Well, probably the most intriguing thing that happened last week was the unexpected conversations that started up around the graphs of the future presentation I gave (all of 15 minutes) at the University of Michigan last Saturday the 2nd. It wasn’t unexpected in the sense that it was an award-winning 15 minutes of fame at all — just that it was more legible to people it seems than I had expected. The surprise might be that I had sorted out what I wanted to share in a low-level panic. When I first started thinking about the design fiction stuff and shared it at Design Engaged 2008 in Montreal I had this idea that was super formative about showing representations of the future. And because Design Engaged was a place wher eyou could show things that were still busted up and incomplete, I went for it, and basically showed three kinds of futures from three different thinkers/writers/futurists. But — I didn’t really have good representations so I found some stand-in photos that showed them. Like..for the William Gibson the-future-is-here-its-just-not-evenly-distributed I showed sandwich spread — peanut butter, I think — on a piece of bread to give that sense that the future can be spread about. It didn’t really work. This time, I drew in my wobbly drawing way, the graphs I wanted and I guess it worked because in contrast to the very sophisticated renderings of the surrounding presenters (architects, mostly) it was low-res and low-fidelity which provided a nice contrast, I suppose.
I still want to find a good Latourian graph of the future. Something knotted and gnarled with multiple intersections and conclusions. Inadvertently, Sascha may have given me this when he shared this Tim Hawkins piece “Wall Chart of World History from Earliest Times to the Present” (1997) shown at the top of this post. I wonder if anyone knows how I can obtain detail photography of this?
Aside from that, I have been assembling collections of movie clips for the evolving series on Design Fiction Chronicles. I hope beyond possibility that Volume 1 will be available for the upcoming Design Fiction Swiss Design Network conference at the end of this month.