Robots and Tattoos
Sooooo I was talking to the guy who cuts my hair about AI. He’s just seen Midjourney, and a video of a robot doing his job. He said would I get my hair cut by a robot? Thinking of the Tesla files, my immediate reaction is: HELL, NO. How many hundred thousand haircuts do you have to run through to get the first weird, inexplicable, painful misunderstanding of the topography of my head? Or should that be, more alarmingly, topology?
Although interestingly if circumstances required it I would 100% have an operation using robot-assisted surgery. Is it just the consumer applications I don’t trust, or is it that I want human supervision? Or is the balance of risk the decider? Not sure.
We didn’t talk about robot tattooists; the ink art comes up in the context of hair. It’s always been my contention that if I ever started to lose my hair I’d just comb my eyebrows back over my entire head. At the moment I’ve got some almost unnoticeable and probably stress-related alopecia areata (that’s a blatant bit of correlation/causation conflation on my part) - largely observable as a missing patch of stubble on the right side of my jaw which I inevitably play with - and it suddenly occurred to me that I could actually have a tattoo on my scalp instead if the whole thing suddenly exploded. I was thinking of phrases from my own books written over one another to make an almost-legible statement of my creative self that would shape my face and head in a way that did the job of hair. I mean, who knows what my skull looks like under all that floof? Not everyone is a natural Picard. But then I thought is that just super-me me me me and should I instead just get books I like? But which books? And what I fell out of love with one of the quotes, or all of them? If they’re mine, I have to own them anyway, but if I picked them that would suck…
And what colour would I get? Or colours? My natural hair is kinda sandy or dark honey - don’t say ‘brown’. I was shock blonde as a kid, but those days are gone. So my wardrobe assumes that kind of look, but… I’m not sure that would work for this. So black? Gold? Orange and ochre?
If I’m doing this anyway, should I try to get something I can use later as a digital interface?
(This is the kind of slightly weird space I get into when I’m sitting veeeery still with someone doing the bit near the major blood vessels with those razor scissors).
While I have these thoughts - and, admittedly, other ones more work-relevant - other people are doing real things with their time. Like writing about non-linearity in climate effects…
What else am I reading? Here’s a random-ish selection from the self-organising criticality I refer to as a TBR.
Claudio Magris - Danube - gorgeous edition, by the way.
And since we’re doing mini recommendations: if you have not watched Nimona yet, you’re missing out.
I was also almost absurdly jazzed for Ahsoka BEFORE I saw the trailer. Now I’m basically in a state of permanent wow.
Sensible and coherent: just what you expect from me.