- Part 1: Hard Rapture
- Part 2: Artificial Enlightenment
- Part 3: Machine Self-Consciousness
- Part 4: Obligatorily Gregarious Apes vs Too-Smart-Weapons
- Part 5: Post-Homo Ludens
- Part 6: Domesticated Bodies
- Part 7: Nobody Believes In Aliens Any More
- Part 8: Slope-Shouldered Code-Geek Capitalist Gods
- Part 9: Conclusion
The first block quote in each post is taken from the artist Tom Friedman's artist statement that he provided for his show at Feature gallery in 2000. I generally hate artist statements (but feel compelled to read them), and try to avoid writing them for my own shows. At best the ones I come across are usually a few paragraphs of boilerplate art-speak (and that is pretty awful). As you will see Friedman's had nothing to do with the artwork in his show, or even art generally. Instead it was a bullet point list that outlined a history of the future. My step-mother once told me: "I've liked Mohammed Ali ever since he said he was like a butterfly." I've loved Tom Friedman ever since I picked up that artist statement ten years ago.
"Well, if droids could think, there'd be none of us here, would there?"; Ray Kurzweil
Ken MacLeod; Uncle Owen
The third set of block quotes comes from Ken MacLeod's book Newton's Wake. MacLeod is my first love when it comes to post-singularity Scottish free-market socialist scifi writers. And while Friedman is ironic and Kurzweil's enthusiasm is unshadowed by doubt (kind of like Freeman Dyson's enthusiasm for biotech neo-pastoralism which unambiguously creeps me out), MacLeod's writings seem to reflect my own ambivalence. He cautions that the singularity, or "the Rapture for nerds" will most likely be sparked by the super rich and the super geek - that we should expect "wankers" not gods.
Stephan Martiniere, Newton's Wake (2004)
"The normal existence of animals is given by the contemporary conditions in which they live and to which they adapt themselves — those of man, as soon as he differentiates himself from the animal in the narrower sense, have as yet never been present, and are only to be elaborated by the ensuing historical development. Man is the sole animal capable of working his way out of the merely animal state — his normal state is one appropriate to his consciousness, one that has to be created by himself."
"Moh Kohn says 'Like Engels said, man's natural environment doesn't exist yet: he has to create it for himself.' And Wilde says, after some chit-chat: 'Man's natural environment is artificial - yeah, I like it.'"