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MAR

Entertainment v. Thinking

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So my favorite video site got taken down by the feds for copyright infringement and it got me thinking.

 

Radio, TV, and the Internet has killed thought. In an age where knowledge is so easily accessible and everyone has a forum to speak I find less and less people are thinking for themselves. In all honesty, I am as guilty as any other. In high school, before the internet exploded into what it is today, I might have spent hours contemplating a subject, abstract or concrete, but now I just Google it and see what others have said.

 

Sure, entertainment can be an outlet to introduce ideas; documentaries are a good example. Instead of finding a display of facts that you could use to form your own ideas, one generally will see someone else's ideas displayed as fact. That's not learning, that's indoctrination.

 

My grandfather once said something that stuck with me. I had just looked up the meaning to a word online and he said, "Before the internet you had to get a dictionary and look up the word, and by the time you were done you knew the meaning of that one, and five others." My grandparents all came from very poor families and they all have better vocabularies than my parents or I do. Despite knowing more math and science in high school than my parents did in college I still feel inferior.

 

I waste hours watching movies, TV shows, listening to the radio, and hanging out here and making generally thoughtless posts and it bothers me. It's easy to lay blame on the entertainment industry when ultimately the one at fault is myself but its hard to deny that they are a factor. Its easy to get caught up in skillfully designed worlds then be part of the one we're in.

 

I keep thinking about shedding all these things and taking up some sort of primal calling, something about this instant world feels empty. I cant be the only one that feels this way because the rest of the world seems hollow and apathetic. I want to start thinking freely again.

 

[/rant]

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Mar - it wasn't ninja video by any chance was it?

 

Also, I do agree with you, the internet does make everything so accessible, also there is no way to control the validity of the information people obtain on it. I do waste plenty of time online, mainly on 12oz, if I'm honest. But I do also watch a lot of TV too mainly documentaries and stupid TV shows.

 

I think if a subject interests you enough then you go out of your way to read more in it, contemplate it more, so I do prefer the ease of access online because then I'm not investing so much into a subject I may not like. If I find something that really interests me I will probably try and read books on it rather than read up online.

 

EDIT - if anyone has some good sites for watching TV online that regularly gets updated pm me the details. it appears they closed down about 6 or 7 different sites today

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Haha, yeah, it was Ninja Video. RIP.

 

On the subject of validity, a teacher told me that encyclopedias have as many mistakes as Wikipedia. That lead me to start questioning what I read in books even if more fact checking goes into them.

 

I think what I miss is when I was younger I would solve a problem by working through it myself without outside influences even if I was recreating something someone else had done. It's actually a great creative exercise. The internet took that from me by making things so accessible.

 

I heard on TV news that the #1 source of sex education for modern youth is internet pornography. There are going to be a lot of confused/disappointed kids.

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yea man I can't believe it that really sucks about ninja, I basically used it to watch all my TV, dunno what I'm gonna do, all other sites like Alluc just seem such shitty layouts and crappy flash embeds and not divx.

 

I think the whole internet thing has pluses and negatives, you can get really up to date information and everything is so accessible, but it does make people lazy as well.

 

It is up to the user to decide whether they will invest the time and feel good about it or take the easy google option.

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I keep thinking about shedding all these things and taking up some sort of primal calling, something about this instant world feels empty. I cant be the only one that feels this way because the rest of the world seems hollow and apathetic. I want to start thinking freely again.

 

[/rant]

 

well man thats a good call. in my mind it's just about as easy as making the initial realization. if you can do things daily to keep yourself connected to tangible reality, and not reality transmitted to you by one electronic device or another.. thats completely attainable. its just not instant gratification.

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I heard on TV news that the #1 source of sex education for modern youth is internet pornography. There are going to be a lot of confused/disappointed kids.

 

this FTW

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Don't sell yourself short. You come across as having a lot more on the ball than you seem to give yourself credit for.

 

I used to dwell on this kind of stuff but there's really not much to it. If you want to feel like being online is worthwhile/educational/enriching and not a soul-sucking waste of time and energy, pick good source material that stimulates and challenges you.

 

That doesn't necessarily rule out some mindless entertainment and pointless web surfing once in a while, it's all about finding a balance. Most of the books I read (yes, I still read books) tend to be about topics I'm interested in, but every now and then I'll read a pot-boiler for fun or just to pass the time.

 

A good example is how the "user content as comedy" concept has thus far turned out to be a contradiction in terms. Web 2.0 should promote creativity and collaboration by democratizing the process of finding a like-minded audience. Yet sites like Fark and SA are pretty boring if you aren't in on the joke...that plus the ADHD/meme/lulz mindset stifles originality. Why tell a new joke that might flop? If you're after a laugh, stick with what works.

 

I've made my peace with it by spending a lot less time online and making the time I am online worthwhile. It's been easy since my laptop broke, and while the Touch is effective it leaves a lot to be desired...smaller thumbs, multitasking, a usable wifi connection, etc.

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It's all true. Strike a balance. I do my share of internetting. But I learned a lot about a diverse variety of things from painting freights for many years, especially since I am more willing to endure long waits and long walks to get over. One example: I was standing in the woods waiting for the switcher to leave so I could paint. I was attacked by an average battalion of mosquitoes. I wanted to paint and was willing to wait out the situation, but the mosquitoes sucked so bad I decided to kill them. ALL of them. I began to wonder how many were in the radius of being able to smell me and home in. There was no wind so I figured if I killed the first and second waves I might actually "win", that is, kill every mosquito in range. I put down my bag, stood still, and began clapping at the attackers. I killed a few, missed a few. Concentrating on the task, I tried to get better at taking a second shot at ones I initially missed, but they tended to disappear. I paid even closer attention and discovered a startling fact: clapped-at mosquitoes fly to a nearby leaf and land upside-down on the bottom of the leaf to gather themselves for another attack. They are hard to spot while they do this - who's looking at the undersides of leaves? I hunted more aggressively using this knowledge and killed the first wave and the stragglers who wandered in later, and there was actually a lull because I had succeeded in killing all the attackers in range. Naturally a few latecomers would stumble into my smell radius, or if I moved anywhere I'd encounter the ones chilling in that area, but it worked for a few minutes. The switcher left and I went back to painting.

I never heard anyone else drop that little bit of knowledge before or since. There's probably some insect specialists who could have told you that, and from their own experience, but it was cool to find something out live.

There's no need to hermit up and live a primal life. But it's very much worth it to introduce chunks of that stuff. Long walks in new places are the best for keeping your observational brain sharp.

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So my favorite video site got taken down by the feds for copyright infringement and it got me thinking.

 

Internet is a so powerful brainwashing tool that the governments/illuminati or name it what you want will never completely block it. My "theory" is that all the music/movies/entertainment industry had a "plan" to de materialize all their contents and force the people to find normal to use and soon only buy "virtual" contents. The best way was to start with a freedom time during when everybody found that it was so great to download watch everything for free and as the time went by they get used to stop having the real contents. So it seems that now they find that after 10 years ( it was only arround 1998-2000 that the connection speeds became sufficient for decent downloading) it's time to slowly ring the end of the party. When i see 75 olds people using an iphone i think that they already won. Free internet contents will not be free forever.

 

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It's all true. Strike a balance.

 

There's no need to hermit up and live a primal life. But it's very much worth it to introduce chunks of that stuff. Long walks in new places are the best for keeping your observational brain sharp.

 

I have to find a balance because my profession is tided to computers, and no doubt that contributes to my frustration. Youre right though, I need to take more walks, I used to spend hours in the woods walking, thinking and exploring.

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Its easy to get caught up in skillfully designed worlds then be part of the one we're in.

 

 

this pretty much sums it all up

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It's all true. Strike a balance. I do my share of internetting. But I learned a lot about a diverse variety of things from painting freights for many years, especially since I am more willing to endure long waits and long walks to get over. One example: I was standing in the woods waiting for the switcher to leave so I could paint. I was attacked by an average battalion of mosquitoes. I wanted to paint and was willing to wait out the situation, but the mosquitoes sucked so bad I decided to kill them. ALL of them. I began to wonder how many were in the radius of being able to smell me and home in. There was no wind so I figured if I killed the first and second waves I might actually "win", that is, kill every mosquito in range. I put down my bag, stood still, and began clapping at the attackers. I killed a few, missed a few. Concentrating on the task, I tried to get better at taking a second shot at ones I initially missed, but they tended to disappear. I paid even closer attention and discovered a startling fact: clapped-at mosquitoes fly to a nearby leaf and land upside-down on the bottom of the leaf to gather themselves for another attack. They are hard to spot while they do this - who's looking at the undersides of leaves? I hunted more aggressively using this knowledge and killed the first wave and the stragglers who wandered in later, and there was actually a lull because I had succeeded in killing all the attackers in range. Naturally a few latecomers would stumble into my smell radius, or if I moved anywhere I'd encounter the ones chilling in that area, but it worked for a few minutes. The switcher left and I went back to painting.

I never heard anyone else drop that little bit of knowledge before or since. There's probably some insect specialists who could have told you that, and from their own experience, but it was cool to find something out live.

There's no need to hermit up and live a primal life. But it's very much worth it to introduce chunks of that stuff. Long walks in new places are the best for keeping your observational brain sharp.

 

You could think this one out, but, I'll entertain myself with this:

 

OFF.jpg

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I definitely agree with the sentiment of this thread. Sometimes I feel like people, including myself, tend to get stuck in the hollow entertainment world. Every so often I think to myself "I'm wasting time that I'll never get back, doing what??" As of right now I'm in college, but as soon as I graduate a few friends and I plan to just hit the road and nomad it for a while, just to see the world through our own eyes as opposed to somebody else's on flickr or something. There's so much world out there that people take for granted while they sit behind computer screens, and I'm tired of being guilty of that myself.

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for a while i've always thought the internet/tv/video games slowly destroy your imagination. take 2 weeks without any of them to see what i mean

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For the last 3 years my life has consisted of computer, bars, relationship, restaurants, books and in that order too.

 

I can honestly say that there is nothing else in my life bar small anomalies. Like this year I went to a music festival, but I took a book. Last year I took a business trip, where I worked on computers, went to bars and restaurants. I try and fit exercise in but my body is slowly deteriorating with time and abuse.

 

I can honestly say that I have never learned as much as in life as I have in the last 3+ years. When I go home for a break, which is extremely rare I have to work hard at reverting to my old self otherwise my friends and parents would have a hard time recognising me.

 

When my body is holding together I ride my bike deep in to the foreigness of my surroundings, I might as well be going to another planet. When I do this I am also listening to work stuff on the MP3 and looking at things through work eyes. My work is a lens through which I now view everything, including all relationships. But my work is about the world, my surroundings and relationships. I understand everything so much better and this tends to detach me from many things. I can honestly say that reading CH0 grounds me from this and that is an eerily interesting concept.

 

I've only red two fiction books since 1996 and they were Lord of the Flies and The Spy That Came In From The Cold and that was only because I was told to. Both great books. I do not miss fiction. I watch movies from time to time but that is usually only due to the residual affects of alcohol abuse. I tend to watch movies like End Play, Charlie Wilson's War and Casablanca. If it was a particularly heavy night it may devolve to Big Lebowski, Hellboy2 or The Watchmen. I don't miss Television or Arnie.

 

Once a year I'll start drawing and that will climax in a piece on a wall somewhere, usually so drastically bad I don't even take pictures. That is one of the anomalies I look forward to but cannot force. In 15 minutes I'm going to shower, dress in non-branded clothing and go to a bar. I will order a number of Moscow mules to start off with and then meet a banker from Spain, a lawyer from England and journalist from Taiwan/Korea. None of us will go home sober and although we are all friends each of us will be more interested in what the other person has to say than saying anything ourselves. It's raining tonight and will be raining tomorrow.

 

 

I am very happy with my life but I am going to change it. I don't fear loneliness, sometimes I wish for it. I just know that I won't like it if it happens.

 

 

 

I fucking hate mosquitos.

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There is a VAST world of knowledge, I mean REAL Mastercraftsmen knowledge that is barely attainable on the internet because half of it involves books that have been out of print for a hundred years and the other half is based on 'hands-on' knowledge.

 

I recently made what has been dubbed the "magic tool" out of a short length of steel and a sparkplug (plus a little welding). It removes multi-speed bicycle freewheels. Well, all generics but Shimano has a but too much play. I failed on the first run and spent the piece of steel I would use to build the Shimano specific tool but... that's gonna involve 'unwelding' a bolt I tried to use for my first draft of the tool, the failure, and now a pain in the ass... but, what I'm getting at is the internet had nothing to do with this. This was just between me and 6 hubs that needed to be relieved of their freewheel clusters. Mass success but still 2 failures on the Shimano previously mentioned, soon come man.

 

The internet is gonna recommend the Park tool (not a bad option, solid quality) but I didn't come out of pocket with any money and I didn't wait for shipping. Now that tool sees nearly daily use at the local bike co-op. The only MUST buy tools I see out there for bike work are a crank puller (though there are methods) and perhaps BMX freewheel removers (assuming you want to save the freewheel and/or hub)...

 

I'd have never even realized the initial kernel of that thought if it hadn't been for my extensive and prolific reading of fiction. From Douglas Adams to Roger Zelazny (plus big shouts to Ray Bardbury and Kurt Vonnegut)... but not just science fiction, murder mysteries, general fiction and non-fiction alike.

 

Nothing about the internet approaches the intimacy and contemplative nature that can be achieved with a book in hand. If the internet is your 'font of knowledge' you're shortchanging yourself. Hit up the local library and spend some time on your own design... it seems strange to me to say this stuff on a graffiti/art site.

 

Is that the future? We're all going to forget nuance and skill in favor of some dickturd nobody has heard of that happened to be the first to post a video on YouTube or any of a grip of other DIY sites? The next generation is going to abdicate creative thinking for a google search? I mean, could be... I hope not but...

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Books are static, the internet is not.

 

 

The internet is what you make of it. To see it as a substitute of initiative is to misuse it.

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For me the internet represents an easy solution. I have a problem, I've tinkered with it for a minute and I cant figure it out — google. Where as, 10 years ago I'd have to figure it out myself and in the process I would increase the depth of my knowledge. Not to mention, it let me think around problems increasing my creativity. Since I'm an experiential learner I am more likely to remember how to do something if I suffer through an hour of tinkering, rather than hoping on the old interweb and getting the solution. Books fail me in the same way, that's why I rarely bought textbooks in college or read them in high school. (I do read though, on average I finish two books a week; usually fiction and philosophy.)

 

So yeah, the point of my rant is knowledge isn't power, experience is.

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