So the name of this blog comes from a book by the Czech writer Karel Capek: The Absolute at Large. I'm on a Capek kick right now. Just re-read War of the Newts and I'm currently re-reading The Absolute at Large. Both novels are about mankind trying to exploit technology (is a newt a technology?) with a complete disregard for how technology acts on humans just as much as humans act on technology. Capek was funny, funny, funny. I don't laugh out loud at much stuff I read, but Capek's writing cracks me up a hundred years after it was first written. I'm impressed by the lasting power of his sense of humor, but I'm amazed by his foresight: he invented the term "robot" in his play R.U.R. (which stands for Rossum's Universal Robots); he seems to have foreseen nuclear power with his "Karburator" from The Absolute at Large; War With the Newts shows a very sophisticated understanding of humanity's effect on our planet.
He's written other stuff. I must read it all.
Here is what he looked like:
Here's something smart he wrote in The Absolute at Large:
"There came into the world an unlimited abundance of everything people need. But people need everything except unlimited abundance."
So, there you have it. Demystified. The Absolute.