casual observer comments

Ralph Mellor
Tue, 19 Sep 2000 16:44:47 -0600

some attempts to understand tunes, plus harsh criticism.
(friendly, huh? ;>) pure flames should be aimed at my
email address rather than the list -- in which case plz
note that my email address is munged.


1. aiui, tunes represents an attempt to develop the theory
and/or code of a computing system that is:
A) hosted on von neumann systems
B) cybernetic
C) deep

how wrong are each of these 3 understandings, and
what other requirements am i missing that are very
definitely not derivable from the above? (note that i
consider, for example, both reflection and use of OO
to be derivable from B.)

2. i read the old arrow document (i can't remember why, but
i couldn't read the new one). hmm. constructing digital info
in a von neumann context as cybernetically manipulable
material. quite an eye opener. (ok, i admit it, i let out an
involuntary 'eureka' as i read it.) who wrote it and when?


<critique start>
<flame-retardant-suit on>

3A. imo, the full project name (as against just tunes) is a
significant liability in terms of 'marketing' message,
and this will affect anyone and everyone that comes
across tunes, regardless of whether their interest is
non-technical or technical.

first, it does not begin to convey anything to do with what
the project is claiming to attempt. that is a very bad start.

far worse, it is pure marketese. tunes is clearly not the
only system in the world that can at least lay claim to be
trying to be "useful, nevertheless expedient".

third, 'expedient' is problematic. to quote a dictionary:

'expedient' can mean:
  "marked by a concern for self-interest rather than principle"
  "Something contrived or used to meet an urgent need. See
  Synonyms at makeshift."

fourth, altho the recursive acronym structure is clearly
apropos to someone who knows what tunes is about,
it appears to be a pointless cliche to someone on first
encounter. while that is forgiveable when one realizes
why it is apropos, the negative effect inevitably lingers.
all in all, i somewhat support the use of a recursive
acronym for a project in which reflection is so key,
but i emphasize it has problems and there are other
ways of reflecting the centrality of reflection.

fifth, it has no other redeeming artistic or intellectual
merit. (or am i missing something special about the

3B.  imo, the short name is not a good name from a marketing
standpoint for any digital product that needs ground-up net
promotion. the name is not reliably minable (searches for
references to 'tunes' do not generate particularly useful raw

4. aiui, the project has made significantly slower progress
on achievements than the founders originally expected, but
there has been no publicly discussed effort to try to *reliably*
re-align its ambitions with possible practical considerations.
otoh, i have not carefully searched the archives so i may
well be way out of line with this statement. (hey, my suit is

Ralph Mellor:   615.292.2917 x2
If I had my life over, I'd study reincarnation.        icq# (later)
Digital Impact:    615.292.2917 or 877.DIMP.COM
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