2022 02 13

Did a bunch of cleaning in the morning and other simple logistical things that I had meant to do. Sat with my coffee and also enjoyed just reading various articles for a while too. Spent much of the day enjoying the snowfall outside while making a presentation about a research paper for a meeting this week. It’s wild how we went from 60 degree weather yesterday back to today’s Winter.

I was revisiting this article about the IDF and how they deconstruct spaces to reuse them to their purposes. It’s all inspired by postmodernist theory which I think just couches it in some weird intellectual theory thats completely unnecessary - it seems to me that its just a way of subverting the enemy’s expectations and utilizing a space differently is just a way of doing that. Nothing particularly postmodernist about that as you’re still relying on truths about the world to make that happen. This article does a good job of describing the horrors that the everyday occupants of these homes experience when the IDF literally explodes through their walls because they have “deconstructed space”. A tangible evil manifestation of postmodernism in reality for the many affected by this “walking through walls” who are just trying to live their life.

I think this postmodernist idea of thinking about space is at least right that thinking about physical spaces differently can be very useful, but I would argue against postmodernism in that because of objective realities there are better ways to utilize spaces in certain ways. Imagine you want to have a space to is conducive to good social interactions when having guests over for a party. Imagine one setup where its literally an office with cubicles in number equal to the number of the guests, or one in which the room is arranged to have little enclaves of seating for a limited number of people, which are then surrounded by open space. The answer seems obvious. I think intentional design of a space can be very beneficial into creating special experiences within that space. MIT’s Radiation Lab, Bell Labs, and Xerox PARC are all examples off the top of my head that were unique spaces that led to very special events. The spaces seemed to contribute to the productivity and idea generation at those places. I think we should be trying to understand that and now how to use spaces in a warzone.

Daily Listening

Pretty much just listened to this plunderphonics album from yesterday on loop all day.

Daily Reading

In a bit of an intermediate phase. I ended up deciding to read two books that my advisor recommended quite a while ago as they’ve piqued my interest but I never made the time to read them. I’m changing that now! The Rings of Saturn by W. G. Sebald, and On The Move by Oliver Sacks.