Notes on Futurish

A few notes that I jotted down, and inspired further though while reading Futurish:

1.) At the beginning of the everyday futures section, there is a discussion about robots roles in our futures dreams. The author mentions here we are in the 21st century, and very few of us actually have robots in our homes, possibly because they are so creepy. I couldn’t possibly disagree with this statement more. The author is very likely thinking of humanoid robots such as Rosie from the Jetsons, when in reality he should be thinking of robotics as to what they truly are: any mechanical element which carries out a series of tasks via automation. Examples include Roombas, pool cleaners, and even aspects of appliances such as dishwashers. I would argue this is a failure of design futures thinking, assuming that any sort of robot that completes personal assistant tasks much assume a humanoid form. This line of thinking is similar to one with extraterrestrial life, where the immediate assumption is that if we were to find that “aliens” exist, they would appear similar in form to humans, when in reality they may be so wildly different we can not event perceive their possible forms.


2.) The practice of everyday futures mentions the prompt regarding what would you do if there was an electricity cut. I would personally treat it as a many vacation, assuming everyone else is experiencing the same cut and I knew at one point in the short future it was coming back. This is exactly how we treat it in Florida when a Hurricane hits and power is lost.

3.) There was a note about the official language of design futures being English. I’m not sure how much I agree with this statement. It seems like there is very likely quite a bit of design futures present in less fortunate countries, especially in relation to an enhancement in quality of their particular surroundings, though they many not be taken seriously as there is no capital behind them to be deemed realistic. I would posit design futures outside of the first world are simply labeled as dreams.

4.) Pataphysics. This idea is interesting to me, though I’m not sure how realistic it is outside of a fine arts or discussion based realm. This makes me thing of things like the intentionally bad design displayed below.



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