Made of people

Andrew Blum writes one of the better explanations of what the heck The New Aesthetic is, anyway: less an avant-garde movement, more a field of inquiry. And also drone fetish.


Speaking of the fuzzy line between art made with technology and art found in technology: @horse_ebooks is made of people. It’s made of people!


Elizabeth Hyde Stevens writes on Jim Henson’s successful merging of art and commerce:

At the end of the Dark Crystal, the gentle race known as “the Mystics” leave their quaint reservation with its sand paintings and wooden bowls and return to the castle. They don’t displace the power-obsessed Skeksis, they do something strange—they merge with them. This occurs at the same time the missing piece fits into the Crystal, which itself is “healed.” The peaceful artists return to the castle, join with the cruel lords who are its current occupants, and the race returns to its proper form; they are whole.

Brian Jay Jones, meanwhile, has written the first major biography of Henson.


Bruce Nussbaum on “creative intelligence,” which seems to be a lot of fakey sounding buzzwords wrapped around some good thoughts on flexible thinking and playing with problems.

Successful mining of meaningful knowledge reveals important patterns and shows you possible paths to the new. It can be rather easy. Play this game—connect the dots of "cheap," "shoes" and "social media" and you get Zappos. Connect "looking for girls," "sharing" and "social media" and you get Facebook. Connect the dots of "cars," "sharing values," "cheap" and "social media" and you get ZipCar. Know your dots and connect them in different ways is what entrepreneurialism is about.

That one time when Oscar Wilde and Walt Whitman (probably) got it on.


Ask A Korean takes down Malcolm Gladwell’s explanation of the Asiana 214 crash as a product of language and culture:

The NTSB report, helpfully, attaches the transcript of the events in the cockpit as an appendix. At p. 180 of the report, there is the entire transcript. And the transcript reveals a striking fact that Gladwell never mentions: 90 percent of the conversation among the three pilots is in English. In fact, the only part of the conversation that happens in Korean is idle banter, talking about how the company does not pay them enough or how Guam's airport must be staffed by former U.S. soldiers who were stationed in Korea.

Also: a followup post, Gladwell’s response, and The Korean’s counter.


President Obama’s remarks on Trayvon Martin:

But I did want to just talk a little bit about context and how people have responded to it and how people are feeling. You know, when Trayvon Martin was first shot, I said that this could have been my son. Another way of saying that is Trayvon Martin could have been me 35 years ago. And when you think about why, in the African- American community at least, there’s a lot of pain around what happened here, I think it’s important to recognize that the African- American community is looking at this issue through a set of experiences and a history that -- that doesn’t go away.

And there are very few African-American men who haven’t had the experience of walking across the street and hearing the locks click on the doors of cars. That happens to me, at least before I was a senator. There are very few African-Americans who haven’t had the experience of getting on an elevator and a woman clutching her purse nervously and holding her breath until she had a chance to get off. That happens often.

And you know, I don’t want to exaggerate this, but those sets of experiences inform how the African-American community interprets what happened one night in Florida. And it’s inescapable for people to bring those experiences to bear.