Thursday, 19 January 2017

Oxymoron

In this modern age, in which irony has been rendered essentially meaning less and satire carries little to no influence, it can be extremely difficult to identify instances of irony when they occur, no matter how stark they might happen to be. A case in point being the recent release to the public of the new model of acoustic guitar, design and manufactured by the Yamaha corporation.

In the spirit of fairness it ought be clarified that the producer refer to the instrument as being 'transacoustic'. Despite such linguistic concessions, the instrument very much resembles and functions as traditional acoustic model. Setting it apart from its wire and wood brethren, even accounting for those equipped for use with amplification devices, is that the Yamaha YSP-5600 has electronic, amplification effects built into its structure. This allows for limited amplification simply by using the 'on-board' system. What is perhaps most striking about the instrument is how natural it still sounds, in no way compromising the honest, natural, acoustic sound and tones through the amplification process. What may perhaps be the first instance of a truly 'electric-acoustic' instrument.

Monday, 16 January 2017

Immortal Record

It has been a sad truth since the days of Mary Shelley that the human race has tried to
take control of nature. To do things that we, as a species, were never really meant to do
Indeed, from the copyrighting of genomes into private property to tampering with
genetic codes, the extent to which scientific practitioners seem willing to play in God's
sandbox seems truly limitless. Newest on this list of abominable outrages is the coding
of data into a gene sequence. Not quite content with creating modes of conveying
entertainments that will exist forever and hold several hours of content, it has been
endeavored upon to ascertain a manner in which such media archives would be both
limitless in their capacity and eternal in their existence. Not only may one favorite
music album or film but all their favorite music albums and films, no matter how
numerous, can be kept, literally frozen, in a DNA strand until one wants to use them
again. Not that it stops here of course. Perish the very thought! So blurred as the line
betwixt the human and the artificial become among some quarters, there are those, ill
content with simply having their chosen streams of data turned into a strand of DNA,
they also insist upon having said DNA, introduced into their system for safe keeping.
One is, of course, familiar with the notion of 'becoming one with the music' but this,
gentle reader stretches the very limits of absurdity.










Thursday, 12 January 2017

Evangelists and Detractors


It is an observation not strained that matters of great importance can often bring about
feelings of great passion. The expression of and loyalty to which can prove to be most intractable. In the modern age, there are few things more vital, or controversial, to day to day living than technological devices used to correspond with ones neighbors, friends and people living in nearly every known country in the world. Yet such capability is not embraced by all. As with nearly every great leap forward in terms of the social and economic frame-work, there are those who wish to stay where they are and long for what was once the case, responding to any potential threat to this comforting status quo with dismissiveness derision if not outright, ill-tempered aggression, like a Cricket bowler who has just had his technique insulted. Similarly to how some weavers responded to the introduction of the automated loom by smashing
them, there are those who tenaciously refuse to take any participation with any device developed following the turn of the 20th century, rhapsodizing loudly and often about the way things used to be done. Arguing, in all seriousness and gravitas, that they prefer using typewriters to any sort of new fangled writing device that may need to be plugged in. Perish the very thought!

If there is one thing, as the proverb goes, there is always another, every coin having two sides and all that. Similarly as there are those who reject advancement out of hand as having just been offered a herbal tea with low-fat milk, shudder, there are those who embrace the ever changing nature of communication devices with the enthusiasm and devotion of a religious zealot or the sort on sees besmirching Speakers Corner in abandon. Such chaps, so enthused, have been known to blindly follow their
chosen way, often purchasing the newest redesign with little to no thought as to whether most recent iteration offers even a squint more in terms of how they function as compared to that release a scant six months previous. Unfamilar with the notion that they may be incorrect, such devotees are given to long explanations, often coming to
border on the patronizing, as to why their particular manner of doing things is clearly
the best any anyone who might potentially disagree with their chosen course is a most
contemptible dullard and twit, worthy of nothing save for derision and scorn with no
useful part to play in the world. Those who hold the opposing view, of course, usually thinking the exact same thing of their opposite number on the opposing side.

It has all, frankly, gone more than a bit pear-shaped and it seems an unlikely contingency for things to continue at their current tenor. It would seem under the current condition, that the best for which on could reasonably hope at this juncture
would be for a general dissatisfaction to set in. A sense of ennui regarding the present context as to allow another, more functionalist paradigm to take shape, in which rather than being subjects to the whims of technological change, individuals choose what is best for them form the plethora of choices even now. A return to an overall sense of basic functionalism in which what one chooses to use or not to use is dictated not by marketers, current trends or what they are told that they simply “must have” to take part in contemporary society but by what is required for the task at hand in a practical sense on a case by case basis.



































Monday, 9 January 2017

Elder's Scrolls

In every generation, there are those who say that the
younger individuals counted among their number are 'out
of control' and entirely different from themselves when
they were within their own flower of youth.Statements made while, utterly lost on the fact that their elders were saying the same thing about them and so it has been since humanity began making records of our observations of each
other. Yet, despite this wealth of record, surely contradicting such foolhardy assumptions, there is a notion common among the older fellows and ladies in the current cultural context that their children are utterly alien to what they were. A sort of different form of intelligent life, and that technology is the most likely culprit.

This is, of course, utter tosh. No such causal link
between using technology an becoming a disconnected, unfeeling object one's self exists as according to all known evidence. The crux of the matter, it would seem, comes down to the rate of innovation since the late-1970s,
that has lead to technology unlike any that had existed before, being widely available to the general populace in
a, comparatively, short period of time. The duration between the first mobile telephone and the smartphone was as weeks when compared to the nearly one hundred years it took to not only develop a commercially viable automobile but then convince people to actually use it. It was a very slow, difficult going at the beginning.

All of this has lead to a situation in which parents do not understand their children or the technologies they utilize in which to navigate the world. Despite these technologies, and the motivation to use them, being very similar to those twenty years before. Taken in terms of sheer purpose and use, the difference between early form computer 'chat-rooms' and a contemporary mode of electronic communications such as Twitter is, essentially, moot. Similar programming, on similar forms of device for identical purposes.

Thursday, 5 January 2017

The Sum of Its Parts


It is a fact often decried that electronic accessories produced by certain producers, who shall remain nameless for the sake of tact and dignity, have a capacity for failure and suicidal self-destruction rivaled only by the Kamikaze pilots of the pacific region. Not satisfied with this sort of impertinence , there are many such companies that intentionally make it so some of their accessories a and programmes cannot be used with those of other, often competing, companies. Once can only conclude, given the available evidence, that the result of such grift and skulduggery, namely over-priced essentials that can only be bought directly from the company and the resulting waste, are not only intentional but calculated.

Politicians, lobbyests, leaders of non-governmental organization and other such assorted officials and busybodies have long bemoan the lace of justice for consumers wronged by those in the corporate sphere taking Smithian philosophy to a point that is beyond the pale. Protestations that would carry a good deal more gravity, where they enforced by tangible actions of legislation such requiring that all accessories from charging cord to batteries be ubiquitous and inter-changeable with all other makes and models, gave a guaranteed life-span and in addition to being included with the devices, having generic replacements widely available and constructed out of materials that can be recycled with relative ease.

Monday, 2 January 2017

The Next Same Thing


There are, indeed, many lovely and useful aspects pertaining to the technology present in the current era. It is indubitably among the best of times in terms of being able to conduct fascinating research, seek out improving tomes and corresponding with one's chums.

Alas, it must also be said, if for nothing else than in the interest of credulity, there are also some aspect that are less than desirable. One of the cardinal among these is the unfortunate tendency of the producers of said technology, to 'improve' them at a rate that is just a hare's breath short of indecorous. There have been cases reported in the public prints that such producers often congregate meetings as per the new model before what would be the current design of said device has even been publicized.

So dire has the situation become, one can scarcely be sure that the model currently in use will yet be in use within the year. Take as an example of the finite existence of a given device the fate of the third generation of the iPhone. The very pinnacle of technology barley three years past, one can no longer purchase the device new, nor take it in to the shop for repairs, many of the tinker shops shrinking from attempting the mending of anything older than the fifth generation and even those can be met with a certain measure of consternation.
It is nearly enough to precipitate one to simply dispense with cellular technology entire entirely and revert to land-based modes of telephonic communications.




Thursday, 29 December 2016

How One Plays the Game


It is a basic truth oft observed that there are few traits more noble in human endeavor than that of sporting spirit. Rare is the man who can honestly claim not to have a quickening of the blood whilst witness to a feat of gaming prowess. Whilst such pronouncements may be easily and popularly made with regard to what might best be thought of as 'practical' gaming pursuits, a similar advocation could also be presented in the case of digitized entertainment forms, many of which have been able to incorporate more practical involvement in their participation.

Digitized interactive pastimes, or 'video-games' to use the common parlance, have been the unwitting targets of ire from all ends of the socio-political sphere. With the apparent ability to to give umbrage to all and sundry, detractors of the medium count among their number Christians of dogmatic and distinctly Conservative disposition and Women's Right Advocates of pronounced Leftist views. Whist in the course of the day-to-day said groups have had a tendency to get along with the approximate ease and harmony of Loyalists and Fenians, the calamitous folly of the use of 'video-games' by the general populace has been a point upon which they have historically agreed. Much as how up until the later portion of the 1990s, these otherwise acrimonious tribes were in curious accord with regard to the damaging and horrid effects of of 'comic books'. Not a shred of corroborating evidence being needed or, in fact, sought, so resolute were they in their convictions

How interesting it is then to note that all such objection ceased and politically driven actions such as the United States Senate Sub-Committee hearing which propagated the implementation of the Comics Code Authority and the trial which lead a young chap by the name of Mike Diana to literally be convicted of drawing, essentially disappeared at the beginning of the 21st century. Which incidentally coincided with the Comic Book Legal Defense Fund making great strides in terms of legal recourse for creators and the San Diego Comic Book Convention - currently abbreviated to 'ComicCon' - becoming one of the premier events of Western Culture. A fascinating coincidence to be sure.