Sunday, July 24, 2005

Save as. A while ago, someone (I forget who) was saying how great it would be if life had an undo command. That would be so sweet. Undo is probably like the most useful computer command. There have been times when I have edited an article down to 450 words and then Jane said, "Actually, it was meant to be 550," and I have gone undo, undo, undo to put back all the words I'd cut out.

This isn't the first time I've made analogies between life and computer files. But anyway, I started thinking about how computer commands are metaphors for human actions, just like computers use metaphors of desktops, files and folders as a user interface. Save as, for example, is about how we constantly re-imagine the world based on knowledge we've acquired or ideologies that shape our subjectivities. Paste special (the Bruce MacAvaney of commands) is about how our brains are selective archives. We can choose whether we remember things in their original contexts (keep source formatting), alter them so there's no cognitive dissonance with our existing worldview (match destination formatting), or analyse them so they're plain ideas (plain text).

Oh, I do love an analogy. I could stretch this out all day, except that I have a rotten hangover. My god, I drank a mink-blowing amount of alcohol last night. Leanne, Bo and I got through two bottles of Vin Rouge while playing board games ("There's another twelve bottles," Bo said reassuringly after we had finished the first one), then I had another glass at Phoenix, where I was meeting Will and his laydeez. The pressure was on to show the Sydneysiders the best of epicurean Melbourne, but David and Camy's was closed, so I took them to Wing Loong, which, happily, is licensed. I had another glass of vino at Wing Loong, then god help me, I switched to beer at Double Happiness. Me and Will were sharing longnecks of Coopers. I think we got through about three, or even four...

Where was I? Oh yeah. Basically, this entire post has been leading up to a cheap gag. When I was in high school, I used to amuse myself by creating Word files that made the computer ask inappropriate things. I believe this was around the time of the Lorena Bobbitt case, too, which explains but does not excuse the following:

ROTFL!!!11!1 LMAO!!!!!1!! BBQ!!!!111!!!11

It doesn't work as well these days. In Word 4, they didn't have the quotation marks around the file name, so the joke was better.

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