Dream Machines


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Presentation for MIT Media Lab conference on 'Metaphors we design by' with Amit Zoran and Susanne Seitinger.


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  • Dream Machines

    1. 1. Dream Machines <ul><ul><li>Technological Imaginary and Visual Representation </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Jb Labrune - MIT Media Lab Conference, March 23rd, 2009, Cambridge, MA. </li></ul></ul>
    2. 2. Visual Representations & Technology <ul><li>Visual Representation is a necessary reduction </li></ul><ul><ul><li>Its constraints invite authors to make choice and to reduce the complexity of the ideas and structures they want to manifest </li></ul></ul><ul><li>Visual Representation is a lie , since it masks and destroy what is not evident or visible </li></ul><ul><ul><li>Metaphor (transport, coherence, correspondence) vs Aletheia ( http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Aletheia ) </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Epistemological critique of visual representations: risk of pseudo-scientific drift when social scientist or artist relay on technological and scientific visual imaginary ( Fashionable NonSense ) </li></ul></ul>
    3. 3. Wood Paintings (1 bc)
    4. 4. Illuminations (1500) Almagestum Esoteric/Exoteric Representations
    5. 5. Media Lab (1515)
    6. 6. UTOPIA <ul><li>Thomas More, 1534 </li></ul><ul><li>Vision of an ‘Ideal City’ (Pierro della Francesca) </li></ul>
    7. 7. Uchronia, (1876) <ul><li>Charles Renouvier </li></ul><ul><li>Apocryph History vs Religion </li></ul>
    8. 8. Fragments of Future History, (1896) <ul><li>Gabriel Tarde, Underground Man , written from 1879 to 1884 but published in 1896 with a Postface in french from H.G. Wells (1905). Published in a Sociological Journal. Considered as a precursor of modern SF. http://classiques.uqac.ca/classiques/tarde_gabriel/fragment_histoire_future/fragment.html </li></ul><ul><li>Criminologist precursor of Modern Sociology </li></ul><ul><li>Critiqued in France to be a rip-off of Cournot (François Vatin - Thanks Manuel for the reference) Tarde, Cournot and the End of Times ( http://cat.inist.fr/?aModele=afficheN&cpsidt=1551067 ) This paper proposes a new interpretation of Gabriel Tarde's science fiction novel published in 1896 and titled A Fragment of Future History' (English translation published in 1905 as Underground Man). Influenced by the philosopher Augustin Cournot, Tarde imagined a world where the extinction of the sun forced a realization that time is finite. This realization of the possibility of collective death evoked in Tarde's novel may have influenced the emergence of sociology at the end of the nineteenth century </li></ul>
    9. 9. Anticipation
    10. 10. Translation <ul><li>Nadar, 1876 </li></ul>
    11. 11. Voyages Imaginaires H.G Wells Jules Verne Georges Melies
    12. 12. SCIENTIFIC Romance
    13. 13. Illustrations <ul><li>Vannevar Bush, 1945 </li></ul>
    14. 14. Popular MECHANIcs
    15. 15. Imaginary <ul><li>Lacan, 1944 </li></ul>
    16. 16. Fashionable NonSense, 1997-8 <ul><li>Sokal and Bricmont intellectual impostures and postmodernism critique </li></ul><ul><li>For ex, critique of Lacan, Deleuze, Latour usage of scientific concepts </li></ul><ul><li>Fashionable Nonsense examines two related topics: </li></ul><ul><ul><li>the allegedly incompetent and pretentious usage of scientific concepts by a small group of influential philosophers and intellectuals </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>the problems of cognitive relativism, the idea that &quot;modern science is nothing more than a 'myth', a 'narration' or a 'social construction' among many others as seen in the Strong Programme in the sociology of science. </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Strong_Programme </li></ul></ul>
    17. 17. Everything Digital <ul><li>Ted Nelson, 1974 </li></ul><ul><li>You can and MUST understand computers NOW </li></ul>
    18. 18. Uchronia to Althistory
    19. 19. NeoSurrealism
    20. 20. NeoFiction - UbiFiction <ul><li>NON Fiction - Realisation | Realization </li></ul><ul><li>SEMI Fiction - Transition | Hybridization </li></ul><ul><li>SCIENCE Fiction - Exploration | Revolution </li></ul><ul><li>DESIGN Fiction - Aesthetics | Information </li></ul><ul><li>SOCIAL Fiction - Reflection | Influence </li></ul><ul><li>POLITICAL Fiction - Rethorics | Control (Power) </li></ul><ul><li>META Fiction - Transport, Translation | Revelation/Reception/Unveiling </li></ul>