Come Up You Fearful Jesuit

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Theme-Monkeying and Amateurism

Posted on November 29, 2010 in Computrons Culture

Okay, so things look normal again. There were a bunch of non-cosmetic changes which were good in that they made things cleaner (I think I managed to cut six or seven divs without changing how anything looks, which ought to tell you a lot), but also kind of stupid inasmuch as many changes were to expose functionality that I have no intention of using, and which very few people would miss if it weren’t there.

The reason for this latter aspect of the change was that I thought it might be fun to bundle this theme and make it available at the WordPress theme repository. I don’t want to be a dick about this, but the experience was sort of disheartening. So I’m not a PHP dev, but the whole point of frameworks like WordPress is that you shouldn’t fucking have to be in order to participate. Really, a unique stylesheet should be all a submitter has to present in order to get a theme accepted, but this is not the case. In fact, there are default behaviors in WordPress that mean a theme must be submitted with a custom functions.php file. Shit like this is basically what’s killing the internet. People are moving to siloed, closed, tightly-controlled places like Facebook because the effort required to maintain your own stuff is too great for most people.

When Geocities limped off into the sunset last year, responses tended to be pretty glib. By this point, we’re all expected to love the shiny, AJAXy feel of web 2.0, and people are already scrambling to find excuses to call their bullshit shovelware web 3.0 (it uses Ruby to generate the annoying Javascript! It’s brand new!) We love it so much that we kvetch about how ugly Craig’s List is, and how it needs a makeover. So when you go to make your own damn site, you know nobody will be interested unless you’re willing to spend hours making it go, or you just throw up your hands and put it on Facebook (or similar) and have done.

El Reg recently had an article highlighting Tim Berners-Lee (OBE)’s complaints about Facbook/iTunes and similar’s threats to the “universality” of the web. Berners-Lee, who is about as technical as a person can be, doesn’t seem to understand that people flee to places like Facebook in large part because putting your stuff up has become so intimidating. You can’t just upload your marginally-formatted text documents like you did in the olden days. You’ve got to get all that shit right.

So yeah, it’s kind of too bad that the internet has lost the taste for amateurism that allowed a thousand Timecubes to bloom, and it’s even worse that we didn’t get anything worthwhile for it. Instead, we get a bunch of “services” that duplicate existing functionality under kind of retarded terms. Like real world democracy, I guess it was good while it lasted.


Posted on November 28, 2010 in Uncategorized

Don’t worry, I am not keeping this theme. Things will be back to normal soon and I’ll do some complaining about the state of the internets.



Posted on August 24, 2009 in Uncategorized

I am still reading “The Culture Industry.” I just had to pause for a visit from my father and also give myself some time to live the fuck out of the dream.



Big Plans for Everyone

Posted on August 15, 2009 in Reading Project

The ladyfriend and I have been wrangling our bookshelves into shape. It has been quite a struggle, but the end is definitely in sight. This fact, however, throws into stark relief the fact that I have a ton of books that I ought to at least touch base with from time to time. The classics of the genre that one should recall upon occasion. Stuff like that.

So I’m going to do it. I’m going to read an excerpt from each of my philosophy books every couple of days and post about it. It’s going to be awesome. Serious! For the record, when one collects a certain type of book predominantly, one tends to fold other books into that type. This means that some sociology and psychology and assorted other types of books will be included here, but that’s probably a bonus, if you think about it.

I’m going to go in alphabetical order, so in a couple of days you’ll get my treatment of noted crank Theo Adorno’s Prisms. Because I want to go easy on myself in the early days of this endeavor, I think I’ll be sticking to the musicology.



Stately, Plump

Posted on February 3, 2009 in Uncategorized

So yeah, that’s a pretty sweet Web 2.0/iPhone theme there. In my defense, it beats the default hands down, and I am, for whatever reason, not in the mood to whip up something new. Actually, not really whatever reason. It’s because I’m feeling a bit cloudy these days. This too is directly attributable to some stuff, but not necessarily public forum stuff. Upshot: need more variety in terms of certain activities. Hopefully this will involve course work. Developing.

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