets. What's important about them is that they're a stepping-stone, taking us from one mode of communication (dead trees) to another. What's wonderful is that no-one - not Tim Berners-Lee, not Bill Gates, not even Richard's boss Rupert Murdoch - has the faintest idea what that 'another' is going to be.

6 comments:

Billy said...

This is brilliant!

The kind of things Blake said would easily have fitted into a blog. Shame they weren't invented during his time.

I wish I'd thought of this.

Tim Footman said...

Blake was doing 'multimedia' two centuries before the word was coined. Greatest thing to come out of south London until the Eurostar.

patroclus said...

Blake was an all round genius. I saw a great caption recently at the Tate Britain next to his God Writing Upon The Tables Of The Covenant. It says "Blake thought the laws laid out in the New Testament were too rigid." That made me laugh so much I had to write it down - and I can just see him doing a ranty blog post about it.

Pashmina said...

Great point. But would he still draw freehand, do you suppose? I'd love to see how all those celestial beings would turn out in Photo-Paint.

Tim Footman said...

He'd do it freehand, then construct a scanner powered by the dreams of malevolent angels.

I really love the idea that bloggers are more excited about Blake that about the future directions of blogging. Does it prove that you're all profoundly cultured people; or simply that WB has a special ability to provoke and enthuse that few other artists possess?

Greatest ever British artist? I think. Anyone else?

patroclus said...

>>Does it prove that you're all profoundly cultured people; or simply that WB has a special ability to provoke and enthuse that few other artists possess?<<

Both, of course. Although I'm not so cultured that I can tell the difference between the Old and New Testaments :-)