Bobbing thoughts and questions

Despite my last post providing extensive musings about objects, a few additional aspects have occurred to me and I’m feeling the need to explore them before I start work on my first test objects. These ideas are unresearched and not particularly erudite or novel, and I only set them down here to stop them bobbing about on my lake of thoughts.

Objects can be anything, large or small. In fact, so far as I know, all objects are actually made up of large numbers of very, very small atomic, and even sub-atomic, objects; and these basic objects can combine to be objects of any number of different sizes including very large objects such as stars.

Of course, this description of objects is a purely human notion – an idea which enables us to make sense of our surroundings. Somehow, we are able to recognise individual objects when we see them – we perceive them as distinct entities with specific forms (though, we need to be aware that we may only be perceiving a subset of an object’s characteristics, for example, we don’t sense the heat radiated from objects). Fascinatingly, humans and all lifeforms are themselves objects in their own right.

However, perhaps the most interesting thing that humans inject into the world of objects, is that we actually MAKE objects. Objects such as toasters are unlikely to emerge from the simple interaction of matter with the laws of nature. Humans choreograph the laws of nature to combine objects of various sizes and types into novel objects which they can recognise and use. It’s not just humans that have this ability; the animals on earth have similar capabilities, for example, birds build nests, and ants build ant hills; and the corollary is also true – both animals and humans can shorten the natural lifespan of particular objects or obliterate them completely.

Obliteration means the total destruction of something – or at least total destruction as perceived by humans . Most of us find it quite easy to envisage such an event: it brings to mind images of something being smashed to smithereens, or of being reduced to crumbling ashes in a fire, i.e., what was an identifiable object with recognisable characteristics, has had its form removed to become just a collection of smaller objects. However, these concepts are not so clear cut in the digital age, in which a digital version of an object can be retained indefinitely even after the physical object has been destroyed. In absolute terms there is no question that obliteration has occurred; however, from the human viewpoint, the digital version can convey some part of the fully formed essence and integrity of an object. Which begs the questions, which parts; and what’s missing; and can obliteration be said to have truly been achieved if both the physical and digital versions have been destroyed but not the memory of the object in a human’s brain?

With all that said, its time to get stuck into my first group of test objects….

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