the void

“…when the world is reduced to nothing and we have everything at hand, we’ll be infinitely happy.  I believe just the opposite – and this has already been proven – that we’ll be infinitely unhappy because we will have lost the very place of freedom, which is expanse.  All current technologies reduce expanse to nothing.  They produce shorter and shorter distances – a shrinking fabric.  Now, a territory without temporality is not really a territory. but only the illusion of a territory.  It is urgent that we become aware of the political repurcussions of such a handling of space-time, for they are fearsome.  The field of freedom shrinks with speed.  And freedom needs a field.  When there is no more field, our lives will be like a terminal, a machine with doors that open and close.  A labyrinth for laboratory animals.  If the parceling out of territory – of territories of time – is envisioned like that, according to a strict regulation and not to a chrono-political understanding, there will be nothing left but absolute control, an immediacy which will be the worst kind of concentration.” (virilio, pure war 73)

The question becomes how can we create limits to our conquest of the void.  Does not simply the ability to change something fundamentally change that something, or at least our perception of it?  Does it not become design by the lack of design?  By the fact that it is within the ability of design, and yet not designed.  Does the fact that we chose not to design it make it design?
There are things which are outside the limits of design, things which we can not change.  And then there are things outside the economy of design, which we have chosen not to change based on the amount of energy it would take to accomplish, or once in a while based on aesthetics or a desire to preserve.  We must look as much at what we have chosen not to design as what we have chosen to design.  Because we must see how our choice to not design something affects that something.  Because the ability to create sound changes the silence.  Will there still be a field of freedom if we have the ability for absolute control.
What if we actively work against these limits.  Like the artist who refused to go into any building for a year.  The artist was dragged into jail.  By actively opposing the limits, the stakes are raised and the limits must become stronger.  The question is, did the artist gain more freedom by refusing the limits of design, or did he extend the limits of design to include the exterior?  While anti-information destroys information, maybe just the production of anti-information places it within the realm of information.  How can we produce anti-matter?  Is there any way to keep from assimilating the void?  Is there any way to preserve reality?  I guess the question is, what if we changed the limits of design?

“Hughes was already aping our technical future: the abandonment of the vehicular speed of bodies ofr the strangely impressive one of light vectors, the internment of bodies is no longer in the cinematic cell of travel but in a cell outside of time, which woould be an electronic terminal where we’d leave it up to the instruments to organize our most intimate vital rhythms, without ever changing positions ourselves, the authority of electronic automatism reducing our will to zero… somehow the vision of light moving on a screen would have replaced all personal movement….  The development of high technical speeds would thus result in the disappearance of consciousness as the direct perception of phenomena that informs us of our own existence.” (aesthetics 104)

See Wade Tillett’s wonderful ” self-animator

“To make a railroad round the world is equivalent to grading the whole surface of the planet.”  (thoreau, walden 41)

 Paralyzed man controls computer via brain implant – “We’d like to get them on the Internet and open communications to the rest of the world, and vice-versa.  After that, we’d like for them to use the computer to control their envrironments, turn lights on and off, adjust a bed, call an attendant, turn the TV on or off.  Finally, we hope they will be able to run prosthetic devices, wheelchairs, even prosthetic limbs.”