April 30, 2003

Idlewild : "Rusty".

You look worn out, more and more each day
With every step, and every page
You look worn out, more and more each day
With every step, and every page

Your croft, dated back to the beginning of the century
It's the beginning of the century
Inside your croft, dated back to the beginning of the century
It's the beginning of the century

What are you looking for? You'll never get close,
You definitely don't know, you're not original
What are you looking for? You'll never get close,
You definitely don't know, you definitely don't know
What you're about

You look worn out, more and more each day
With every step and every page
And you're still worn out, more and more each day
There's every way to

Your croft, dated back to the beginning of the century
It's the beginning of the century
Inside your croft, dated back to the beginning of the century
It's the beginning of the century

What are you looking for? You'll never get close,
You definitely don't know, you're not original
What are you looking for? You'll never get close,
You definitely don't know, you definitely don't know
What you're about.

Posted by dean at 01:55 PM

April 29, 2003

Ear Drums For Beer Runs At AA.

Posted by dean at 02:06 PM

Singing Like Someone Who Is Wobbling Their Larynx Up And Down For Comedy Effect.

I hate adverts even more than usual right now and it's mainly because Vodafone have resurrected the Mock Turtles. It's 2003, so how is baggy relevant? The rhythms don't make sense anymore and even the most attractive girls look like neanderthal brutes when they dance to the Stone Roses.
Bleedmusic

Posted by dean at 01:05 AM

April 28, 2003

Bloat.

[Back] in our high-school, in the old auditorium, which had been converted into a classroom and filled with students I didn't know. We were listening to my third-grade teacher, who had died five or six years before. She stood in front of a very large chalkboard packed with lines and symbols I didn't understand. Her lecture was wordless. She'd point to a patch behind her and the class would nod in unison. When I asked the girl next to me what was happening, she said, "We've almost got it. We almost know how to destroy everything."

Posted by dean at 04:01 AM

April 24, 2003

Don't Just Do Something.

Posted by dean at 02:58 PM

April 23, 2003

Labor Voyage.

Tactical Media are what happens when the cheap 'do it yourself' media, made possible by the revolution in consumer electronics and expanded forms of distribution (from public access cable to the internet) are exploited by groups and individuals who feel aggrieved by, or excluded from, the wider culture. Tactical Media do not just report events; as they are never impartial, they always participate and it is this that more than anything separates them from mainstream media.

A distinctive tactical ethic and aesthetic has emerged, which is culturally influential from MTV through to recent video work made by artists. It began as a quick and dirty aesthetic and, although it is just another style, it (at least in its camcorder form) has come to symbolize a cinema verité for the 90's.

Tactical Media are media of crisis, criticism and opposition. This is both the source of their power ("anger is an energy" : John Lydon), and also their limitation. Their typical heroes are: the activist, nomadic media warriors, the pranxter, the hacker, the street rapper, the camcorder kamikaze. They are the happy negatives, always in search of an enemy. But once the enemy has been named and vanquished, it is the tactical practitioner whose turn it is to fall into a crisis. Then (despite their achievements) it is easy to mock them, with catch phrases of the right, 'politically correct' 'victim culture' etc. More theoretically the identity politics, media critiques and theories of representation, that became the foundation of much western Tactical Media, are themselves in crisis. These ways of thinking are widely seen as carping and repressive remnants of an outmoded humanism.

To believe that issues of representation are now irrelevant is to believe that the very real life chances of groups and individuals are not still crucially affected by the available images circulating in any given society. And the fact that we no longer see the mass media as the sole and centralized source of our self definitions might make these issues more slippery, but that does not make them redundant.

Tactical Media are a qualified form of humanism. A useful antidote, not only to what Peter Lamborn Wilson described as 'the unopposed rule of money over human beings', but also as an antidote to newly emerging forms of technocratic scientism which under the banner of post-humanism tend to restrict discussions of human use and social reception.

What makes our media tactical? In "The Practice of Every Day Life" De Certeau analyzed popular culture not as a 'domain of texts or artifacts but rather as a set of practices or operations performed on textual or text like structures'. He shifted the emphasis from representations in their own right to the 'uses' of representations. In other words: how do we, as consumers, use the texts and artifacts that surround us? And the answer he suggested was: 'tactically', or: in far more creative and rebellious ways than had previously been imagined. He described the process of consumption as a set of tactics by which the weak make use of the strong. He characterized the rebellious user (a term he preferred to consumer) as tactical and the presumptuous producer (in which he included authors, educators, curators and revolutionaries) as strategic. Setting up this dichotomy allowed him to produce a vocabulary of tactics rich and complex enough to amount to a distinctive and recognizable aesthetic. An existential aesthetic. An aesthetic of poaching, tricking, reading, speaking, strolling, shopping, desiring. Clever tricks, the hunter's cunning, maneuvers, polymorphic situations, joyful discoveries, poetic as well as warlike.

Awareness of this tactical/strategic dichotomy helped us to name a class of producers, who seem uniquely aware of the value of these temporary reversals in the flow of power. And rather than resisting these rebellions they do everything in their power to amplify them, and indeed make the creation of spaces, channels and platforms for these reversals central to their practice. We dubbed their (our) work 'Tactical Media'.

Tactical Media are never perfect, always involved, performative and pragmatic, in a continual process of questioning the premises of the channels they work with. This requires the confidence that the content can survive intact as it travels from interface to interface. But we must never forget that hybrid media has its opposite, its nemesis, the 'Medialen Gesamtkunstwerk'. The final program for the electronic Bauhaus.

Of course it is much safer to stick to the classic rituals of the underground and alternative scene. But Tactical Media are based on a principle of flexible response, of working with different coalitions, being able to move between the different entities in the vast media landscape, without betraying their original motivations. Tactical Media may be hedonistic, or zealously euphoric. Even fashion hypes have their uses. But it is above all mobility that most characterizes the tactical practitioner. The desire and capability to combine or jump from one media to another, creating a continuous supply of mutants and hybrids. To cross borders, connecting and re-wiring a variety of disciplines and always taking full advantage of the free spaces in the media, that are continually appearing because of the pace of technological change and regulatory uncertainty.

Although Tactical Media include alternative media, we are not restricted to that category. In fact we introduced the term 'tactical' to disrupt and take us beyond the rigid dichotomies that have restricted thinking in this area for so long, dichotomies such as amateur vs. professional, alternative vs. mainstream, and even private vs. public.

Our hybrid forms are always provisional. What counts are the temporary connections you are able to make. Here and now, not some vaporware promised for the future, but: what we can do on the spot with the media we have access to? Here in Amsterdam we have access to local TV, digital cities and fortresses of new and old media. In other places they might have theater, street demonstrations, experimental film, literature, photography.

Tactical Media's mobility connects it to a wider movement of migrant culture. Espoused by the proponents of what Nie Ascherson described as the stimulating pseudo-science of nomadism. "The human race say its exponents are entering a new epoch of movement and migration. The subjects of history, once the settled farmers and citizens, have become the migrants, the refugees, the gastarbeiters, the asylum seekers, the urban homeless."

An exemplary example of the tactical can be seen in the work of the Polish artist Krzystof Wodiczko who "perceives how the hordes of the displaced now occupy the public space of cities squares, parks or railway station concourses, which were once designed by a triumphant middle class to celebrate the conquest of its new political rights and economic liberties". Wodiczko thinks that these occupied spaces form new agoras, which should be used for statements. "The artist", he says, "needs to learn how to operate as a nomadic sophist in a migrant polis."

Like other migrant media tacticians, Wodiczko has studied the techniques by which the weak become stronger than the oppressors by scattering, by becoming centreless, by moving fast across the physical or media and virtual landscapes. "The hunted must discover the ways to become the hunter."

But capital is also radically deterritorialized. This is why we like being based in a building like De Waag, an old fortress in the center of Amsterdam. We happily accept the paradox of *centers* of Tactical Media. As well as castles in the air, we need fortresses of bricks and mortar, to resist a world of unconstrained nomadic capital. Spaces to plan and not just to improvise, and the possibility of capitalizing on acquired advantages, has always been the preserve of 'strategic' media. As flexible media tacticians, who are not afraid of power, we are happy to adopt this approach ourselves.
Tactical Media

Posted by dean at 04:19 PM

April 22, 2003

Effie Jens.

"I've tried to be careful, it frightens her so much," Liz said. "I've begun to think seriously about taking control for all time. I think I can do a better job. I certainly have a better social life."

Posted by dean at 05:06 PM

Uncles Fight Fate Until They End Up In Empty Backyard Kayaks.

Posted by dean at 01:41 AM

April 20, 2003

Fully-Built Spacecraft, Launch System Developed In Secrecy.

Aircraft designer Burt Rutan unveiled Friday a fully-built launch system that, if flights outside the atmosphere prove successful, would be the first private manned space program. Both the spacecraft, called SpaceShipOne, and its launch platform, a futuristic jet known as the White Knight, were developed and built in secret and have already begun tests at lower altitudes.

Military officials watched the presentation with great interest, and indicated that Rutan's new launch system could be adapted to other uses as well, such as launching tiny "microsatellites" and giving military space programs far more flexibility.
MSNBC

Posted by dean at 11:09 PM

April 18, 2003

Violation Of Applicable Laws.

Someone walked past and said I should be sorry more often. I gave her a blank piece of paper.

Posted by dean at 03:49 AM

April 17, 2003

The Buzzcocks : "Something's Gone Wrong Again".

Tried to find my sock
No good it's lost
Something's gone wrong again
Need a shave
Cut myself need a new blade
Something's gone wrong again
And again and again and again again and
Something's gone wrong again
Something's gone wrong again

Tried to fry an egg
Broke the yolk no joke
Something's gone wrong again
Look at my watch just to tell the time
But the hand's come off mine
Something's gone wrong again
Something's gone wrong again
And again and again and again again and
Something's gone wrong again
Something's gone wrong again

Nothing ever happens to people like us
Except we miss the bus
Something goes wrong again
Need a smoke use my last 50p
But the machine is broke
Something's gone wrong again
Something goes wrong again
And again and again and again again and
Something goes wrong again
Something goes wrong again.

Posted by dean at 12:10 AM

April 10, 2003

Tourism Board Spokesman Told Wall Street Journal Europe That The Campaign Was Commissioned Before SARS Outbreak.

Posted by dean at 04:40 PM

April 09, 2003

Václav Havel, Taking Over As President Of Czechoslovakia, After The Fall Of Communism.

"We're not going to rush into this too quickly, because I don't know if there's that much difference between KGB and IBM."

Posted by dean at 02:27 PM

April 08, 2003

Bob Naples.

"Of course Dave'd never fire him," Sharon said. "But he was sleepy from being up all night, and he kept nodding off at the lathe. Sometimes he'd just leave it spinning and wander over to stare out the window. Dave was relieved when he stopped coming in."

In the last several weeks, all Bob would say was "Gilgamesh." Once Sharon asked him what it meant and he answered, "It's no red shoe on the backspace."

Posted by dean at 08:26 PM

Programmers Set The Aforementioned Scenario To Happen Only 25% Of The Time, And Play Testers Never Even Noticed.

The programmers therefore increased the statistical odds of this behavior occurring, and only when raised to 100% of the time did even 30% of the play testers notice. This ultimately means for programmers a paradox: if players don't notice the AI, the AI essentially doesn't exist. Therefore, AI has to be very blunt and obvious, and not have much statistical probability, for gamers to appreciate it.
Unlimited Lives

Posted by dean at 01:33 PM

April 06, 2003

The Time.

Posted by dean at 03:40 PM

April 04, 2003

It's Really Simple : India Are Already Through, New Zealand Have To Win.

Meanwhile, have you ever thought WHAT SORT OF LIFE IS THIS AND WHAT THE HELL AM I DOING BOARDING A TRAIN FOR MOORGATE AT 6.30 IN THE MORNING AND THEN STANDING AROUND FOR AGES WAITING FOR A TUBE WHILE STARING AT A SIGN TELLING YOU THAT IF YOU WAIT FOR FOUR MINUTES YOU CAN BOARD A TRAIN TO UXBRIDGE I'D RATHER WAIT FOUR HOURS FOR A JOURNEY WITH THE GRIM REAPER QUITE FRANKLY AND THEN YOU GET TO WORK AND THEN THERE'S THIS AND I KNOW THE CRICKET'S GOOD AND ALL THAT BUT I'VE GOT OUT OF THE WRONG SIDE OF BED THIS MORNING AND IN ANY CASE IT'S NOT AS IF I'LL WRITE A CRACKING MATCH REPORT AND THEN GET REWARDED BY BEING SENT ON A WONDERFUL ASSIGNMENT AROUND THE WORLD BECAUSE I'LL BE VERY SURPRISED IF ANY OF MY BOSSES WILL READ ANY OF THIS LET'S BE HONEST THEY WON'T ALTHOUGH ON THE OTHER HAND THAT'S PROBABLY JUST AS WELL HEY I WOULDN'T BE ABLE TO GET AWAY WITH TYPING THINGS LIKE THIS KIqL!UYS^%$DFLI ZSDSAFC SFE4O92 )(^(*^o"$ bBLKU E875O3 96*&^%o*"$ogb LOOK I'M SORRY THIS ISN'T EXACTLY THE SORT OF QUALITY EDITORIAL COPY YOU EXPECT FROM THE GUARDIAN BUT LOOK AT THE FACTS I'M ADRIFT IN THE MIDDLE OF ONE OF THE WORST CITIES IN THE WORLD SITTING IN FRONT OF THE SAME COMPUTER SCREEN I FACE DAY AFTER INTERMINABLE DAY HELL I COULD BE WAKING UP IN SAY THE MALDIVES OR SYDNEY OR COPENHAGEN OR A CROFTER'S COTTAGE IN SKYE AND GOING FOR A WALK IN THE CRISP MORNING AIR?

No? Only me then. Good.
The Guardian

Posted by dean at 07:55 PM

Getaway Car.

Posted by dean at 02:39 PM

Holly Kahn.

The first-time mother, barely out of her teens, had handed the baby girl to a woman wearing an operating room smock. The woman had introduced herself as a nursing supervisor and said she needed to take the baby for a final weighing and examination before the mother could take her home. That was the last time anyone could remember seeing either the woman or the baby.

Posted by dean at 06:31 AM

April 03, 2003

Everything Is Shit...The Only Thing That's Not Shit Is Sleep.

Posted by dean at 12:29 AM

April 02, 2003

Fractalanguage.

The Visual Thesaurus accesses data from WordNet, a publicly available lexical reference system developed by the Cognitive Science Laboratory at Princeton University. This database, inspired by psycholinguistic theories of human lexical memory, contains over 50,000 words and 40,000 phrases collected into more than 70,000 sense meanings.

Posted by dean at 01:33 PM

April 01, 2003

A Mystery Illness From Asia With No Known Treatment Has Killed Two More People In Canada, Bringing The Total To 64 Dead Worldwide.

Ontario health authorities announced the deaths the same day that Canada's health minister acknowledged that little is known about Severe Acute Respiratory Syndrome, or SARS, but said proper steps have been taken to control its spread.

"We have no intention of shutting down Pearson International Airport," McLellan told journalists after a meeting of Prime Minister Jean Chretien's Cabinet.

"We hope it is confined, but you never really know," Chretien said.
Sydney Morning Herald

Posted by dean at 02:36 PM

Search Engine Query Of March 2003.

Sleep twitch jerk.

Posted by dean at 12:12 AM

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