John Tobler on Thu, 7 Aug 1997 19:44:02 +0200 (MET DST)

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Re: <nettime> net.<foo>

Alan J Sondheim wrote:
> This is not an idle comment; it is antithetical, in fact, 
> to the comb/tree structure implied by the Net address 
> dot hierarchy. The latter is status, the former, as in 
> what _might_ be conveyed by dot.fear, is pro-cess. Now 
> both, interestingly enough, are performative - the Net 
> path shuttles/filters/routes addresses, while the other, 
> literary, forms, construct phraseology, the breath of 
> the reader.

The dearly dreaded dot de-abstracts.  In object-oriented programming
(OOP), for example, the verbalism on the left side of a dot represents
an "object" and that which stands on the right side describes an
"attribute" or "method."  In net.lingo, the right side subordinately
qualifies a general concept on the left side.  Left and right serve as
"positional qualifiers."  In either context, the right side
*particularizes* something about the generalism on the left side.

In these contexts, the poor dot cannot shed its role as a servant/symbol
of hierarchy.  You evaluate this result as either fortunate or
unfortunate, depending on what you're trying to accomplish.

What about the ordering of your abstraction?  Are you feeling dot.fear

Then, again, should you say, "I am a net.citizen," or, "I am a  Neither.  The use of any form of the verb, "to be," in
such verbalisms drags you into the well-known and dangerous semantic
error of "identification."  E-Prime, a variant of English invented by D.
David Bourland, offers good discipline and can raise your resistance to
this dis-ease.

Korzybskian general semantics, of course, warns us to retain
consciousness of *all* of our abstractions, to maintain awareness of
their "order," and to identify hazardous "multi-ordinal" terms.  General
semantics also provides some "extensional" methods to help us avoid such
semantic errors in order to maintain some sense of sanity.

We certainly need global.sanity!  Or is that


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