[-empyre-] One more try

Sorry that my thinking seems blinkered and stupefying. I'll try once more
before the onslaught of the semester begins to restate this to everyone
and their single or double arrows:

The field that I'm part of, new media, is a discipline being developed by
artists, theorists, scientists, and engineers, among others. If you'd
prefer that the new discipline not exist, or would like to call it a
filter or category and not allow it to be considered as a discipline, a
way of thinking, then you're putting yourself on the sidelines of this new
field -- I'm not doing that to you -- and you are no doubt situating
yourself somewhere within another field. I wish you luck in it.

I hardly think the above perspective is limiting or oppressive. Rather,
what I see as limiting are the unwarranted claims that nothing good can
come from this new field and that a perspective focused on our culture's
new computational abilities is silly and bound to be fruitless. As I've
said, I am sure that new media will not be the only discipline or field
that deals with art on the computer. I would hope that those who come from
other perspectives could be as open and accepting of a new discipline, one
that seeks to critically understand such work and to inform the practice
of those who make it.

I'm afraid no one has said anything to persuade me that the computer is
incidental to new media or that a perspective focusing on it is
counterproductive. We already have a successful, productive discipline
based on the computer and computation: it's called computer science. I
think the uses of the computer for literary, artistic, ludic, and other
sorts of expression are also worth considering in a focused way, one that
draws on computer science and on work done in the arts and humanities. The
work of Espen Aarseth, Lev Manovich, Janet Murray, and others has already
demonstrated to me, at least, that a strong new discipline can be
developed here.

-Nick Montfort
 http://nickm.com  nickm@nickm.com
 My new book, Twisty Little Passages: http://nickm.com/twisty

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