Monday, January 28, 2019
First, and sorry about this, but the whole thing is a perfect Baudrillardian simulacrum, in which the glossy, bikinis-and-jetskis imagery precedes and occludes a reality that, in the end, didn’t exist and never would. But, while the idea of flying out to a beach, staying in a wet tent and being fed bad cheese sandwiches isn’t exactly on my bucket list, the social media version of it, where influencers were paid good money to flaunt their bronzed, waxed, purged bodies to say how ruddy wondrous the whole thing was going to be, looked even worse. I’ve done bad camping. I survived. The other thing would have prompted a heady cocktail of aneurysm and psychosis irredeemable by any IG filter.
Also, the overriding feeling from watching footage of Billy McFarland, the man behind the whole thing, is that right up until the very last hours, he looks as if he believes it will really come off. It didn’t, which is why he’s currently doing six years as prisoner #91186-054 at the Federal Correctional Institution in Otisville, New York; but if a scammer manages to scam himself into believing his own hype, is he still really a scammer?
Monday, January 14, 2019
The Matrix films owe much to the theories of Baudrillard, and when they were making the sequels, the Wachowskis approached the great man, hoping to get him involved. But he steered clear. In his words, The Matrix is surely the kind of film about the matrix that the matrix would have been able to produce.
PS: A more recent Keanu offering gets a coruscating review that almost makes me want to see it...
Sunday, January 06, 2019
But... yes, this.
Do NOT listen to Marie Kondo or Konmari in relation to books. Fill your apartment & world with them. I don’t give a shite if you throw out your knickers and Tupperware but the woman is very misguided about BOOKS. Every human needs a v extensive library not clean, boring shelves— Anakana Schofield (@AnakanaSchofiel) 3 January 2019
Can someone please present Marie Kondo with a copy of Anthony Powell's 1971 novel Books Do Furnish A Room? Then see if she implodes in a puff of anti-matter.— Dickon Edwards (@dickon_edwards) 5 January 2019
Thinking about the Marie Kondo 'sparks joy' thing and thinking she's clearly never found an old 2000AD or Face mag at the bottom of a box up her mum's old loft and had a full-body Proustian rush that felt like actual time travel and is one of the most sublime feelings in life.— DänielNöthing (@DanielNothing) 6 January 2019
Friday, January 04, 2019
Studies generally suggest that, year after year, less than 60 percent of web traffic is human; some years, according to some researchers, a healthy majority of it is bot. For a period of time in 2013, the Times reported this year, a full half of YouTube traffic was “bots masquerading as people,” a portion so high that employees feared an inflection point after which YouTube’s systems for detecting fraudulent traffic would begin to regard bot traffic as real and human traffic as fake. They called this hypothetical event “the Inversion.”Which raises all sorts of questions: can there be a valid Turing test if neither party is human (but each assumes the other to be)? And does Baudrillard’s hyperreality become hyper fraudulent? (“Wasn’t it always?” chuckle the cynics.) And if we’re not brains in vats, could we just be phones in racks?