I just emailed this to a bunch of people. I'm so glad someone made this comic!
Yes, this is great. Filed under: why politics is broken
“Scenius” is a term coined by musician and producer Brian Eno to counter “The Lone Genius Myth,” or the idea that innovation in art and culture comes from a few Great Chosen Ones. When Eno draws what the traditional model of genius looks like, he uses the example of the symphony orchestra, with God or the Muse at the very top of the triangle, and on descending levels, the composer, the conductor, the musicians, and, finally, the audience listening:
He then draws other organizations in our society that traditionally have hierarchical models:
When he gets to “scenius,” or what he calls the communal form of genius, he draws this:
Here’s what I wrote about it in my book, Show Your Work!:
There’s a healthier way of thinking about creativity that the musician Brian Eno refers to as “scenius.” Under this model, great ideas are often birthed by a group of creative individuals—artists, curators, thinkers, theorists, and other tastemakers—who make up an “ecology of talent.” If you look back closely at history, many of the people who we think of as lone geniuses were actually part of “a whole scene of people who were supporting each other, looking at each other’s work, copying from each other, stealing ideas, and contributing ideas.” Scenius doesn’t take away from the achievements of those great individuals: it just acknowledges that good work isn’t created in a vacuum, and that creativity is always, in some sense, a collaboration, the result of a mind connected to other minds.
What I love about the idea of scenius is that it makes room in the story of creativity for the rest of us: the people who don’t consider ourselves geniuses. Being a valuable part of a scenius is not necessarily about how smart or talented you are, but about what you have to contribute—the ideas you share, the quality of the connections you make, and the conversations you start. If we forget about genius and think more about how we can nurture and contribute to a scenius, we can adjust our own expectations and the expectations of the worlds we want to accept us. We can stop asking what others can do for us, and start asking what we can do for others.
To put it even more simply: Genius is an egosystem, scenius is an ecosystem.
Our world is an ecosystem in which our only real chance at survival as a species is cooperation, community, and care, but it’s being lead by people who believe in an egosystem, run on competition, power, and self-interest.
This was the message of the great feminist and pacifist Ursula Franklin, who said:
The dream of a peaceful society to me is still the dream of a potluck supper. The society in which all can contribute, and all can find friendship. Those who bring things, bring things that they do well. [We must] create conditions under which a potluck is possible.
When you think about your family, your friends, your neighborhood, your office, your city, your country, your world… are you operating as an ecosystem or an egosystem?
Which model we choose to operate under will determine the quality of our lives, and, arguably, our survival.
dear abby column
written using a predictive text user interface
source: all dear abby columns tagged ‘teens’
animated by jamie loftus
method: program supplied 15 word options for me at each step. i wrote sentences a word at a time, then used my favorite full sentences to make the column. the animator jamie loftus then interpreted the results.
Q: dear abby im a teenager because i have become mopey and im afraid something is wrong with my 18-year-old twin sons who have been having unprotected sex in california.
A: i receive letters from individuals who have been getting stoned with their daughters as a way of trying to be more interested in their lives. i think thats not the right attitude. it is important to be ashamed of the members of your family.
Q: dear abby i have been divorced for more than 20 minutes and i have become depressed and i want to go back to the way it was just a few hours ago.
A: if you are feeling depressed ask yourself this: is something wrong with your feelings? is something wrong with you? should you have a serious emotional turmoil thats going to help you feel unsafe? your parents should decide what is the reason for the way you are experiencing all this young people stress. your mother may be able to get a counselor at your school that is sad to talk to.
Q: dear abby please help me figure out what i should do about my feelings. im in love with my friend who is 72 with a job at the hospital and my mom is cheating on me with my dad.
A: strongly you should force your mother to be your friend. if she doesnt take care of your feelings you can order her to make you feel like a particular genre of music. when she finally pulls out of the family your father will become pregnant with you and you will be born.
Q: dear abby im afraid of the car dear abby im having trouble sending pictures of my hair to the police dear abby i want a job please give me a job.
A: you have been diagnosed with the problem of the internet. you have been caught in the dark of a mental illness and your feelings are experiencing so much emotional pain. you are going through a phase of something in a situation of the internet.
Henderson Island is a 14.4 square mile uninhabited landmass in the South Pacific Ocean. Recent studies have revealed that this area has the highest density of plastic that has washed up onshore of any area on the globe. It is estimated that the island’s shores now contain 37.7 million items of debris that weigh a total of 17.6 tonnes.
Source imagery: DigitalGlobe
There are books on the wall, a table in the middle of the room, a plant, maybe a floor lamp or two. But something doesn’t feel right in this room, like it’s a set. Suddenly, a gigantic hand reaches into the frame, revealing that the room was indeed a set built entirely in miniature form. The chopping board is maybe the size of a pinky; the knife slightly smaller. This is the world of Japanese miniature enthusiast and YouTuber ‘Joken’ aka AAAJoken, or triple-A Joken.
Currently a member of the YouTuber management agency UUUM, Joken got his start by introducing toys for kids and creating stop motion animations using those toys. But since 2014 he’s created over 200 videos on a YouTube channel called Miniature Space. In it, he creates all kinds of miniature Japanese meals like tempura and okonomiyaki, but also everyday foods like spaghetti carbonara and corn dogs.
The channel currently has over 1.2 million subscribers. And many of the videos have views in the hundred-thousand range; some in the millions. It’s hard to verbalize what exactly we find so mesmerizing and satisfying about these videos. (Heck, we even have a sub-category dedicated to the art of miniatures.) Kelley Kitely, a mental health expert based in Chicago, suggests that control is behind our undeniable appeal for things shrunken to a fraction of their normal size: “It can give you a sense of control when we’re able to fit an entire scene into what feels like, the palm of our hands,” she explains.
But for me, another joy comes from imagining the meticulous planning that goes into each set. And then seeing the creative substitution that is also required. For example, in his tempura video Joken substitutes shrimp with sakura shrimp, a species that grows to about 4-5cm. In his okonomiyaki video he substitutes cabbage for its miniature equivalent: a single Brussel sprout.
Of course then again there’s the other theory: tiny things are just damn adorable.
Oh, some of these are really useful analogies!
Fiction: “It’s either a short story or a novel. There’s no such thing as a novella.”
Subatomic particles: “Now they’re saying they discovered ‘tetraquarks’ and ‘pentaquarks’. How many combinations of quarks are there? I can’t even keep up these days. What ever happened to just talking about good old atoms?”
Cats: “A Manx is not a cat. Cats are defined as having tails. Maybe it’s a koala.”
Ice cream: “Avocado is not a valid ice cream flavor because I’ve never heard of it and it does not appeal to me.”
Language: “I don’t care what linguists say, I know a dialect when I see one, and Pennsylvania Dutch English is not a dialect.”
Water: “Water is H20. Ice might parade around pretending to be something different, but we all know that it’s also H20 and therefore also water. It’s chemistry.”
Colors: “The cultural imposition of boundaries on a color gradient has nothing to do with it. A rainbow has seven colors: red, orange, yellow, green, blue, purple, and another kind of purple.”
Murder: “If you think murder is just the unlawful and premeditated killing of one person by another, then how do you explain the fact that animals murder each other all the time in nature?”
Doctors: “You can’t just put on scrubs, go to medical school for eight years, pass a licensing examination, and gallivant around calling yourself a doctor. You’re either born a doctor or you’re not.”
Heat: “Careful, that compound is rich in phlogiston. Oh, sorry, ‘kinetic energy.’ You have to be politically correct these days.”
Sex: “The missionary position is the natural sexual position. People are genetically predisposed to it.”
Politics: “‘Libertarian’? Stop trying to be a special snowflake. You’re a Republican or a Democrat, end of story.”
Fields of Thought: “I don’t believe in quantum mechanics because some people on the internet say things about it that I find outrageous.”
Theater: “I’m not an actor. I’m really Hamlet. And I don’t care if they kick me off the set, I’m not calling you imposters Rosencrantz and Guildenstern!”
Movies: “Sean Connery is really James Bond because I’ve seen him be James Bond a bunch of times. I think Daniel Craig is just dressing up and pretending to be James Bond, though.”
I am not sure what I just watched
I ❤️ love these
written using a predictive text interface
source: flow beehive instruction manual
method: chose a word from 15 options at each step. set favorite whole sentences to images.
for optimal beekeeping, book a beekeeping journey before you put bees in your jurisdiction.
insert screws on each side of your yard or rooftop or your window. cap the front of the hive when appropriate and remove the crystallised honey from the prevailing frames of play. the honey flows out of a warm box on the front of this manual.
to reset the mechanism of blotchy beehive boxes, affect a great sunny position until you are going rectangular. the bees will create a gallon of contents that you will probably find instructional.
some bees can liquefy humans by inserting a severe bit of honey in their water hose. some bees cannot get injured and will return for your neighbours when you do not have relevant reactions. some bees are wild with their wax of the box.
so that bees cannot escape your super hive or disturb local amateur state primary industries, you should push no nectar greater than your neighbours. this is particularly important to consider when neighbours are out foraging in the northern hemisphere for northerly honey.
if you suspect your bees are dangerous to consider, you can open the gap between humans and pets etc. leave a little bit of honey in hot position until it is the standard langstroth super queen. bees will be attracted to the original site of children.
soaked in warm weather, your neighbours harvest every last drop of your new body.
Google reader. Never forget.
Some of the best things ever seen or used on the web can’t be saved. They’re already gone. These are some of them, nominated by Kottke readers.
Google Reader. On the one hand, Google kind of ruined RSS, up until then the best distribution method for serial content, by turning it into a product. At the end, some of the best RSS readers weren’t even RSS readers, just frontends for Google Reader, which handled all the resource-intensive work.
On the other hand, Google Reader was a really wonderful community. It had a lightweight social graph component, but it was really oriented around news and stories and blog updates that people shared. Everything that people wanted online comments to be, Google Reader was. And when it ended, it took all of that away, leaving social media networks — which were really never designed to do content distribution — as the only game in town. I honestly don’t know if we’ve ever recovered.
Geocities. Geocities was a lot of people’s first experience making and reading home pages, putting their lives, personalities, contact information, getting email addresses, and anything else they wanted to share out on the web. The “cities” conceit made it sortable and browsable: they weren’t quite geographical and weren’t quite thematic, but a weird combination of the two. It got bought by Yahoo, back when Yahoo was buying and blending everything, and went the way of all such things.
Now Geocities exists only in Japan, but, like a lot of “first websites,” you can emulate it if you want using Glitch. As Anil Dash writes, “millions of people created their own websites in the era before today’s social networks took over. Learning to tweak HTML to create a GeoCities page, or to customize CSS to make a MySpace page look perfect, was a rite of passage for the first 10 or 15 years of the web.”
Think Secret was an early tech blog focused on Apple, back when Apple was very far from the biggest company in the world. Writing and reading about it, especially rumors about new products, was just a weird obsession for a handful of people. Anyways, Think Secret and its editor Nick “de Plume” Ciarelli got sued for violating trade secrets, and Think Secret was shut down as part of a settlement right as the iPhone was turning Apple into the company everybody was talking about all of the time. Things break another way, and that site’s worth millions of dollars today. Then again, that didn’t save Gawker — so who knows.
Television Without Pity practically invented the genre of TV episode recaps, starting with Dawson’s Creek. Now they’re everywhere! It got bought by NBC in 2007 and shut down in 2014, but supposedly it’s coming back.
We’ll see. Nope, turns out it’s just the shell of the website; TWOP won’t running new material after all. But the founders of TWOP went on to start previously.tv. (Thanks, @adrienneLaF, @michelet.)
Nothing lasts forever on the World Wide Web. Even death.
Update: So many people, after this story went live, answered “what about Suck.com?” that I had to make an update.
Reading Suck is bizarre now, because on the one hand, its wry, teasing, sweetly cynical voice has shaped so much of what we know of the web, but its style is actually quite different. It’s like reading Don Quixote and realizing that Cervantes’s book somehow contains, in miniature, every novel that came after it, but that it is also somehow older and stranger and more imaginative than all of them. Also, that every tech or media hype or hustle is exactly the same as one that happened twenty-odd years before it. This is why reporters who’ve been covering Silicon Valley forever have such a twisted sense of humor.
Anyways, the archive still exists; the best way to get it, in my opinion, is the Suck Again email newsletter, which posts every instance of Suck twenty years after its original publication date. Suck is dead; long live Suck.Tags: best of the web
Beautiful! Have also walked up Mount Lofty and can confirm it is pretty from the ground, too.
Check out this awesome drone shot of the Botanical Garden in Mount Lofty, Australia! The garden is situated on 240 acres on the eastern slopes of Mount Lofty in the Adelaide Hills. The garden includes plants from all around the globe, including South America, China, East Africa, New Zealand, South East Asia and North America.
Found on: From Where I Drone
Photo by: Bo Le
These are always amazing!
New The Secret Knots comic.
Some of the people in the convention audience are Patreon supporters!
That first gif!
Google Earth’s Incredible 3D Imagery, Explained
Latest episode of Nat & Friends gives insight into making the contemporary Google Earth and its highly impressive capture of terrain (and arguably the highest profile example of computational photography):
Google Earth is the most photorealistic, digital version of our planet. But how?! Where do the images come from? How are they they put together? And how often are they updated? In this video, learn about the pixels, planes, and people that create Google Earth’s 3D imagery.
Watch these 15,524 dominoes fall for 5mins. Impressive.
Terrifying armoured spiders
This is tremendously pleasing
© elena belmann - 3d qr code - 2011
"Some adventures are so small, you hardly know they’ve happened. Like the adventure of sharpening your pencil to a perfect point, just before it breaks and that little bit gets stuck in the sharpener. That, I think we will all agree, is a very small adventure. Other adventures are so big and last so long, you might forget they are adventures at all – like growing up."
— Anne Michaels, The Adventures of Miss Petitfour