Unicorns Fart Pixels

an online notebook cataloguing the always expanding web development landscape & creative side of code.

About Unicorns...

UFP strives to be a perpetual rough draft, a place to catalogue the things that have stumped and/or inspired me as I hash out programing’s creative side, and the always expanding web development landscape. Graphics & audio, generative art, data-visualisation - these are the things that I spend most of my time thinking about in large part thanks to the many artists and thinkers who I’ve been lucky enough to encounter both IRL & URL. Some notes & quotes from some of the afforementioned, that have inspired my curiosity:

“What is the poetics of computation? The origin of the word poetics is Poïesis, which means to create and give form. What is the form of computer? What factors were in place to give this particular form to it? … How can computers create the varying senses of time coexisting in a space? Can we consider code as language rather than technology? After all, computation is not merely a technological subject, but a kind of medium and spirit that runs contemporary society.”
[ Taeyoon Choi | Poetic Computation ]
“When human beings acquired language, we learned not just how to listen but how to speak. When we gained literacy, we learned not just how to read but how to write. And as we move into an increasingly digital reality, we must learn not just how to use programs but how to make them. In the emerging highly programmed landscape ahead, you will either create the software or you will be the software. It’s really that simple: Program, or be programmed.”
[ Douglas Rushkoff | Program or be Programmed: Ten Commands for a Digital Age ]
“The clarity offered by software as metaphor - and the empowerment allegedly offered to us who know software - should make us pause, because software also engenders a sense of profound ignorance. Software is extremely difficult to comprehend. Who really knows what lurks behind our smiling interfaces, behind the objects we click and manipulate? Who completely understands what one’s computer is actually doing at any given moment? Software as a metaphor for metaphor troubles the usual functioning of metaphor, that is, the clarification of an unknown concept through a known one. For, if software illuminates an unknown, it does so through an unknowable (software). This paradox - this drive to grasp what we do not know through what we do not entirely understand… does not undermine, but rather grounds software’s appeal. Its combination of what can be seen and not seen, can be known and no known - it’s separation of interface from algorithm, of software from hardware - makes it a powerful metaphor for everything we believe is invisible yet generates visible effects, from genetics to the invisible hand of the market, from ideology to culture. Every use entails an act of faith.”
[ Wendy Hui Kyong Chun | Programmed Visions: Software and Memory ]