I’ve been wanting to say something about the Design Futures Archaeology blog, and what its author has been doing, but I’ve found it sort of intimidating. For the past few months, Derek Nicoll has been deconstructing the manifesto, one aphorism at a time. Each post is a meditation that uses the manifesto as a jumping off point, but ventures far and wide. He blends theory and observation with accounts of his own varied and extensive experiences, and the result is a cornucopia – dense and fascinating.
There are some themes coming through – in particular, I’ve noticed an insistence on the value of the face-to-face, and on the limits of the distance-mediated, digitally-mediated. Of course (as Derek also notes) we’re no longer usually talking about anything being one or the other – that’s something that is emerging from the ubiquity of our networked devices. As Enriquez reminds us: “mobility … dissolves the boundary between here and there, departure and return, dwelling and travelling” (2011, p.49). But anyway, the limits of particular kinds of mediations seem to be important in these posts, and I get that, especially when questions of power arise:
How does technology, and those who design, own and have power over it, make this a prepared environment for us to work within, live and socialize within and learn within? These are key questions defining who and what you can access, as the idea of when and where you can access disappears with sci-fi, wi-fi and wide-fi.
It would be impossible to summarise even one of Derek’s posts – but I encourage you to check some of them out next time you need a strange, enriching romp.
Enriquez, J. (2011). Tug‐o‐where: situating mobilities of learning (t)here. Learning, Media and Technology, 36(1), pp. 39-53.