Once Works Well was pure technology. Now it seeks merely to divert.
Pansy subjects - Verse! Opera! Domestic trivia! - are now commonplace.
The 300-word limit for posts is retained. The ego is enlarged

Sunday, 3 August 2008

Time-wasting - but in a good cause

The technology of language is, I suppose, language itself. The method by which you drive a paragraph through the same hoops as a manufactured product: Concept, Design, Model, Test, Assess, Correct, Re-model, etc.

It’s more apparent if, like me, you’ve foolishly embarked on a poem. Concept: That’s the subject, I’ve got one of those. Design: Sixteen lines, four verses, iambic whatnot. Model: The first draft. Test: Read it through. Correct: Self-explanatory. Re-model: Second draft. But it’s at this point that a repetitive loop begins; a game of spillikins. Take one from the pile and the pile goes pear-shaped.

Maths would be better but I never learned the language, only bought the phrase-book. Here’s a good phrase:

Δi/Δt (A small change in current divided by a small change in time).

Concise, elegant (Greek letters will do that for you). No spillikins on the horizon. Now all I’ve got to do is match it to my subject. Hmmm. At least I’ve been able to spend ten minutes away from the burden of my poem.

The big sigma? It confers gravitas.

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