Perpetual Motion Machines

New tech­nolo­gies may ulti­mate­ly evolve far beyond machines “automat­ing” the rec­og­niz­ably human task of dri­ving. Hypothe­ses about “dri­ver­less” cars still pre­sume there will be such a thing as dri­vers and pas­sen­gers, trap­ping us with­in the cur­rent incar­na­tion of our trans­porta­tion sys­tem. Fre­quent­ly applied terms like “auto­mat­ed” and “dri­ver­less” are inad­e­quate in that they con­tin­ue to posit man­u­al­ly pilot­ed vehi­cles as the norm from which the new tech­nolo­gies devi­ate.

Continua, Planes, and False Dichotomies

The prob­lem with call­ing [descrip­tivism and pre­scrip­tivism] part of a con­tin­uüm is that I don’t believe they’re on the same line. Putting them on a con­tin­uüm, in my mind, implies that they share a com­mon trait that is expressed to greater or less­er degrees, but the only real trait they share is that they are both approach­es to lan­guage. But even this is a lit­tle decep­tive, because one is an approach to study­ing lan­guage, while the oth­er is an approach to using it.

Writing a Novel Limited to the 483 Words Spoken by Ophelia

Though the rules and con­straints have become invis­i­ble, because we’re so prac­ticed in using them, they’re there, and their pres­ence makes any piece of writ­ing a col­lab­o­ra­tion between writer and lan­guage. This is just more obvi­ous in such a thing as let me tell you.