Screen World and The Rise of the Monetized Self

Welcome to Screen World! It’s all new and different and changes everything all the time! Here, near the entry to Screen World, we’ve placed our hottest experiences that everyone who’s anyone will be talking about tomorrow. Just a little further in, we’ve arrayed our brightest lights with their achingly perfect bodies, always-on-vacation lifestyles, and pithy observations. Next we have.. Yes? A question? Exits? Well, why would anyone want to exit? You might MISS something! And exit to where? After Screen World, anything else is just disappointing. Complex, dirty, frightening. But listen to me go on. I MUST BE TRENDING. Screen world has just everything so it must have exits. I’m sure the fault lies with me. Please step over to the kiosk where are our perky, polite AI Chat Bot will…

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cYborG liKe mE

When’s the last time you talked to your computer? Well, o.k. when’s the last time you talked to your computer and expected something to happen as a result? For me, it always was a little like talking to myself, something done more for the feel of it than the content. Recently however, the one-way pronouncements have begun to take on more of two-way flavor.

I’ve never been a big fan of Siri or Cortana or especially the creepy no-name Google that’s just trying too hard to be friendly. I still hear a bit of the drunken Swede that was state of the art for computer generated voices back in the 80’s when I first worked with the technology. Beyond that, though, I had to wonder what the point was. My experience both personally and watching others was that it was just easier to use the keyboard. I’m not a fan of endlessly repeating myself at ever escalating tones of voice and more precise diction and yet that seemed to be how things played out more times than not.
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It’s an Art and a Science: Or We’re Not in the Fourth Grade Anymore

Art-Sci“Well, it’s as much an art as a science.” You’ve said it. I’ve said it. We’ve all said it at one time or another, usually to deflect some misguided wish for certainty, simplicity, or immediacy. Beyond the verbal hand-waving, however, there is a deeper truth. The professions we choose are, ultimately, all human endeavors and as such come with the all the mystery and ambiguity of human instincts, emotions, visions and even intellect. The whole truth is the “Art and Science” phrase is said as much to comfort ourselves in what we don’t know or completely understand as it is to suggest an elevated status conferred by access to some secret wisdom. Continue reading