i’m psychic probably

Our game was not so much an exercise of cybernetic interconnectivity as it was a demonstration systematic predetermination. The answers to each question dictated the question the player was asked next, ultimately leading to an essentially arbitrary set of conclusions.

“As the order of approximation is increased, the amount of context for each symbol is increased, and the contextual constraints (dependent probabilities) have a chance to operate. As The order of approximation is increased, the messages we can construct become more and more familiar, reasonable, meaningful. The more we permit contextual restraints to operate, the better are our chances of producing a message that might actually occur in English.”

This seems to me how human understanding works, but in that case the variables would be time, experience and social and institutional conditioning. The reason that computers are efficient is that they traffic only in quantitative assessments and are not capable of qualitative assessment. How can we make our system of measurement liberated from qualitative assessments? Will dataism give rise to a new informatic language? Can we prevent the practice of collecting information from being used to oppress and exploit people? Can we redraft exchange to eliminate currency as a mediator? Can we eliminate all mediators? Probably not, but that would be cool.

I understand this sort of verbal context as a means of predetermination, essentially how I would define affect.

Affect is conflated human-ness so that we see ourselves not primarily as the flesh and blood matter, the intricate biological machinery that we are, but as sets of opinions and emotions dictated by our positions and labels and histories.

So to talk about that point of conflation I’ll talk about 

Representation and Synecdoche, synecdoche being when the part is a stand in for the whole.

A phenomenon has taken place wherein the aesthetic properties of things have become a stand in for what they are. This poses an ethical dilemma if we define ethics like Spinoza –  “To move in an ethical direction, from a Spinozan point of view, is not to attach positive or negative values to actions based on a characterisation or classification of them according to a pre-set system of judgment. It means assessing what kind of potential they tap into and express.” (massumi) 

In futurity and ethics they introduce this idea of affect creating something new, something essentially a-human. Deleuze and Guattari tell us, “affects are the becoming inhuman of man.” 

Foucault discusses this phenomenon by telling the story of Don Quixote, who exists as only affect, only a catalogue of his influence. A more contemporary example would be Artificial Intelligence, entities that are a product of their programing alone, learning to the extent of the data that is available to them. 

The ethical dilemma arises when the jumps cannot be traced. When the aesthetic metaphor effectively means nothing its hard to qualify anything. 

“The more inhuman any series of affective relations makes us, the less attached we are to classification in its majoritarian sense, and to oppression. The inhuman is independent of opposition. It is neither anti- nor non- but, following Guattari, more appropriately understood as a-human.” Maccormack

This is the idea of a verbal context giving way to what they were calling total context. However that necessitates a relinquishment of control and an ability to override self interest- to abandon ownership.

The chaos of deterritorialization is only frightening in a historical vacuum, or in simpler terms it is an issue of alienation. The fear of chaos is a result of a systemic material denial, (this is the same power dynamic exhibited in abusive relationships, in capitalistic organizations of labor, and of course slavary) an alienation from our own bodies. Chaos can instead be understood better as wilderness.  There is a consensus that this type of vacuum necessitates a radical shift in public understanding and public operations, when perhaps we have already arrived upon it.

The construction of the human condition is that there is an inherent deficiency felt by all people that must be satisfied by external means. The (mis)conception of this deficiency is a semantic problem. As the modes of communication exponentially increase in velocity, semantic differences created by space and time are being collapsed into what is essentially noise. Only after the total collapse of these semantic differences can we begin to see the ultimate underlying signal: Desire. This desire is exactly the same feeling that was previously understood as deficiency. When we experience desire we understand that desire as a lack or a void that we must satisfy- when we are hungry we must eat. But what if that desire is not in fact a manifestation of a void, what if it is just a mechanism of momentum? What if what we are understanding as desire is the purely biological force to move forward- to maintain life? It is a functional electrical signal that communicates to or physiology what would be in our collective best interest, A set of instructions whispered in our dna. What if this power is derived from movement alone, the way that electrons power a battery by moving back and forth in search of their own atomic fulfillment?