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parrot_knight [userpic]

Lost and found

January 22nd, 2006 (03:56 pm)
current music: Queen + Paul Rogers, 'Love of my life'/'Hammer to fall'

Ever feel that the world is passing you by? I've never been particularly attuned to trends in popular culture, but there are a few aspects where I realise that I've been looking away for a few years and find that there is so much that I seem to be expected to know about. There might be more of this when I come to do 'Music - part two'. But for the moment I'm thinking of anime and also technological things generally.

Comments

Posted by: pyotr_stolypin (pyotr_stolypin)
Posted at: January 22nd, 2006 05:30 pm (UTC)

I'm not entirely sure what that would feel like - the nearest I can remember to it comes from when I was living in Bedford in the full knowledge that better, more interesting things were going on elsewhere without me. I'm not sure if I'd mind the world leaving me behind somewhat, so long as that meant it becoming a more humane place.

Posted by: parrot_knight (parrot_knight)
Posted at: January 22nd, 2006 06:05 pm (UTC)

It's difficult to establish exactly what I'm articulating in terms that make sense outside my interior monologue. Perhaps it's simply one of experience - suddenly finding that in parts of my social circle topics of conversation and interest are looming large which I know nothing about and am expected to know about - when I've been too busy with one thing and another to pay much attention.

In general, there is much of the world that leaves me behind. I like to think that I strive to do the least harm to other people - it was a term Paul Eddington used in the interview he gave to the 'Face to Face' series - but it can be so difficult to assess one's success.

Posted by: Pellegrina (pellegrina)
Posted at: January 22nd, 2006 05:43 pm (UTC)

I know exactly what you mean - especially with anime! I grew up with the stuff and for years after I moved here, there was no-one else who knew what I was talking about. Then I looked away and suddenly it's all over the Zeitgeist, shows I'd never heard of, vast articulate fandoms, LJ usericons galore. The same happened with the Internet to some extent - I was surfing the Net in spring 1994, when you could still visit *all* the new sites posted each month - but the whole commercial and fileswapping thing whizzed past me while I wasn't paying attention.

Posted by: parrot_knight (parrot_knight)
Posted at: January 22nd, 2006 06:22 pm (UTC)

On the way back from visiting pennypaperbrain last night, I called into the ex-Tower Records Virgin Megastore at Piccadilly Circus, and looked, out of interest, at the prices of anime DVDs. I thought that TV SF fans were exploited... no wonder downloading seems so prevalent among anime-viewers.

Recently I've felt as if I'm in the 1980s again, when I felt no kinship with the Zeitgeist (which seems like the appropriate word) being enthusiastically embraced or compromised with by my contemporaries. I can tell that the situation is not the same at all, but - and this isn't precise at all - the landscape in front of me is somehow not the one I expected to find when I turned the last corner.

Posted by: Disparate Housewife (wryelle)
Posted at: January 22nd, 2006 07:14 pm (UTC)

I certainly increasingly get this feeling with technology. I havn't been into a Dixons or similar for yonks so it was news to me the other day that you couldn't get non-flat screen tellies any more. I was shocked when I heared you could get portable CD players for a tenner. I had to have it explained to me a few months back what a Blackberry was. It's all mildly depressing. Its as if the technological part of my brain somehow got stuck around 1995.

Posted by: parrot_knight (parrot_knight)
Posted at: January 22nd, 2006 07:29 pm (UTC)

I have a long-neglected web page which is entirely written using coding I picked up from a class in 1995. I have no idea about CSS, and was suspicious of innovations such as Java.

Worse, though, were the conversations when I was an undergraduate. One friend once mused that "Just think. We're probably going to be the only generation that will need to know how to programme a computer" and then paused and laughed "Of course, you don't know how to programme a computer, do you?"

There was another friend who in the middle of a perfectly sensible conversation (back in 1992 or so) said "I need to learn a new language. I'm good at C, but I need C+" or something, and seemed to expect me to give advice, when I had no idea of what she was talking about.

Posted by: pyotr_stolypin (pyotr_stolypin)
Posted at: January 23rd, 2006 08:54 am (UTC)

You can still get CRT televisions - try John Lewis - and, for the most part, their picture is still marginally superior to flatscreens, something that will no longer be true by the time 2006 is out.
I do take it that anime fans are aware that there is a, ah, "dark" side to that, which accounts for much of the domestic downloading (you can't be arrested if a cartoon of a particular nature is found on your PC, but you can if the same scene is a photograph etc.)?
Part of this question is aesthetic, isn't it? It's one thing disregarding computers in 1990 when there are few/no graphic interfaces, quite another when modern equipment is quite elegant and beautiful and gives access to the art and literature and music of the world. And another part of it is economic: one tends to know what a Blackberry is when one can afford the monthly charges those things rack up.
Google the new Sony EReader if you haven't heard of it.

Posted by: Disparate Housewife (wryelle)
Posted at: January 23rd, 2006 10:13 am (UTC)

Very true re. economics - I don't have the disposable income for gadgets.

I'd vaguely heared of those. Neat. And yet...unless you were planning on doing some work on the move than involved reading multiple books from a large personal library - what is the point? I can see the point for storing lots of music on one gizmo, but not so much for books.

Posted by: parrot_knight (parrot_knight)
Posted at: January 23rd, 2006 04:20 pm (UTC)

I've read that someone is close to putting an electronic document reader that looks like a book, with flexible screens arranged like pages, on the market; but aesthetically reading one of those is going to be quite a different experience from reading something printed on paper.

Posted by: pyotr_stolypin (pyotr_stolypin)
Posted at: January 23rd, 2006 08:11 pm (UTC)

I think when you say "on the move", you've hit the nail right on the head. But I think one needs to add in wifi - and the "large personal library" becomes e.g everything on Project Gutenberg.

Posted by: Disparate Housewife (wryelle)
Posted at: January 23rd, 2006 10:18 pm (UTC)

oo yes. I hadn't thought of it like that :)