Tuesday, November 27, 2018

Occupy University

OPDX - Occupy Portland
Those of you looking for Occupy University (OU) have come to the right place.  I've been out recruiting faculty, as I did when we staged a non-virtual OPDX in downtown Portland, in the same place where WWI vets staged their March to Washington.

That led to the DC Hooverville which General MacArthur destroyed, in a misplaced show of bravado (a form of friendly fire).

In the faculty lounge, one discussion is whether animation, both 2D and 3D, constitutes a form of "coding" or not.  This are the kinds of nitpicky debate one expects in Faculty World.

Clearly the art of television programming, the sequencing of shows to fill dead air space, is a kind of programming.  Think "programme" when it comes to theater.

English makes a big point of not using "programme" to mean "program", obscuring the fact that source code scripts actually orchestrate and direct platform action, much as a play does, or a musical score.  English is somewhat (horse and) buggy, we all know that.

The word "code" is likewise ambiguous, as we have "codes of conduct" at geek events, which tend to be treated like Codes of Hammurabi, meaning they're enforced, with transgressions confessed or uncovered.  That's "code as law" one might say, where "obedience" is a keyword.  However "code" also means what computers execute directly (we could say "obey" but usually don't for some reason).

If you think the bottomline is "it's all semantics" you're correct.  "There's semantics, and there's nothing" is about as helpful as my other dictum "There's science fiction, and there's nothing."

Both are meant to emphasize the universality of the leading term, in contrasting them with nothing.  The dialectic goes away at that point, but then tautologies provide no traction.

Tautologies are more about emphasizing and underlining a grammar, and show more than say.  They're not about making empirical claims so much as delineating the boundaries of sense-making.

This is what Wittgenstein meant when he said his philosophy was not about stating theses, as if it did so, they'd by of the kind no one could disagree with.  In delineating sense, one borders on nonsense, by definition.