The idlest of thoughts

damian, 666
When two pickup artists hit on each other, is that the romantic/sexual equivalent of two Chinese Rooms exchanging notes, or do they bond in a meaningful way over the subtext of their shared expertise, like two tennis players falling for each other during a game? Would this be a pathological (in the mathematical sense!) corner case, or precisely what happens all the time?

I'd read the play or the short story (although not, perhaps, the trilogy) but I'm precisely the person least qualified to write it.

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A random observation

doc savage
Cities are our first and largest almost fully immersive artificial environments, and as such, they reflect our often unconscious drives and urges as much as they serve specific necessities and bow to concrete constrains.

In other words, we spend our lives inside shared dreamscapes we call cities.

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Random thought

doc savage
The ending of the otherwise execrable Terminator 3 says that there was no central processing node for Skynet; in a way, it was the Internet (understood as the whole of our interconnected computational infrastructure). As a paradigm for a technological apocalypse, I think it makes more sense than the centralized alternative (e.g. in Roboapocalypse), as well as making it scarier. There's no head to cut, and perhaps nothing much in terms of self-awareness, just a seething technological ecosystem that has found — in an statistical sense — that violent self-replication works. Hell, who's to say that T1's T-800 wasn't sent by one of those "robot factions" (an anthropomorphic misnomer, I know), because it survives better in Resistance-infested environments?

(Cf Daemon, although the fact that it was designed by an individual makes it much less cool, IMHO, than an emergent system would've been.)

I'd say something else about humankind not really having a good intuitive grasp of things you can't put a face behind (armies, kingdoms, natural phenomenons, market movements — we're the species who asks whodunit), but I'd rather remark that, except for the part Data was seduced by the Borg Queen, the Borg were much cooler when they had, and couldn't have, anything as centralized and un-Borg as a Queen.

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doc savage
Sometimes The Office is a less metaphorical Lord of the Flies: the environment is more realistic, and adults are every bit as capable of falling down dark collective rabbit holes as children.

No special insight was needed to arrive to this conclusion. Michael convinced that the office was cursed and wondering non-ironically if there might be some animal or monster they could sacrifice to, maybe one with "the head of a monkey... antlers like a deer...and the body of a,,, porcupine" was clear enough, I think. Sometimes Carell sells the PHB-ness, sometimes (rarely but skillfully) the good person below it all, and sometimes, like this one, I totally bought the creepy alienness that is only disquieting because it's not really alien.

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A problem of scale

doc savage
Millions of Indians go to polls, notes the BBC.

Which is both true --- as the article explains, there are more than 700 million eligible voters --- and also a subtle indication of that BBC writer or editor being somewhat out of touch. Google claims there are 1,147,995,904 people in India, an absurdly precise but useful number. If the average Indian spends 5 minutes a day thinking about sex (a not unreasonable assumption), then you could go with the following headline at least once a day:

Millions of Indians are thinking about sex RIGHT NOW

Point is, lots of things are being done by millions of Indians today (and millions of Chinese, and millions of lots of other arbitrary groupings of people). Using the word "millions" in a headline like that is like saying that a new laptop comes with MEGABYTES of memory. Well, duh.

I think a better headline would have been Nearly three quarters of a billion Indians go to polls.

/random post is clearly random

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doc savage
The Batman origin theory not_sally and I have just developed (well, she came up with the original story, then I added a twist, and then she decided it was about Batman; overall, it's all her fault, and if she says she meant the theory to be about me somebody else, she's lying like Bruce Wayne explaining how he got those bruises).
doc savage
A link for mosellegreen.

I like learning the names of things.

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Awesome/Not so awesome

doc savage
Awesome:

* MiddleMan spoiler.Collapse ) I have a thing, ok?

* Danny Rand, in general.

* fandomsecrets (he said with a certain shame)

Not so awesome:

* movieverse!Wanted. a) Curved bullets get old fast. Wesley's powers are supposed to be wider than that. b) The whole "taking hit orders from a loom" thing is absurd, even by Hollywood standards. c) In a bizarre turn of events, Angelina Jolie wasn't sexy, and Morgan Freeman wasn't cool. I feel like the universe is upside down.

* Late Heinlein novels. There's much to commend in them, but there's also something subtly off-putting in there.

* There's only one issue left of Pax Romana, and I think it's going to be rushed. I'd love to read much more of it.

* Being unable to sleep at 5:15 AM ETA: 6:45 AM.

Fandom Misc.

doc savage
* A meta-funny xkcd strip today!

* Potential MiddleMan == Potential Robin. Hence the danger of leaving one of them unsupervised (and, frankly, if MM thought that 'dating' == 'effective surveillance', he hasn't dated on a while). I think I see where the story is going, and it's going to get ugly.

* As always, the B-MiddlePlot was more interesting than the A-MiddlePlot. I think they do that systematically and on purpose.

* David Hewlett is awesome, but he should never do that to me again.

* Saw the play "La Muerte del Señor Miguelets." It was pretty interesting -very cinematic, fast-paced and ambiguous- but it made clear that my attitude to porn has been deeply skewed by (but a few years in) fandom.

* Leblanc's Lupin-vs-Holmes stories would be more interesting if he were more sporting about Sholmes/Holmes and -specially- Wilson/Watson. His treatment of the latter reads like bad character-bashing fic.

* The comic industry is all screwed up. I'd be far more interested in what's going on with Batman if DC hadn't lined up the thing that's going to be reset anyway as we all know event afterward. We don't need to be told months in advance what's going to happen; that only leads to us keeping up with things via s_d.

* I'm wary about it, but Air could prove interesting.

* Button: Con Anti-Harassment Project I've never been to a con (except for the various MCONs with ringspells and not_sally), but this is a fantastic idea (although it pains, angers and shames me that it's a necessary one).

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More Misc.

doc savage
* Happy Birthday, thete1!

* Finished watching Rome. Thank god it ended with a somewhat upbeat scene, the last couple of episodes were positively depressing...

* Also watched Match Point. Feels like it could have been more, but I guess that's life.

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