hibiscustea: (sour/sweet)


I have never been good with change, particularly any sort of large-scale change. It paralyzes me, pins me with indecision and traps me between possibilities. It terrifies me, steals breath from by chest with a soft flutter of feathers in my throat; my breath, and my voice. I become mute, unable to articulate what I want, or don't want, or haven't even considered yet.

Usually, I try to ease myself into it gradually--I'm a cautious person by nature and I try to make sure I've thought of everything before making any sort of decision--but sometimes that simply isn't possible. The world moves too fast; I can't keep pace.

I thought I'd have more time.

I can finish my degree by taking five courses over the summer; of those five, only four are required. Three would be abbreviated three-week-long courses, and two would be two-month long. The four I need all run from May til July, which is why I need the fifth class. The fifth class would run from the start of July until August--and that would give me the three-consecutive months of school needed for loans. The alternative is, of course, to take three over the summer, and then three in the fall (why three when only one would be needed to complete my degree? Because three is the minimum required for student loans). I could be starting my Master's program as early as September. Either way, I will be finished by December, at the latest.

I am destabilized. It seems like no matter what choice I end up making, I must pick-apart the meager stitches I've already knit so as to reassemble these threads in a new city, a new school, and start again.

hibiscustea: (Default)


Que Houxo paints in neon and blacklight


I can't believe that it's already November. Dear Lord. I have no idea where the time has gone, literally. I'm roughly three weeks away from having to hand in my projects, some of which I've made zero progress on. What. I mean. I don't even.

I gave a talk today. I think it went well; at least, it certainly went better than the talk I gave last week. No shaking or crying. Just talking too fast, and not concisely enough. I think it was okay though. I'm glad it's over. I'm glad I won't have to do it again. I know that time is the only thing that will make me a better public speaker, time and practice, but it still terrifies me even when I know (or think I know) what I'm talking about.

We are housing the Tiny Ginger Interloper again. He's going to be with us 'til Sunday(?) I think. I may post pictures.

hibiscustea: (concentration)
Real soldiers love their robot brethren

"One of the psychologically interesting things is that these systems aren't designed to promote intimacy, and yet we're seeing these bonds being built with them."


I have a bizarre fascination and attachment to anything to do with robots. I don't know what it is. I think it has something to do with the formation of consciousness and identity, and the potential for sentience. Or something. I haven't quite thought it out well enough, not yet anyway.

I read a book recently reading is AWESOME--I'd quite forgotten just how much I actually enjoy picking up a good book by Peter Watts called Blightsight, which is all about consciousness, sentience, and identity. Very little about robots. Which is probably good: sad robots make me cry. Anyway, it's an excellent book, I very highly recommend it. Very much a Hard SciFi book, so if that's not your cuppa tea then ... well ... I dunno.

In the Doom Film class today we watched Last Night (1998), the one by Don McKeller. It was quite powerful (well, then again, I think almost anything would seem moving after the pretty dreck of The Day After Tomorrow), and made me consider what I would do if I were told exactly when the world was going to end.

The short answer is, I don't know. The long answer is remarkably like the short. What would you do?
hibiscustea: (Default)
TWO DOWN ONE TO GO. By the time this semester is over I will have written more than 23600 words for school. I am sleeping all day Thursday and there is no way in hell I am getting out of bed.



NYU Student Conducts Most Adorable Robot Experiment Ever


Tisch School of the Arts student Kacie Kinzer created the tweenbot as a kind of art experiment. In her words:
I wondered: could a human-like object traverse sidewalks and streets along with us, and in so doing, create a narrative about our relationship to space and our willingness to interact with what we find in it? More importantly, how could our actions be seen within a larger context of human connection that emerges from the complexity of the city itself? To answer these questions, I built robots.

Zeitgeist

Feb. 23rd, 2009 03:49 pm
hibiscustea: (pause.)
Well, my universe has resumed its shambling march towards some bizarre definition of 'complete'. University has resumed classes, after a week of not-class. I miss not-classes. Not classes were fun to attend. I didn't need to take notes, pay attention or understand the material. It was nice.

Oh well, boo hoo, ho hum; so sad too bad. I will get over it.

This semester is lackluster. Nothing in particular grips me with anything even coming close to fascination. Well, that's not entirely true: German, despite my lack of grammatical correctness and the strange floating verbs the language seems to suffer from in general, is actually quite interesting. There are some incredible words that have no English equivalent. I still don't think (or will ever believe) that I have a head for languages, however, maybe if I just keep bludgeoning myself with the material I'll make it through all right.

I'm tired, though. While reading break was a boon, it wasn't long enough by far. I have the irritating feeling that time is slipping through my grasp at an increasingly faster and faster rate. There's so much to do and so little time in which to do it.

I was talking to [livejournal.com profile] mad_and_crazy the other day about time. We agreed that it seems to go by faster the older we get. My theory is, as a child, we tend to think of time not in terms of clocks or even calenders beyond a sort of vague recognition that these exist, instead clocking our time in terms of events. Birthdays, holidays, vacations, and such. Because these measure duration in large chunks, time seems suspended, almost fixed. I can remember being ten and thinking that my birthday would never come. Last year, I could barely remember the time between that year's birthday and last years (which, of course, is hyperbole, but the point is--so fast!).

As we grow up, emphasis is placed on time. Being on time; in time; in a timely manner. We begin to savor having extra time, spare time, but this is an illusion perpetrated by our devious clocks. There is no time. Just whirling wheels and pins, set to a fixed rhythm. Arbitrary. Impossible.

Let's break all the clocks in the world and see what happens, yes?
hibiscustea: (Breakfast at Tiffany's)
... Quick, does anyone know the physical dimensions of Antonio Gaudi's Casa Mila (aka La Pedrera)?
hibiscustea: (Breakfast at Tiffany's)
"I'm not sure what you mean. I don't know if what you're saying means anything." -- Teodor (Achewood)
Those two sentences pretty much encapsulate my entire morning. Philosophy at 9am? Maybe not such a good idea. An introductory course done in 6 weeks? Definitely maybe not such a good idea.

Oh, it's bizarrely interesting, don't get me wrong, but it's a lot of work to cover in a short amount of time. Or maybe I'm just lazy.

It could very well be that.

Also--in random, trivial news--watched The Family Stone last night; it was certainly odd to be watching a Christmas-set movie at this time of year. Wasn't all that funny, either, I found. Best scene was the brothers' mad dash through the house, with slapping and jacket-pulling. It was a nice jacket. Very tweedy.

And my God. My neck looks diseased. All because someone ( ... you know who you are.) had to use it as a chew-toy for the weekend. Bleh. I need more sleep, obviously.
hibiscustea: (Default)
I like school. I do. I enjoy learning. I enjoy the readings. I enjoy lectures. (No, really. Stop laughing: I can hear you.)

However.

Being at school from 8am til 7:30pm, well, that's stretching it, even for me. And, I don't think the five-and-a-bit hours of sleep I got really helped all that much--though it was totally self-inflicted.

Because my classes ended a while ago, I ended up browsing the site of one of my favorite authors, Peter Watts. The result being that "The Second Coming of Jasmine Fitzgerald" ate my brain. So, I thought I'd share.




The Second Coming of Jasmine Fitzgerald by Peter Watts.



Beside the desk, Russell's printer extrudes a paper tongue. He pulls it free and hands it over.

"So God's a supercomputer at the end of time? And we'll all be resurrected in the mother of all simulation models?"

"Well--" Russell wavers. The caricature seems to cause him physical pain. "I suppose so," he finishes, reluctantly. "In thirty words or less, as you say."



Edit: And, if there is any reason in the world for you to love this man it is because he has nearly his complete back-catalog up at his site, for free reading.

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hibiscustea

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