If this is the first post you’re reading from me, I have two things to say. One, I am really sorry. Two, I hope we never meet in real life … Continue reading Why I constantly do weird things : The internet makes me!
I woke up today startled by the outlandish sound of my alarm. As I stretch my hands to reach my phone—I wish I could snooze it for a while more. I can, at this point, trade in anything for an iota more of sleep—just another hour maybe. This attempt of escaping reality met a tragic end as I look at the time and realise it is almost 10:30 which isn’t great because the alarms were initially set for 7 in the morning. I grab my phone, peep into the notification bar — 10 unread messaged and 3 missed calls and then I glare at the ultra low battery. I left the songs on all night again, didn’t I? Of course I did, I can hear some indistinct music playing from my headphones.
I–of course–grab it and snap it on my head till the familiar song starts making its words audible.
Tomorrow I’ll be quicker
I’ll stare into the strobe light
flickerAnd afloat I’ll stay
But I’m quite alright hiding today
It was short lived though, the same outlandish music that I had for the morning alarm starts blaring out of my phone—yes, it’s also my ringtone. Abhi Calling.
Abhi : Where have you been, it’s been forever since I’ve been—
Me : —I know, I know. I just—Well, I—
Abhi : You just woke up didn’t you?
Me : —well—Actually
Abhi : Come on man, you should sleep early, your lifestyle isn’t healthy—and definitely not sustainable in long term. Anyway—I was asking, we can deal with that later, when are you leaving?
Me: As soon—actually, I am leaving in ten mins. I will share my live location with you?
Abhi : Sure, give me a call when you reach?
Me : What’s the point of sharing live—okay—fine, I’ll give you a call.
I brush my teeth while simultaneously trying to book a rickshaw to his place. As my feet alight from the Rickshaw and make my way to Abhi’s house I realise that I have an enormous amount of syllabus left to cover for my exam that’s coming up in one day. I am so screwed
I hear the cigarette crackling as I pass the lighter to Abhi who’s sitting right next to me, on this beautiful balcony, god I hoped that we could manage to get a place with this view when we start working. I am staring at the never ending forest–which was actually a college campus–and hope that one of the peacock just show up. Sitting there in middle of the forest and flexing.
“Do you think start-up’s are a bubble?” Abhi says breaking me out of my thoughts about peacock.
“Who are what now?” I respond
“Startups. Bubbles. Yesterday I came across this one startup which pays a shit tonne for –well, a generalist CS fresher. That doesn’t make sense” He says
“Yeah, that’s true–though–to be very fair, I don’t think he or the company plans on keeping him there for longer” I say
“–like they expect him to switch for the next highest paying offer”
“Yes, I mean, I don’t know anything, but don’t you think startups hire aggressively till they have a stable product–someone to build that product”
He nods, I am not sure if he is convinced, I am not sure if I am convinced!
Tomorrow I’ll be faster
I’ll catch what I’ve been chasing after
And have time to play
But I’m quite alright hiding today
“I have to leave now–will pick up my sister and then come back” he says as he puts off his cigarette
“-Wait, tell me where the coffee is, I’ll have some coffee and then study”
“You sure you’ll study na?”
It was an edifying experience when I came across this concept, this term in historiography–this very peculiar word which seems like something straight out of a teenagers journal. Dark Ages
But–Before we move into that–story time!
Colin Morgan, who’s playing Merlin in BBC’s show with the same name, walks into a room with his charming ebullience and for a minute I got distracted–distracted by what he was wearing. The scarf? The well tailored dresses? and the shoes!
I am no costume designer, let alone a historian, but something about that made me wonder what are the chances that–the outfits would have even existed during the 5th and 6th century (period when Arthur was supposedly the King of Camalot)
I did what I do–googled it away.
Turns out, we don’t know! Well, maybe we do. Before I could dive deep into it, I came across the term “Dark Ages” and was thrown off my trail. Now I had something else to obsess over.
Dark Ages : Period after the decline of Roman Empire. One Italian Scholar Petrach referred to this time as “Dark Age” because of the lack of records which contrasted with the previous Roman settings . I flipped my shit over this, you gotta be kidding me right?
My roommate was in my room with me, so I tried to keep my reactions impassive, though every single bit of me was trying to grasp this news. For someone who’s seen the age of information overload and a generation obsessed with documenting every bit of their life, this concept was absolutely mind boggling.
There was a period in human history that we have no surety about. We aren’t aware about the events that took place. Historians and Archaeologist are still trying to figure out more stuff so that the pieces can be put in place. It is also referred as intellectual depression. INTELLECTUAL DEPRESSION. I have no idea how this information is something I am learning now. NOW.
Dark Ages Reimagined.
Not sure if every generation thinks this, but we certainly have gotten our fair share of tortuous socio-political timeline. Humanitarian too in-fact, but let’s look over that lately. The stygian word which can be re-contextualised in so many ways, though, for some reason I am at a loss of words right now.
Ever since I heard the term information overload, I have been terrified of it, which is pretty strange for someone working in Machine Learning because this excessive data is the reason the field is progressing at the lightning rates that we can see now. I am talking more on a personal level though. We have sooo much information at our disposal, that it just somehow feels like it’s not enough. Recently, I got five kindle books because I though I wasn’t reading enough, but realised I have some thousands of unread books that I should be finishing first. There are studies that work on mitigating information overload in social media and send alerts .
The information is so much, and it’s so confusing to figure out the right statergy to consume the content that sometimes, this might be overwhelming. Are we facing the problem of over-documenting?
In information overload situations, a decision-maker faces what Herbert Simon called “a wealth of information [which] creates a poverty of attention and a need to allocate that attention efficiently among the overabundance of information sources that might consume it”Information overload in the information age: a review of the literature from business administration, business psychology, and related disciplines with a bibliometric approach and framework development 
Where to go?
I don’t speak about this with asperity, but there are times when I wonder why do we have to consume everything that’s out there. I mean dark ages are a mess for historians but for someone who fantasises about the idea of having an essentialist lifestyle but spectacularly fails at it–having little, but only essential information at your disposal sounds comforting.
I don’t think I am going to starve myself of information, in-fact, I want to consume more, but the only difference is that now I want to be slightly more careful about the things I consume as they affect my life and thoughts closely.
- Thompson, Bard (1996). Humanists and Reformers: A History of the Renaissance and Reformation. Grand Rapids, MI: Erdmans. p. 13. ISBN978-0-8028-6348-5. Petrarch was the very first to speak of the Middle Ages as a ‘dark age’, one that separated him from the riches and pleasures of classical antiquity and that broke the connection between his own age and the civilization of the Greeks and the Romans.
- Marc-André Kaufhold, Nicola Rupp, Christian Reuter & Matthias Habdank (2019) Mitigating information overload in social media during conflicts and crises: design and evaluation of a cross-platform alerting system, Behaviour & Information Technology, DOI: 10.1080/0144929X.2019.1620334
- Roetzel, P.G. Bus Res (2019) 12: 479. https://doi.org/10.1007/s40685-018-0069-z
Generate Random words with meaning that have to be used in the article that I write. Helps with my shitty vocabulary, takes away the decision fatigue of selecting the word. You can check out the implementation and read more about it here
– Edifying Enlightening
– Ebullience The Quality Of Lively Or Enthusiastic Expression Of Thoughts And Feelings
– Comportment Behavior; Bearing
– Flip Sarcastic, Impertinent, As In Flippant: A Flip Remark
– Impassive Revealing No Emotion
– Asperity Harshness Of Tone Or Manner
– Stygian Gloomy; Dark
Be it music or painting, there always seems to be a gatekeeping culture when it comes to admiring art. The movies, exhibitions, abstract painting and things which look extremely daunting to start with. Art, it’s as vague as the word gets, it can be anything from arcane texts of an author to contemporary avant garde music that’s equally tortuous.
Françoise comparison of the Kadir Nelson’s cover art to Norman Rockwell’s Art connoisseur made me wonder, what is it really like to admire art.
Admiring Art ? I don’t think I am the right person to answer what this means, I mean I am the resident pretentious hipster trash;of course I have fantasized about sipping wine and looking at art, being an apostate to capitalism, criticising the privileged while still mingling with the elite–a resident pretentious hipster trash you guys!
Although, I have also felt really out of place whenever I’ve tried to visit places like art museums. I feel like I don’t know enough, like everyone around me has this inner sensor that understands and has the ability to understand stuff where as I am just replicating the emotions.
I think that’s why looking at alternate art like street art or hip-hop as a form of expression feels liberating. These recalcitrants aim to extirpate the bounds to expression set by conventional artists.
Though something about even this approach doesn’t sit well with me. I just feel like not liking something which I perceive as elitist is also my way of feeling “intellectually” more capable than other.
I don’t know honestly, what does admiring art really mean? Is it admiring the emotions a piece of art invokes–is it analysing and studying it? It is associating some personal ancient value to it? It it understanding its cultural significance? I would be really glad if you can give me answers to these questions!
Also : Françoise Mouly has been the art editor at The New Yorker since 1993 : WOAHHHH!
- Arcane Mysterious; Esoteric
- Apostate One Who Abandons Log-Held Religious Or Political Convictions
- Extirpate To Destroy; To Exterminate; To Cut Out
- Tortuous Winding; Twisting; Excessievly Complicated
- Recalcitrant Obstinately Resistant To Authority; Difficult To Manage
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