Simulacra of control

simulation & exactitude in science

  • whole earth catalog (steward brand)
  • illich: earth from space, photo of the human egg - thresholds

simulation & virtualization (graber & eno long now talk)

we were dreaming of flying cars decades ago, but now we're still nowhere near that, but instead retreating to video games and sci-fi movies (virtualisation).

and of course, cf utopia-of-rules

magic & science

magic and science are but twins born of the same impulse to control

wishing for ever more control over the wide-open future, we retreat into the self-contained games we've made up for ourselves: second life, whole earth simulations, novels, mathematics. Each can be its own specialised form of truth-telling in a system where the odds are stacked in favour of the propagation of falsehoods. Space to gulp a breath of air, where the very atmosphere has been stolen from us and turned into a false vacuum. And simultaneously, outside the open windows of our computer consoles, portals to our safe space; outside the shut windows of our abodes, walled moats for climate control, the sweltering, smokey, and somehow at once inundated reality of Nature-turned-extremist roils on.


utopia-of-rules Graeber, David. 2015. The Utopia of Rules: On Technology, Stupidity, and the Secret Joys of Bureaucracy. Melville House Publishing. ↩︎ 1