Filtered for Muybridge and Moorcock

10.19, Thursday 12 Feb 2015


Old school smart home:

Your microwave just heated a lasagna.

Record: You just stared out of the window for 23 minutes. [Ok] [post your score]

Your couch likes your microwave’s status update.

It’s raining again. [Ok]

Also, not the same, but: Ranjit Bhatnagar says I plugged a little light sensor into an amplifier to hear invisible light modulation. One of my LED candles had a surprise. Watch the video, it plays a little tune.

Sallie Gardner at a Gallop is a series of photographs consisting of a galloping horse, the result of a photographic experiment by Eadweard Muybridge on June 15, 1878.


The purpose of the shoot was to determine whether a galloping horse ever lifts all four feet completely off the ground during the gait; at this speed, the human eye cannot break down the action.

Muybridge used his photographic technique like a microscope on time – to see motion previously too quick to catch.

Everything speaks.


Michael Moorcock: How to write an adventure model in three days.

Formula, structure, using what’s on hand: Really, it’s just looking around the room, looking at ordinary objects and turning them into what you need. A mirror: a mirror that absorbs the souls of the damned.

Moorcock is a legend.


Do Things That Don’t Scale, by Paul Graham.

Actually startups take off because the founders make them take off. There may be a handful that just grew by themselves, but usually it takes some sort of push to get them going. A good metaphor would be the cranks that car engines had before they got electric starters. Once the engine was going, it would keep going, but there was a separate and laborious process to get it going.

Great article.

The startup worldview. I mean: it’s effective at newness, yes, and I am pro progress. The underlying value resonates with me: The world is a do-ocracy and you can make your stamp by doing. That wasn’t always the case, authority-by-history has been dominant for so long.

BUT (a) what can’t be reached by this worldview? A whole bunch, probably. But actually I think it would be productive to point startups at a much wider variety of problems. Case in point, Bethnal Green Ventures and “tech for good.”

BUT (b). The mode of coordination of all these small enterprises is to share a language and share a way of being in the world. It can feel a bit paint-by-numbers sometimes, and that’s fine… except that worldviews are like the Catholic church in medieval Europe, and Silicon Valley is our Rome.

A double-edged sword, if your native culture is not Roman.

Then I remember Moorcock, who painted by numbers, but truly was a fucking legend for all time, who wrote books you can inhale and - by force of will and a community of like-minded geniuses - created a new and truly British science fiction, one that changed everything.


A few weeks ago, I got the “call for talks” email from OpenTech 2015 – it’s in June, it’s the 10th edition.

The email said: The main thing we’re looking for are the things we don’t know to look for.

And then they linked to Phil Gyford’s list, trying to imagine a tech conference that would embody an alternative viewpoint.

  • Different models for start-ups. Co-operatives. Employee ownership. Normal, slowly-growing, profit-making businesses.
  • Ruricomp - technology for people who don’t live in cities.

Makes me think: My notes on City Link and a new class of worker.

Makes me think:, A program, network and funding mechanism for founders looking to start and scale independent businesses with positive cash flow. A different kind of deal.

A note

I started writing these “filtered” posts because of Michael Sippey:

I used to blog; I haven’t in a while. I miss it. So this is trying something new, without the daily pressure of a capital B Blog, or the content pressure of a the capital E Essay. Start a new draft post on Monday, dump things in it over the week, rewrite and cull along the way, what’s left gets published on Friday. Let’s see how long I keep this up.

So that’s what got me going, because I was having difficulty finding my voice. Then there’s Nat’s four short links which he does daily.

But let’s be clear… this is all about me: What I get out of this is that somehow, by typing, four unrelated things that have caught my eye sometimes show signs of coherence. I get glimpses of the gestalt. So that’s why I type.

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