From Rebecca Solnit’s The Faraway Nearby
The Danish-Jewish explorer Peter Freuchen was twenty years old his first winter in the arctic and bursting with vitality and enthusiasm for the other world he’d entered. He volunteered to stay alone on the edge of the ice sheet in Pustervig northeastern Greenland for the duration of the dark winter of 1906-1907. A few other men were there at the beginning, in a stone and timber house built for the purpose, about nine feet by fifteen feet. Freuchen’s task was to go out every day and take weather measurements on the mountain, which sounds easy enough until you factor in that it was dark most of that time and extraordinarily cold, and that the wolves that ate his seven dogs were deeply interested in him as well.
It was so cold that even inside his cabin, even with the small coal stove, the moisture in his breath condensed into ice on the walls and ceiling. He kept breathing. The house got smaller and smaller. Early on, he wrote, two men could not pass without brushing elbows. Eventually after he was alone and the coal—“the one factor that had kept the house from growing in upon me”—was gone, he threw out the stove to make more room inside. (He still had a spirit lamp for light and boiling water.) Before winter and his task ended and relief came, he was living inside an ice cave made of his own breath that hardly left him room to stretch out to sleep. Peter Freuchen, six foot seven, lived inside the cave of his breath.
“If you could limit a man’s wants it might be called ‘labor saving,’ but as there are no limits to his wants, the machinery really increases the power of production.” That is, the industrial world wants more goods, not more time, and so the machinery doesn’t increase freedom and leisure, it increases production and consumption.Rebecca Solnit building on a quote from Leland Stanford.
Everybody talks about disruption now," George Gilder, a technology writer and one time business partner of Christensen’s, says. "Clayton inserted that word in the mind of every CEO in technology. Everywhere you go, people explain that they’re disrupting this or they’re disrupting that. Every big company now tries to disrupt itself all the time, and it’s not clear to me that it’s always a good thing — companies that have a good business may prematurely disinvest from it because they see this inexorable process that Clayton describes.Larissa MacFarquhar, “When Giants Fail”
Most rock journalism is people who can’t write, interviewing people who can’t talk, for people who can’t read.Frank Zappa
But as we as a society begin to get comfortable with the concepts, we can tolerate more complexity. Simplicity is always important, but it becomes relatively less important over time.From There Will Be No Accounting for (Other People’s) Taste in Tablets
A collaboration between Julius von Bismarck and Julian Charriere. The artists dyed 35 pigeons, using a «Pigeon Apparatus» that trapped and sprayed the birds with non-harmful dyes. Once dyed this new “tropical birds” were released once again to mingle with the others, creating a somehow exotic scenario in the middle of this year’s Venice Biennale.
via After the Circle
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