- 5:54 pm
- 172,310 notes
"i wish pokemon were real!"
beedrill is three feet tall
yeah but lets be real here if it meant I could live in a world with completely free healthcare and take tours across entire countries on foot with superpowered animal/else companions I would fight a hundred fucking beedrill at once naked with only a butter knife
- 8:07 pm - Sun, Jul 6, 2014
I know they killed the wild, but they’re the only way to see it anymore
I moved to the suburbs again, after being so fed up with them as a highschooler.
I came back because I wanted to be able to access nature - in the forms of state, municipal, and private parks, and backyards- in a more easy way.
It’s ironic that the lifestyle that can be argued (easily and correctly) is killing nature, is the same lifestyle I ended up in. The city is just too fucking grey and concrete, at least the one I was in where anything affordable is at least 90 minutes of public transit from your job, and where owning a car is near impossible. It is too much of a locked in grid.
Teenagers see the suburbs as a trap, but right now, it feels like I have more freedom. Freedom for me isn’t being able to get totally trashed and then take the train back home. Freedom for me, right now, is hearing birds sing when I wake up, and being able to drive 8 minutes to a beautiful municipal park, or 40 minutes to any of a number of state or national parks and nature reserves. Or 4 hours to a pristine camping site.
- 3:17 pm - Thu, Jul 3, 2014
- 5 notes
This is how much I love TNG
I can’t pick a favorite character. It used to be Data, when I was young. On rewatching, it’s definitely Riker. No, Geordi. No it has to be Troi, or the underrated Worf, or no - no it has to be Picard. Or Guinan. God damn it.
Every time one of them walks on screen I get that “oh, a favorite!” feeling, and that’s most of the cast, so I freaking love the show.
- 10:42 pm - Tue, Jul 1, 2014
- 1 note
Google Glass vs. the Smart Watch - Cyberpunks vs. the Everyday User
Don’t get me wrong: not everybody who has Google Glass is an asshole, just because they spent $1500 on a new piece of technology with limited use for now. Somebody has to be a first adapter. Remember that guy in 1992 who had a cell phone?
I understand that impulse to be that Glasshole. Before I was paying for my own life and student loans on my own, I was excited about gadgets. I can understand the impulse to jump on Glass as soon as it was released. In fact, when it was first announced a few years ago, I was excited about it.
Especially with that cyberpunk mystique. I will admit right here, that I own more than one piece of fashion that features circuit-board patterns as a motif. I learned how to solder just so that I could put together EL wire purely for the Bladerunner effect it has on costumes. I once called myself a futurist. My brain used to get sparkly with excitement at the mention of the word ‘cyberpunk,’ ‘NiN’s The Becoming’ is one of my favorite songs because it’s the best cyberpunk short story about a cyborg’s dehumanization that’s ever been sung.
Oh yeah, dehumanization - remember how being a cyborg isn’t always a net improvement in those stories?
Now that the cyberpunk future is hurtling towards us at the speed of Moore’s Law (is that even a thing anymore?), we can see what wearable technology actually looks like, and I am no longer excited about all of it indiscriminately. Just like all previous technologies, it has applications that excel at the niche they were designed to fill, and it has its unnecessary, gimmicky applications that don’t quite stick in the long term.
Technology is designed and engineered by people who want to show that a certain thing is possible to make. Its first adapters are people who want to show that this thing is possible to use. The general public, however, just wants a thing that makes their lives easier, safer, or more fun. This last group is the group that Google Glass will probably, ultimately, fail to win over.
New technology succeeds with this last group by making a leap from something the public is already familiar with, to something familiar but novel at the same time, and in a way that isn’t socially awkward or painful.
I don’t know if I need to repeat here the general reaction to Google Glass that has so far come from the public. A little bit of it is privacy paranoia, some of it is class-based jealousy, but even more of it is the dismissal of the technology based on how undoubtedly awkward it makes it users look to people around them. “Glasshole” rhymes with a word for a socially ignorant, self-centered person for a reason.
People outside of Google’s brainstorming campus actually get annoyed when other people are using technology in a way that removes them from a social situation. At brunch, you will see people putting their cel phones in a pile in the center of the table and not touching them. Some people turn their cel phones totally off when they want to unwind. Now that their use is no longer novel, smart phones’ constant intrusions into the everyday persons lives is becoming more and more annoying.
Some people even realize that they are addicted to their smart phone, and wish they could cut the tether.
Enter the other approach to wearable technology: the smart watch.
The smart watch takes the already socially acceptable and fast movement of checking a watch and turns it into a way to access your smartphone in a less intrusive, rather than more intrusive, way.
Google glass seems to pull you closer to the Internet’s constant stream of information, shoving it right into your face, making you look like you are distancing yourself from the real world around you. By contrast, the smartwatch seems to allow you to put some distance between you and that constant barrage, reducing the attention suck but allowing actually important information to come through.
People who work in technology and who get excited about new coding paradigms can certainly latch onto something that places the user’s desire for more information over the surrounding peoples’ assumption that the user is zoning out of something that this person might not want them to zone out of. This desire to test out excitingly new things is standard for true technology enthusiasts. The everyday person will not latch on, though- they already see that they look rude as fuck playing a smartphone game at the dinner table, and they’d like to just glance at a watch instead of letting everyone see them zombify themselves in public.
I will end by doing the most futurist thing someone can do: try to predict what will happen. I am fully aware that humans truly suck at this, but here goes.
In the end, I think that like the Segway, Glass will have limited applications in industrial settings and to enthusiasts. It is based on a cyberpunk vision of the future instead of on any existing desires of the public. You can’t ignore the constraints of fashion and existing manners when designing wearable technology that you hope to share with the public, since anything visible by strangers on the street is subject to the rules of social engagement that fashion is subject to.
Technology that is used industrially, or by other machines (such as a codec or an improvement on internal mechanisms), or that the user uses in privacy can make larger leaps forward, faster, than everyday, streetwear consumer goods can. It’s sad but true.