A glossary

  I wrote this for a friend. This overview of asemic horizon’s technical terminology (known as “space opera” to earlier readers) follows an order that’s specific (such that it supports a series of contrasts and comparisons) but not special (in that no particular concept or term is anterior to others).

We live in a society

I. Easily hidden in plain sight in this one-panel are signs of a moment of transcendence. The comic masterfully portrays the self-important internet “patrician” (or the deluded neckbeard who believes himself to be one). But it only achieves this mastery — this capacity for compression: how many nonwhite pixels does

Compression sickness

I.  The flash-fad for Greg Bateson (already subsiding) made me do it. It wasn’t all bad — going there (feedback loops; cybernetics; systems theory; macroprudentiary regulation!) indeed points to hard consequences of our own complication of time in (chronos/tempo/kairos). But the unplanned rhetorical development led to this wallop of a paragraph in

Physique du role

Prelim I think we all need a break from the over-saturated self-referential thing we’re rocking. To this end I want to build out of this music video. (The tradeoff is that you won’t get where we’re going without watching it first.) I. The music of Crystal Castles appears to convey

The Castle

This is a new introduction to this blog. I. In loose fluid text chats I tend to use expressions that are oversimplified on the order of “pears are an axiology”. The underlying point, laboriously conveyed over long stretches of conversation, is that there are theories of which pears are preferable

The magic leap

I.  The presentation of a story is made of two components: the elements of presentation and the element of the story itself. Rigorously speaking, this can easily become a recursive formula (the presentation of the presentation…. of the presentation of the story), and experimental storytellers have long been trying variations

Drawbridges

.

Fooled by convexity xxl

The battle cry of applied mathematics is: all models are wrong, some are useful. This is a barbarously ambiguous creed, and might apply to miniature models (like model trains, which try to reproduce much of the excitement and dynamics of real trains at a fraction of the cost) and instance

We have never been neoliberals

…this is actually false: if I’m one person at work, one person as a parent, one person when drunk and one person when manic, guess what: boom, Arrow’s impossibility theorem applies.

Elitism

I. The outstanding problem of civilization is the hoi polloi. As many other matters that interest us, civilization is an axiological affair. It affirms that certain things are valuable (for example, science) and exposes the valuable means (scientific method) of producing valuable things (scientific works). But (again, for example) science

McKenosha

US politics seems now consumed again a modernistic insurrection. Historical (rather than theoretical) postmodernity is a ruling order of depersonalized and delocalized actors connected by (mostly abstract) business transactions. But the interests of business are, contra Marx, most of the time out of sync with each other; the system of

TikTok

I Why does TikTok come from China? The opening ceremony for the 1980 Moscow Olympics featured a message from space and almost two hours of dances from the manifold peoples of the Soviet world, from Cossack to Khirghiz. The closing ceremony featured a bear-shaped balloon who flew high and then

Guest post: Stronger stronger stronger

One reason I put us through that rambling essay about the I/we voices was to prepare the ground for our first guest post by a friend of the blog who opts to identify himself simply as B. It follows in italic. I didn’t touch up a comma of his text,

Minimaxima

I. (Mirror scene) My twitter bio bears a mangled quote from asemic horizon that witnesses (a phrase is a witness; think of this for a while) to the fundamental distinction between the I and the we voices: it says Theory is, after all, a praxis of intelligibility; and there is

The Game

I. A lot of theory-making is about taking words way too literally — to the end of their meaning, their asemic horizon. If there is any truth to the analytic account of “slips of the tongue”, then language is a buildup of such accidental disclosures. If only for this reason,

Breathe

I. Could you explain Galilean relativity to an anatomically modern human from 25,000 years ago? Galilean relativity is at the core of what natural science defines to be the world. Its threefold tenets: (1) that the world is stable (i.e. it obeys eternal laws), (2) homogeneous (ontically uniform, there being

How to do things with theory

I. In Outwards we have the seminal (if  “more badly-written” than the average AH text) essay on what we’ll keep calling physics — to the dismay of I-fucking-love-science fans and maybe even some scientists. There’s something to the dynamics of theory-making (and not just AH, but philosophy, continental and analytic alike,

Protected: Fooled by convexity

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