Toward a new paradigm of compassionate digital products.
The original content in this channel is lovingly under copyright & its use is warmly encouraged (with attribution) for educational purposes only.
Please ask me for written consent if you'd like to incorporate this material into a commercial project. I'm chill, just message me here or at email@example.com ❤️
When we talk about compassionate digital objects and this notion of compassion. It’s an objective form of the word. The idea that we can achieve an objective compassion by creating in conformity to nature. I’m not referring to nature in the sense of the trees and the wind and a soft stream. I’m referring to the ambient materials upon which all of existence is built upon, defined from, and functions through. Those materials exist at all scales. Think of gravity. Think of DNA. And this includes our creations, too. Language is an ambient material. So is color. Money. Smiles. The arrow is a great one. What a journey its had!
What is “creating in conformity?”
It’s not an act of mimicry or subservience. It’s about creation that is shaped by these materials. Not shaped to them. And like the water in a stream, we see it slowly influence its environment. Fragments of soil, slowly carved out over millennia.
It’s clear we have no idea what we’re doing. Perhaps we never have. But at the scale that we are now operating at, we are affecting billions of people every single day. Shaping their habits. Their self-identity. Their relationships. Their opinions and their financial stability. Not to mention the ecological implications of our ever expanding digital infrastructure.
We are simply incapable of designing to account for all possible scenarios. We cannot predict the emergent behaviors that will arise. Instead, we can design our digital objects in acknowledgment of this paradigm. With it, not against it. Encourage emergence instead of fearing it, or worse: ignoring it. Offer tools without assumptions. Create incomplete objects that have to be adapted by the individual to function.
The world of niche electronic music equipment is a mostly uncharted reference point for constraint, modularity, interoperability and open formats.
Experiences that create the sense of being in a band or a sports team. Not in terms of the actual activity, but the acuteness of sensation that emerges when you achieve total synchronicity for the briefest of moments with those close to you.
What ecstatic states can we encourage?
What might emerge when we adopt a practice of designing and building Incomplete Objects? That have to be molded by The Individual to function? Like a switch within a circuit. Or a symbiote.
Stigmergy is a consensus social network mechanism of indirect coordination, through the environment, between agents or actions. The principle is that the trace left in the environment by an action stimulates the performance of a next action, by the same or a different agent. In that way, subsequent actions tend to reinforce and build on each other, leading to the spontaneous emergence of coherent, apparently systematic activity.
Stigmergy is a form of self-organization social network. It produces complex, seemingly intelligent structures, without need for any planning, control, or even direct communication between the agents. As such it supports efficient collaboration between extremely simple agents, who lack any memory, intelligence or even individual awareness of each other.
A constellation of models, floating in mid air.
Pick one or compose your own.
Shape it to fit your unique context.