Archive of published posts on March, 2014

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Of the Art and Culture in (Brave New) World

03/25/2014

“They don’t care where you were born, just how.” (Gattaca)

Aldous Huxley was born into a family whose eminence was indisputable. In fact, there have been only few other lineages which “produced” more Nobel Prize laureates, as it is the instance of the incubator for highly functional individuals – the Curie’s. Huxley’s family gave rise to prominent scientists too. In particular, Julian, Aldous’ brother, was academically involved in the evolutionary biology and eugenics, which certainly had a considerable influence on Huxley the writer. We will not be far from the truth if we posit that the novel Brave New World could be regarded for Huxley as a material wherein he could apply his philosophical and scientific observations on the subject of eugenics and human population – a literary work in which the natural selection is substituted and subjugated by the needs of a totalitarian state. Without diminishing Huxley’s genius, it is almost a miracle that there could be a person without the benefit of Huxley’s stimulating background who did write on the same topic and much more importantly, several years earlier than Huxley himself. As George Orwell pointed out in his review of We, as one of the first who noticed the striking similarity, Huxley must have been partially influenced by Zamyatin’s novel. Orwell writes that: “The atmosphere of the two books is similar, and it is roughly speaking the same kind of society that is being described though Huxley’s book shows less political awareness and is more influenced by recent biological and psychological theories.” (Orwell)

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Zápisky z: Lev Manovich – The Language of New Media (Úvod)

03/1/2014

Introduction

Manovich popisuje jak nastoupil na matematickou střední školu, které měla rozšířený sylabus o programování, přestože se původně chtěl stát malířem. V dnešní době až komicky působí výuka programování, ve které první dva roky studenti neviděli nic, co by aspoň vzdáleně připomínalo počítač a veškeré “programování” probíhalo na papíře. Doslova. Učitel známkoval takovéto programy stylem, kdy snižoval hodnocení za zapomenuté středníky a jiné provinění, na které nás dnes během milisekund upozorní náš oblibený editor či IDE. Po dvou letech, Manovich pokračuje, skutečně uviděli počítač na místě, pro které bylo standardně potřeba míti povolení. Nicméně při zadání programu se nic nestalo, neboť Manovich (a ostatní nejspíše také) viděli klávesnici poprvé v životě a tak místo “nuly” zadával(i) “O”.

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