Poetic Conversations

wooden ruler with four horizontal levels of measurements which seem to include cm, inches and two others I cannot identify. Black print against faded, off white background.
Image credit:<a href="http://Photo by <a href="https://unsplash.com/@roberto_sorin?utm_source=unsplash&utm_medium=referral&utm_content=creditCopyText">Roberto Sorin</a> on <a href="https://unsplash.com/s/photos/overlap?utm_source=unsplash&utm_medium=referral&utm_content=creditCopyText">Unsplash Roberto Sorin on Unsplash

Sentences I’m thinking about as we crack open 2022:

Rather than link increasing velocity to liberated exuberance, Virilio, in Speed and Politics, suggests that “the more speed increases, the faster freedom decreases”: By the time an action is required in real time, the moment to act is already swiftly disappearing into the past. Freedom requires the time in which to deliberate and to act, and extreme speed deprives individuals of that time

Zachary Loeb, Inventing the Shipwreck, Real Life Mag, Jan 3, 2022 (emphasis mine)

Freedom requires the time in which to deliberate and to act, and extreme speed deprives individuals of that time.”

Rather than anticipating what might happen out of the myriad and unknowable possibilities on which the very idea of a future depends, machine learning and other AI-based methods of statistical correlation “restrict the future to the past.” In other words, these systems prevent the future in order to “predict” it—they ensure that the future will be just the same as the past was.

Chris Gilliard, Crime Prediction Keeps Society Stuck In The Past, Wired, Jan 2, 2022 (emphasis mine)

In other words, these systems prevent the future in order to “predict” it—they ensure that the future will be just the same as the past was.

Untitled
anticipating what might happen, the moment to act is swiftly disappearing.
the time in which to deliberate the very idea of a future
depends on the past:
ensure, predict; restrict, prevent.
“the more speed increases, the faster freedom decreases”
"the future will be just the same as the past was."
Rather, rather.

Rather than helping us to manage social problems like racism as we move forward, as the McDaniel case shows in microcosm, these systems demand that society not change, that things that we should try to fix instead must stay exactly as they are.

Chris Gilliard, Crime Prediction Keeps Society Stuck In The Past, Wired, Jan 2, 2022

It may seem obvious today that there had never been a car crash before the car was invented, but what future wrecks are being overlooked today amidst the excited chatter about AI, the metaverse, and all things crypto?

Virilio’s attention to accidents is a provocation to look at technology differently. To foreground the dangers instead of the benefits, and to see ourselves as the potential victims instead of as the smiling beneficiaries.

Zachary Loeb, Inventing the Shipwreck, Real Life Mag, Jan 3, 2022

amidst the excited chatter

what future wrecks are being overlooked today?
things that we should try to fix
helping us to manage social problems like racism;
To foreground the dangers instead of the benefits
may seem obvious.


as we move forward
these systems demand that society not change;
to look at technology,
to see ourselves 
as the smiling beneficiaries
instead of 
as the potential victims.

things
must stay exactly as they are.
 

Welcome 2022 and take this thought with you, too.

Protect your energy and help your friends and loved ones do the same.

The Gaming Industry Has A Tale to Tell

Consider this statement:

… the greatest game programmer of 1985 would be completely worthless today without a complete re-education. None of their existing knowledge would be useful. Heck, someone from 2005 would have some catching up to do before they could really contribute to a modern team. Tools and techniques are going extinct as fast as new ones are invented, which means everyone needs to be constantly learning just to retain their current level of competence.
Then this:
Technologically speaking, there has never been a safe place to stand. At any moment the public might run off in pursuit of a new device, new type of controller, new way of doing graphics, or a new kind of gameplay…
What’s this about?
So video games have changed more often, the change has been more abrupt and less forgiving, and it’s all happened in a much shorter period of time. These shifts happened several times to a single generation of people, instead of working their way gradually through the industry as each new generation supplanted the previous one. The result is an industry that doesn’t know how to do its job. And I think this explains a lot of the dysfunction we see today.
These quotes are from Shamus Young (@shamusyoung) in his column post: “The Video Game Industry Is Going Through Some Really Awkward Growing Pains” on the Escapist. His description of the industry took me by surprise.  The breathtaking speed of change he illustrates coupled with the enormous pressure on developers, writers, and executives to adapt, produce, and distribute quickly  or have their projects (and companies) die a swift death gave me pause.  Here’s a rapidly growing industry that is technology-based and where the number of jobs is expanding (for now) and look at what they are dealing with:
  • Constantly moving market targets
  • management inexpertise
  • people at all levels of development and production barely able to keep pace or to guess well what the next big thing might be

In effect it’s the new real world on steroids – that “real world” we’re supposed to be preparing our kids for. And not surprisingly there is plenty of chaos according to Young.  So in this type of scenario, your survival depends on your ability to learn and unlearn quickly. You need to be able to let go of outdated or obsolete applications about as quickly as you can grasp and apply new ones. Your capacity to work well with others, to collaborate, meet deadlines, and demonstrate flexibility in the process are crucial. Initiative, creativity, big picture thinking along with an eye for minute detail contribute further to insuring your fit for this industry.

My point here is neither to sound an alarm or point a finger, rather to simply draw attention to what’s happening out there, beyond our education frontier.  We, educators and parents, need to keep our eyes and ears open for the trends of the working life our kids may encounter and consider them as we keep moving their learning in the direction of increased relevance and authenticity.