I made it with Dr Christoph Rupprecht from Doshisha & Kyoto University. Consider it an output from the “multi species cities” research stream his department have. (although he informs me ‘Meme’ is not a check box available to him in his system)
Of course it being made by the two of us, everything is footnoted in a document. Literally every square has two or more references to ideas, concepts, writers or thinkers in this space. I also threw in some Gordon White and M1k3y too obviously.
We’ve been thinking about maybe writing a whole essay together but I’m not sure.
Also Huw Lemmey had some nice words to say about Permanently Moved in his subscriber newsletter Utopian Drivel this week :
I would like to write more informally for this newsletter. I’m also thinking about doing a regular five minute podcast recorded outside, on location, which I might well release on this platform. If you have any thoughts about that, let me know — the idea comes partially from @thejaymo’s compelling podcast ‘301 – Permanently Moved’, a personal podcast 301 seconds in length. He writes, records and edits it every week in one hour, and following its development has been so interesting for me, its bitesize format allowing for short and punchy snippets of information.
I’m sure he won’t mind me saying that not every episode is for everyone, but they’re short enough that you listen anyway, following the ebb and flow of his intellectual life on a weekly basis. Having that constant this year has helped ground my own writing, but also I have noticed that I’m becoming a bit of a shut-in here in Barcelona (always a bad habit and function of my mental health), so perhaps a regular short podcast on life outside would, at the very least, be good for me. Stay tuned, and, in the meantime, do subscribe to Jay’s podcast. Three highlights for me have been:
I had coffee with the artist Penny Goring in Kingston today. It was super good to meet her IRL finally despite living round the corner from her and knowing her online for nearly a decade.
301 – 1921 – Spider-Man’s MCU No Deal Webxit
S2E21 The Disney vs Sony Webxit negotiations. Gramsci, Cultural Fracking and, fans being dispossessed of their stories by private interests This episode follows directly on from 1914 [Media property name] isn’t your friend. — You can subscribe to Permanently Moved in itunes: permanentlymoved.online/itunes or search in all your favourite podcatchers. Permanently moved is a personal podcast 301 seconds in length, written and recorded in one hour by @thejaymo
Pretty pleased with this weeks show. A few folks have said that they were nodding along with the argument about the end of history and how purveyor of mass media culture can only continue to do so by fracking content from a time that it still existed.
Though I did make a whole podcast just because I thought of the word Webxit during the week. Also disappointed in the comic books media for not using it as a headline
This week has been a week of difference influences swelling and receding like overlapping waves on the beach.
I’ve had on many hats for a few hours at a time this week.
I had a skype call with a narrative director of a large MMO about doing some work with them, which devolved into a conversation about Games Workshop finally listening to 40 years of customer complaints before we could really talk about the nature of the work. .
I was supposed to meet up for drinks with a ‘eerie ecology/film/geography/nonhuman art&research filmaker’. But had to move it to next week.
I also spoke to a VC briefly about maybe doing some strategy work with them, we’ll see how that goes too.
I also went to the Proms on Tuesday as the parents unfortunately couldn’t go themselves. Pretty standard week.
As I mentioned last week I’ve started making music again. This week I spent 2 evenings refreshing my memory on how to build synths from scratch using the principles of subtractive synthesis in Renoise
301 – 1920 – Episode 50 (Sprint Review)
A nice round number seemed like a good time to review where I am at.
I discuss how the show has evolved, workflow, stats, “Perfectionism is the voice of the oppressor” and that making this weekly has done wonders for my psychological health.
I started writing the half sketched bones of an essay to clarify my own thoughts that wasn’t going anywhere. As per this weeks podcast about pushing more stuff out I thought I’d flesh it out a bit and post it here
On Compasses and Quadrants
This week feels like the week that the weird Accelerationist political 4×4 compass levelled up out of cave twitter and went into wider consciousness.
The first in the genre I ever saw was on a friends computer at the workspace for “blockchain and utopian conspiracy Trust Support when I was speaking at P2P Web Berlin early last year.
This ACCompass came from Insta about a month ago
And this recent one is the one that has punched though.
I should note that Lilypatchwork is a “post left is the most left” internet figure. They themselves pointed out the pipeline to this sort of worldview in a recent tweet
Note: G/acc BTW for the un-initiated stands for Gender Accelerationsist (IE: using gender’s own process of decay to destroy the gender class system) It’s like xenofems black goo mirror universe form. Anyway I’m pretty deep in these circles quite a few people have read my conspiracy essay and stacktivism stuff but its not relevant or where I was going – Back to the compasses:
The quadrant diagram has achieved the status of an intellectual farce. If you, as a presenter, do not make an ironic joke when you throw one on the screen, you will automatically lose a lot of credibility.
Jay’s Twitter thread got me thinking about how we’re thinking about the future itself and how most of the mainstream conversation is stuck. Compasses over there names many different possibilities we might face or some of us even facing —maybe not as extreme as a sci-fi novel. I think one powerful side of compasses is the fact that it gives all options/possibilities at once, overloading the mind and forcing you to think about it.
I think that’s something we need more. Not always compasses but ways to push people to think about the futures we might face and start working on it. Although it might seem that all of those futures are far away but when you start thinking about it, you also understand that most of those possibilities are already here and rest is just 5 minutes bus ride away.
Compasses —especially the ones like the one here— with their design and the information density is something perfect for our current social media madness. It interrupts the clickbait and will-be-forgotten-tomorrow news and never-ending outrages with its weirdness and pulls people out of it. Of course one needs to take another step after seeing this but if we’re stuck with the current situation for now, I think best we can do is to make it as weird as possible. So that we can lure people to blogs, newsletters and other dark sides of the internet where real conversation happens. To at least try to break that banality of the future.
The bold points are my own, but also key here and I think speak for them selves.
It is exactly the “all options/possibilities at once” which makes them such fascinating memetic objects. Far more so than the tired pedestrian chaotic alignment charts you see floating around. #ACCompasses are an uplifted version of the 2×2 grid that have ascended beyond intellectual farce into the world of illusion and imagination.
In my opinion, one of the interesting judo moves that the X/Acc scene has been developing the last few years is to use weirdness as a bait/hook for the real praxis (even if the praxis is further speculation for now).
In the Acc world things aren’t weird for weirdness sake. But weird because the weirdness interrupts the clickbait attention feed. FWIW I think Haraway’s “Cthulhuscene” attempted this move in the academic world but largely fell before finished. “Tentacular Thinking” however…. influenced this information/meme dynamic deeply.
I’m inclined to see these compasses as one of the first direct examples of “Accelerationsist Anti-praxis” propaganda.
Anti-praxis consists of two basic principles: making political action as impersonal as possible and intensifying the actually existing processes of liberation and emancipation, without situating our actions within/against capitalism, but following those political vectors which point directly towards a possible exit.
One of the things I think is clear about this form of compass media object is that they rapidly open up new cognitive territory. But they also seize and claim the new territory the moment that you realise that it has formed in your brain. Like laying tarot cards of a kind you have never seen before on the table, and before you can read the spread shouting SNAP and pulling them back.
In the meme theory back channels I frequent this is known as “Ralphing”
Each and every box in those x/Acc political compasses is Ralphing cognitive territory. If just for a moment.
Any perspective that can actually be realized has already been localized by serial breakages. Nothing begins with the whole, unless as illusion. Today, we know this both empirically and transcendentally. Anything not done in pieces is not done in profound accordance with reality.
I’m running the risk of putting woke words into Land’s mouth here but I think the implications are far clearer here than they have ever been. Expect frequent referrals back to this post in the future.
DISINTEGRATIVE COSMIC ACCELERATIONISM
The ACCompass Meme is an illusion. A whole Ralph memetic object of weirdness that is the summation of its individual Ralphs. One so powerful as to pull you, even just for a moment from the day to day algorymic media madness.
I started reading Atomic Habits by James Clear this week.
It’s not very good at all. I wouldn’t bother with it if you have ever thought about wanting to read it. The whole books reads like an advert for his blog which itself is a vehicle advertising James Clear.
I have of course been inhaling more warhammer 40k books. I read the BobbyG Primark series book, and started Spear of the Emperor but I’m only like 12% of the way in.
I’ve been enjoying Pharmakon’s new track Spit It Out this week. It’s a claustrophobic noise hammer of epic proportions.
Pharmakon is the solo experimental music project of Margaret Chardiet. Her 2017 album Contact was fantastic.
I’ve also been listning to the new Album Collab Everything That Dies Someday Comes Back by Uniform & The Body ITS FANTASTIC
I’ve be absolutely fascinated by various subcultural bloggers, thinkers and writers that are attempting to explain ‘what the fuck is going on’ recently. I’ve found myself pingponging around the occult blog world, conspiracy theory, nrx, accelerationism, anthropology and botany, to name a few places.
The most interesting of the writers have a number of things in common.
They all come from outside of the academy.
They operate from large macro discussions around society, history etc first.
Some of them re-describe concepts from other subcultures and it isn’t clear that they have any cross pollination.
Shady backchannel group telegrams, discords and slacks are full of women critiquing the loudest male voices in productive ways. (you will see many blogs that will say ‘I was talking with my friend X about something blah blah blah’)
A few friends have asked me to do a series as part of permanently moved called ‘Da Fuk’ where I attempt to summarise and compare various ideas across stuff I’ve been reading. I might just do that.
The first episode would begin with the most important element that almost all the writers and thinkers seem to hold in common. It relates to the fake news plague. But also questions of Truth in todays society and that I would summarise (and agree with) as:
You do not know what the fuck is going on.
Your job is to be absolutely certain that you have no idea what the fuck is going on.
And from that raw chaos, that raw uncertainty.. as a default state of being.
Learn how to feel.
How to move forward and act in the world
These are my words, but its also how I have lived my life for a while. Its interesting. No wonder why as a macro cultural trend theres a shift towards personal responsibility. Classical virtues, Ethics and Seneca etc
In other news I went for dinner with two of my old bosses, and it was AMAZING.
In other other news. Going to the pub in 2018 is Sci-fi as FUCK
Thinking out loud about Genius Loci, Kitchens, Workshops, Desks, Mise en place and Knolling.
By the end of today a short story i’ve been writing with a *real* sci-fi writer should be finished. We have till Wednesday to submit it to the anthology. Its been eye opening working with someone who can actually write. I’m really happy that they wanted to co-write something with me. The benefits of some of the travel i’ve done this year.
A lot of story edits have been done as we have gone a long which i wasn’t expecting. Whole segments ripped out and moved to different characters etc. A sketched out 90 word plot at the top of the document has ballooned to the target 8k words since July 27th.
TFW you see your words get re-written doe. Co writing for me seems to be less harsh emotionally that overzealous editing but still.
I finished re-reading all four Scott Westerfield books in less than two weeks. They are such an easy read. Well paced etc too. I remember i used to recommend it as a sci fi series to old greybeard sci-fi fans over a decade ago when I worked in a huge bookshop leading them up to the YA section. They would balk at the covers but eventually come in and buy the whole set.
Man Child on repeat. All fucking week. Hang Up Your Hang Ups is one of the best tracks ever written. I sometimes take a break and listen to Head Hunters but the track Chameleon just gives me horrible flashbacks to being in an orchestra at secondary school and all the insufferable people who were in the Jazz band.