Wired Magazine’s Chris Anderson is yet another of my token whites I use to convince my friends—my friends with strong African features—and my associates who still suffer from mental colonization that dreams of stardom and captive audiences that “love” you are bullshit coming from the asses of colonial powers with mind-control media creating artificial scarcity. Back in October of 2004, Chris wrote an article called “The Long Tail” and proclaims:

People are going deep into the catalog, down the long, long list of available titles, far past what’s available at Blockbuster Video, Tower Records, and Barnes & Noble. And the more they find, the more they like. As they wander further from the beaten path, they discover their taste is not as mainstream as they thought (or as they had been led to believe by marketing, a lack of alternatives, and a hit-driven culture)…An analysis of the sales data and trends from these services and others like them shows that the emerging digital entertainment economy is going to be radically different from today’s mass market. If the 20th- century entertainment industry was about hits, the 21st will be equally about misses.

I began to understand this phenomenon when I began to look at the hit counts for kintespace.com back in 1998. I discovered that thousands more people were looking at kintespace.com than were those willing to send “fan” mail. That was my first clue that fanaticism is a relic of the “hit-driven culture” that Chris Anderson writes about.

My friends and acquaintances often play a little game. They wish to create products that they themselves fucking hate but they think they will sell because people are stupid and they need to be seduced “for their own good.” What my white token implies here is that the market for which they are preparing no longer exists. At best, it is controlled by such narrow political interests as Wal-Mart, Viacom and Chris Douridas. The seduction for which they are preparing makes them look all whored up in garish makeup. Don’t make me break out the book of Ezekiel on you macho harlots!

The risk my peoples run is that they might waste their lives trying to be something they are not only to find that times have changed and it might pay more to be yourself than to get all house-nigger-ready. Perhaps the emperor has no clothes and his house nigger has no house. Perhaps not… Y’all keepin’ real and all good?

I know this Blog post is definitely a miss but at least I haven’t played myself. I keep me here with me so I can tell me the truth.

The Flaccid Penis Mobile

flaccid penis mobile George Orr and his lady friend dash off to another paragraph in the 1980 Adaptation of Ursula K. Le Guin’s The Lathe of Heaven. This must have been a futuristic vehicle back in 1980—which was really the late 1970s. I don’t know my automotive design history to place this car in context so I’ll just call it a piss-yellow, flaccid penis mobile.

This must be the money shot in accord with the whole tech-hippie liberal media aesthetic. It’s like an 8track tape player on wheels. And the bright yellow reminds me of how revolutionary and novel plastic consumer goods were in the 1970s as most plastic retail objects were bright red or bright yellow.

A bright yellow Hummer would not be the contemporary “conservative” Republican improvement over this spectacle—far from it! We can call those Hummers Neanderthal penis mobiles running on dinosaur Viagra.

a skeptical lawyer with no dreams This is the lawyer love interest in the 1980 Adaptation of Ursula K. Le Guin’s The Lathe of Heaven, the actress Margaret Avery. This is the scene where she helps our hero George Orr, played by Bruce Davison, by essentially guiding his ability to dream. And in this fiction, George Orr has the ability to change the universe when he dreams.

So let’s recap: we have a woman here with strong African features, living in a world that is clearly dominated by recessive-gene patriarchs, occupying all relevant positions of power, exploiting the natural resources of the planet. And now this woman has the ability, by proxy, to change the universe by suggesting a dream to her lover. Well, what is her dream?

Nothing. Her first response is tell him to dream about nothing.

I would have been deeply offended by this plot point in my younger, more innocent years of idealism. I would have found it hard to believe that a woman—especially one sporting her hair natural—would squander such an opportunity as badly as any properly socialized penis bearer. I’m a little more grown up and can now accept that such a person is plausible. Hairstyles do not make the man.

Rocky Lhotka does not come off as a “geek.” Rocky reads like a professional writer with human qualities who happens to discuss technical subjects. I categorize the RSS feed for his Blog under ‘News for Humans’—right along with Miguel de Icaza. You can guess who is listed under my other category, ‘News for Geeks by Geeks’—hey, why not download the OPML file from my company web site and see the whole thang.

His TheServerSide.net article, “The Fallacy of the Data Layer,” reveals the presence of imperfect humanity in solutions we might be tempted to view as purely technical:

In short, I am suggesting that the data layer is an external entity.

Microsoft’s Pat Helland talks about services being autonomous entities that contain business behavior or logic. He also makes a point of noting that a service owns its data source. Were it true that a given service (application) had exclusive control and access to its data source I’d buy into what he says, but that is rarely the case in real organizations.

In the rasx() context, Pat is a geek and Rocky is the human being talking about “real” organizations—only one of these two are capable of biting the head off of a chicken. Rocky is reminding us that we developers, providing enterprise data solutions, need to retreat from the idea that we will have control over the data entering our applications. We always knew this from a user interface perspective (as we wrote those data validation events) but we may not know this from a data interface perspective.

We probably did not care to know because of a variety of technical limitations but we can start caring because of the presence of Web services in our lives:

Service-orientated design leads us to the idea that any software component used by more than one other software component (used by more than one “client”) should be a service. A service is a powerful unit of reuse, providing a contractual interface by which clients can interact with the service…My contention is that the traditional “data layer” is the ideal candidate to be a service.

Take it away Rocky!