Architectural theorist on the success of the suboptimal

Phillip Tabor was one of the highlights of Doors7 for me. His tract: “a space for half-formed thoughts” sounds like it could be describing the ‘blogosphere’, or at a lower-level – the internet’s ‘principle of equal suckitude’ [copyleft Cory Doctorow], or Richard Gabriel’s worse-is-better

[my emboldening]

“four attributes of a simulated ‘space for half-formed thoughts’:

1: Its metaphor is spatial, but its spatial character is not limited by the constraints of real space and physics

2: It contains flowing patterns that reflect incoming data about the world. But we don’t just see these patterns: we sense them as sounds and vibrations; we feel them as wind in hair, taste on tongue, tension in muscles

3: Informational patterns are manifested in varying densities of this smoky space; and

4: We can sharpen the outlines of things, make them harder and clearer. But we’d only do so when we feel our ideas are ready to coalesce

Vagueness is sometimes a virtue, and clarity is sometimes a vice.

“The space for half-formed thoughts” is intriguing, and merits returning to and attempting to concretise it if only for the perversity of trying to do so… It could maybe yield MattW’s ‘the next thing’; indeed it may itself be the ‘next thing’.

» Doors7: Flow: Phillip Tabor: “A space for half-formed thoughts”

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