Katie and Johnathan as a Deep MapPosted by Laura Danielson on Jun 21, 2012 in Blog, Spatial Humanities | 0 comments
dynamic, I am dialectical, I think you should listen to me. I should listen to myself. I want to be multivocal, I think. I want you to figure out how to listen to what we cannot see or know. I want us to be able to smell and taste and feel what we cannot see but I’m not sure who is in charge here. is anyone? are you? am I? is everyone? how many everyones? where are they?
Remember what I told you about simultaneity. I don’t mean to sound like a meta narrative, I’m just having some terminology trouble. (What’s a potluck anyway?) I am all of our journeys at once. I am a verb and a noun. I am process. I have parts too though. I am already a product, not yet a product. will you release me when I am ready or will you hold on to me too tightly? Will you keep me all to yourself? I will let you think about yourself a bit if you like but I know that probably scares you. Either way, you will determine how you use me you can’t help it. If you are listening to me, which you think you should, I will warn you about things. I might whisper or I might scream. let me go a little bit. trust me.
There was some discussion of whether my body (e.g. software) needs to be sustainable – whether I should be designed to exist in perpetuity, or if I should be allowed to gradually decompose into my component parts. Sure, it seems like a good idea to make sure that my parts are categorized and catalogued so that your future digital paleontologists can reassemble my bones into something approximating what I was. But how about preserving me in the first place? Would you let a journal article decompose over time? Go extinct? How can you put a shelf life on knowledge?
But ultimately, we’ve got to break out of this hermeneutic circle and figure out what you and I are trying to do. Am I presenting your story, or letting people build their own? It’s all the same to me, buddy. I am pretty complicated, so don’t think you or anybody else is going to figure me out too quickly. But who am I for? You? Everybody? Look, I don’t know if I’m actually a map or not, but maybe this will help:
Cartographic Cube: MacEachren & Kraak ‘97, as re-presented in Slocum et. al 2008, Thematic Cartography and Geovisualization (3rd Edition) and edited by a sentient deep map.
So, we need to figure this all out. Because next we have to wrestle with conviction about what is unknowable and certainty in the uncertain (in RELIGION of all things) and how to give form and shape to imagined things. That’s super serious. I bet you’ll use the word “fuzzy” a lot and I think that’s a good idea.