Newsletter.015-June/July/Aug/etc 2021

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  1. A core competency
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Top 10 June/July/August

Top10 – Summer, 2021

From the blog

It’s summer. You’re busy, I’m busy. The world is busy packing in as much “life” as we can before what looks to be another winter of lockdowns, limitations and insanity blankets the lands far and wide with dicontent, frustration and booze. It’s all been a bit much.

I had this bright idea to get into the swing of things of “creating” and “making,” which is the apparent salve for woes. The easiest version of “creating” is to write. Oh wait, I have tons of writing already. Oh I know, I’ll go through the hundreds of excepts, blips, wads and spittledazzles of writing that was supposed to be for this Halfman thing, whatever that indeed is. Here’s a couple that came out of that cesspool of markdown.

I’ve been working on this, no joke, for years. It’s a thing, I swear, a thing in terms of trying to think about technology in realistic terms within the context of the built environment.

Suburban Computing

There’s tons of things you can read about AI and what it means to us in our little lives. You need to read this instead.

When The Machines Might Not Win

Killing Darlings

Oh man, another one I hear you exclaim? Yes, and this is only the beginning. There are reams of half-baked ideas yet to be killed on paper here.

Bandcamp for Authors

Economics vs Art vs You

I have a vision of a thing where sharing instead of artificial scarcity gets creators paid. I know what you’re thinking, good luck with that. Maybe. But there is something I think behind getting the art costing the viewer some sort of value transferred to the creator based on views or experiences.

My main grip is that instead of trying to solve real problems like publishing, writing and art which it could have, the entire blockchain world decided to recreate a shittier, less equitable, ironically more centralised and less stable version of the global financial system and then do that with art.

Anyhow, I didn’t finish the follow up to We Can Do a Lot Better with NFT’s part 1, which I guess I have to now that I mention it.

Fine, I’ll Sort It

The original idea was to have a things (column?) called “Things I Hate.” By popular demand, or rather from one reader by the name of Andrew’s demand at ay rate, this new column would be where, well, I name a thing I hate and then spout on and on about it. I woke up from this fever dream of self-righteous disgust and then decided on something even more self-righteous but vaguely more positive, which is where I decide (or “design”) how something should be fixed. So whether it be the UK civil service, foodies or what have you, the upcoming blurge of words and platitudes will help ease the world’s ills.

Super Serious Forwards

Country Vlog – This old Azeri couple are so gangster it’s insane. My love and yearning for the Caucasus already knew no bounds but this has stretched it to the gut busting limit.

If you were wondering who used to live where you do before they were wiped out, you need to go to Native Land and find out.

Music Theory and White Supremacy – Man, is this intense.

Chair Times by Vitra – If you’re like me, you love a well designed chair. You love looking at them and imagining some day you’ll own one of the famous ones this film is full of while simultaneously fully aware you never, ever will. They are functional sculptures all describing industrial and societal conditions of their times, all meticulously fawned over in German with subtitles. Yet this isn’t the best part. The best part is that it is perhaps the most interesting way to fall asleep, just enough bored while aesthetically stimulated.

Ponder this

“This is the black-metal nature of task management: Every single time you write down a task for yourself, you are deciding how to spend a few crucial moments of the most nonrenewable resource you possess: your life. Every to-do list is, ultimately, about death.” (Hundreds of Way to Get S#! Done – And We Still Don’t (Wired, November))

What an analogue, right? It’s not even a conceptual or philosophical stretch really to connect the nihilism of Black Metal (well, at least second wave Black Metal at any rate) to the morose wallowing in to-dos and calendars that suck out what little life we have to claim for ourselves is it? Imagine your to-do list, picture your calendar and all’s you see is a black and white high contrast image of cold and death.

Here’s another zinger on that note by Umberto Eco:

“We like lists because we don’t want to die.”

Sort of a contrasting point. What to ponder then would be is the list creation as value statement, a way to prove that our lives are not yet over and that we have control over them? Or further, according to Eco’s point, that the lists are rationalist ramparts dug in and manned to catalogue our stand that this life is the one and only?

You deserve a coffee I’m pretty sure now.

I’m not sure about much, but I have a feeling I should like apricots and Hawkwind way more than I do.

Halfman endorses: The Meters, Nation of Ulysses, smoothies, yelling, Buddy Rich, backpacks, thru-hiking, Planinski Društvo Ljubljana Matica, Agent Orange (band not the defoliant dummy), the Brünner outdoors catalog as a meditation device, Action Bronson, waking up before kids, not refrigerating every damn edible thing in your house and The Cult.