Tag Archives: Philip K. Dick

Our psychopath Congress

Government shutdown, debt crisis reveal how much GOP has in common with other sociopaths…

Is this to be an empathy test? Capillary dilation of the so-called blush response? Fluctuation of the pupil. Involuntary dilation of the iris?

I believe Philip K. Dick had it right in Do Androids Dream of Electric Sheep? Technology had, in that not-so-distant future, created androids that were nearly indistinguishable from humans. The one thing people had that the Nexus 6s didn’t, the quality that made them essentially human, was empathy. Read more

Michael Vick and the problem with forgiveness

NFL Commissioner Roger Goodell has conditionally reinstated former Atlanta quarterback Michael Vick, who was convicted of running a dogfighting ring in 2007. Vick served 23 months in federal prison, followed by two months of house arrest.

Last Thursday the Philadelphia Eagles answered the question as to which team would sign a convicted dog-killer (there were 32 possible answers to the question, and “none of the above” wasn’t one of them), and in doing so touched off a long-awaited PR war for the souls of their stunned fans. Read more

ArtSunday: the Blade Runner Effect

Last night we watched the Final Cut of Blade Runner again, and if you don’t have this package I can’t recommend it highly enough. 25 years on, Ridley Scott was able to finally re-craft the film as he wanted it originally, and the result is a stunning achievement. Scott has been one of our greatest directors for a very long time, but this may be his finest moment to date.

This viewing (probably my 35th or 40th – I lost count a long time ago) got me to thinking, all over again, about how little the film was acknowledged at the time of its release. Read more

ArtSunday: do electric sheep dream of digital art?

A few weeks ago we showed you a painting by Miro and posed the question: is this art? The consensus opinion seemed to be that sure, I guess it’s art, although I wouldn’t pay a penny for it.

Today we look at digitally generated images and ask the same question. Specifically, have a look at Electric Sheep, my cool new screen saver program. According to the Web site:

Electric Sheep is a free, open source screen saver created by Scott Draves. It’s run by thousands of people all over the world, and can be installed on any ordinary PC or Mac. When these computers “sleep”, the screen saver comes on and the computers communicate with each other by the internet to share the work of creating morphing abstract animations known as “sheep”. The result is a collective “android dream”, an homage to Philip K. Dick’s novel Do Androids Dream of Electric Sheep? Read more

Memorial Day musings: Americans, politicians, and the great species divide

Virek must have seen it too; he screamed, and Baron Samedi, Lord of Graveyards, the loa whose kingdom was death, leaned in across Barcelona like a cold dark rain.
William Gibson, Count Zero

I miss Hunter Thompson. Always, but especially on days like today, where I’m contemplating what the Democratic leadership has done to the sense of relief I felt just a few short months ago when they retook control of Congress by promising to end the occupation of Iraq.

I think that today, as we enter Memorial Day Weekend bent on creating more memorials in Arlington National Cemetery, an argument I’ve been making for some time is more apt than ever. To wit, there’s a divide in America, but it’s not the Left/Right, Blue/Red, Metro/Retro, Conservative/Librul lie that way too many of us have been suckered into believing. Nope, the real divide is Have/Have Not, Top/Bottom, Rich/Poor. Read more