Neutral emulation of binaries

These binaries can represent useful means of thinking through many of the positions and debates that take place within both theoretical and empirical work on mapping the digital”.

Linearity vs Hypertextuality
Narrative vs Database
Permanent vs Ephemeral
Bound vs Unbound
Individual vs Social
Deep vs Shallow
Focused vs Distracted
Close Read vs Distant Read
Fixed vs Processual
Digital (virtual) vs Real (physical)


Thinking of Roland Barthes’s desire for Neutral and therefore of the suspension of most paradigms, I would like to suggest of these paradigms that they would represent a much greater potential if they would be dodged through the emulation of their constitutive binaries. This would both embed and embody their characteristics while we would be able to already think beyond.

Narrative of a Database may be Hypertext-like in the way it is developed, Bound to a certain Linearity with a Close Read, while a Distant Read can witness the Depth of a Fixed (settled, achieved) work (artwork, publication, tumblr, etc.) whose complex hypertext-like interactive structure gifts its fractal Reality (macro-micro current state) an Ephemeral nature. A same entity (piece of work) can be Bound and Unbound in the same time, depending on whether we adopt a Close or a Distant Read, which would thus determines the level within the fractal where we would set our FocusEt caetera

Choosing to consider the ambivalent and ubiquitous nature (and reality) of any entity – as it suspends its intrinsic binary (conflictual) constitution (and renders it a Neutral-like wavering position) – allows one to think its entire complexity prevented from any ideology that the favour for one option rather than for the other would have potentially instigated.

Though, binaries are the cement of computational thinking, and this may complicate the ethico-political breakthrough a Neutral position-taking would represent – coupled with SR/OOO and a quantum-like approach.

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