Phwww. This week has been dedicated to the UPJ process, this mysterious, this transcendentally beautiful, illuminating and ambiguously ambidextrous rite of salary classification on the basis of work requirements and personal achievements that we need to go through, meek, alert and ready to prove our worth, every year, from now on, as employees of the Finnish university system. This is why we are, what we are, how we are, as the scholars, as the servants of wisdom, sophia, as academics.
Meanwhile, elsewhere in the free world.
Henry Jenkins has participated in the new MacArthur Foundation initiatives and blogs about the white paper where they discuss the concept of distributed cognition, among other important things:
Challenging the traditional view that intelligence is an attribute of
individuals, the distributed cognition perspective holds that
intelligence is distributed across “brain, body, and world”, looping
through an extended technological and sociocultural environment. [link]
All over the world, political systems and worldviews are in crisis, and many people seem to express their political choices in their consumer choices, in clothing or musical taste. Anarchism is presented as one of the few genuine alternatives to global capitalism, and it also fits well with much of the new collective and anti-hierarchical spirit of the ‘information age’ and ‘network society’, apparent in blogs and wikis as new grassroots media. As it happens, Anarkismi.net, the Finnish umbrella website of various anarchist groups also sports a wiki on anarchism. Visiting it today, it displays a front page loaded with wiki spam (“buy darvocet, generic darvocet, order darvocet…”) and comment areas covered with over one thousand porn advertisements. Even while deeply sympathising with philosophical anarchism as the fundamental ‘good life philosophy’, there is something symptomatic in the obvious lack of care or disregard that this wiki displays. As I understand, media and society are rather similar phenomena as you go deep enough. Having a good, open wiki requires similar preconditions like a good, anarchistic society: an active, functional community who actually cares about each other and their surroundings. Not really having that care, you end up with a failed experiment, filth-covered wikis, and streets with broken windows.
The association of Finnish nature photographers organises its annual competition, regularly attracting some top-quality work. The gallery on selected photos is located in here; the winner this year was “Lumisade” (Falling snow) by Esa Mälkönen (here).
I presented a short paper as a keynote in the Medi@terra Gaming Realities conference, inviting international collaboration on mapping the global game cultures — into gathering reliable information on who is playing, what, how, and how much, and perhaps even why. If you are interested, take a look at the version available in my home page, and lets be in contact.
Laura’s birthday party in Näsinneula: sparkling
Originally uploaded by FransBadger.
I have uploaded some new additions of photos both into my Flickr albums and into into www.unet.fi/pics collections; from Tampere (Laura’s birthday in Näsinneula), Berlin (IPerG EB workshop) and Athens (Medi@terra/Gaming Realities conference).
medi@terra on multilayering of land
Originally uploaded by FransBadger.
The tightly packed days of medi@terra/Gaming Realities conference include many interesting presentations about reality and place becoming multiple, mixed, multilayered, hybrid. I’d actually claim that our reality, and lands we inhabit are always this kind of chimeiras; sites half-imagined, half put together by pieces we recognize from elsewhere. Athens is obviously a city to evoke reflections of this kind, pasts, presents and futures colliding constantly on its crowded streets.
I will be travelling — to Athens (Greece) this time; this is where the DiGRA Assembly 2006 and Gaming Realities conference is taking place. It looks promising; check out the programme at: http://www.mediaterra.org/2006/en/conference.html
Open content production is an important part of digital culture and participatory media culture. This night, I watched Elephants Dream, which is an international collaborative production (coordinated from the Netherlands, some Finns also in the core team). The movie is just 10 minutes and more of a technological proof of concept production-wise, rather than a landmark in any artistic sense (mostly this can be taken as a humoristic homage to the Matrix movies). But to have this kind of tools available in the open source is of course a really promising development.