Friendship is Magic

[H]ere are some exam­ples of alter­na­tive group struc­tures; each of them has formed accord­ing to the par­tic­u­lar pres­sures of our cur­rent his­tor­i­cal moment. And though they have dis­parate goals and strate­gies, they share a flex­i­bil­i­ty of com­mand and an empha­sis on imag­i­na­tion. The stan­dard Twit­ter caveat applies: I do not endorse the tac­tics or objec­tives of Al Qae­da or the Bronies, though maybe we could learn a bit about orga­niz­ing from both.

The Cathedral of Computation

Here’s an exer­cise: The next time you see some­one talk­ing about algo­rithms, replace the term with “God” and ask your­self if the sense changes any. Our sup­pos­ed­ly algo­rith­mic cul­ture is not a mate­r­i­al phe­nom­e­non so much as a devo­tion­al one, a sup­pli­ca­tion made to the com­put­ers we have allowed to replace gods in our minds, even as we simul­ta­ne­ous­ly claim that sci­ence has made us imper­vi­ous to reli­gion.