Guy at empanada stand at the airport in Miami: Aye. i know you from the television.
Me: No you don't. You're just trying to get me to buy something. (joking)
Empanada Guy: Yes I do but that's okay. You don't want to be noticed. We're not asking to take your picture.
Me: I'm not on TV though.
Empanada Guy: Yes you are with the white coat and the funny things on the Internet.
Me: You mean online?
Empanada Guy: On the YouTube on the television. I watch it with my son. He loves it. He thinks you very funny.
Me: Oh wow. So you *do* know me. I'm not famous though.
Empanada Guy: Yes you are but don't worry. I won't take your picture. I'll just tell my son I saw you.
Me: Um. Ok. I can take a picture with you. It's just that I'm not--
Empanada Guy: That's ok. You don't want to be noticed.
Me: No I'm just not used to this. It's the Internet. Not television.
Empanada Guy: Internet. Television. It's all the same.
One more thing from yesterday’s post about story APIs and cultural content as an extension of a database:
I really wanted to make a KYM manga series about Internet Scientists attempting to study ED, 4chan, ICHC, eBaums, etc. who would all appear as benevolent and malevolent monsters doing battle.
Members of the KYM community would appear as characters the scientists would encounter during the course of the story. Their dialogue would (unwittingly) be made up of lines they’d written as forum posts in the past.
The responsive web is one that abstracts what you have to say from how you say it. Take, for example, NPR’s recent move to an API driven content model. By moving to an API for providing content, NPR has been able to manage its collection of apps and sites in a consistent way. The only thing that changes is the presentation layer.
This is what the responsive web should be all about. Figuring out what it is you have to say, and letting how you say it be driven by that. Design is about meeting a need in a way that is visually pleasing, but also that works to meet the needs of the user.
Matthew is talking about design but there’s no reason why this shouldn’t apply to “content” as well.
I used to say that everything that came out of Know Your Meme was a product of what the community put into MemeDB. This was a philosophy that was understood and embodied by everyone who worked on the site and the show. (Content. Code. Community.)
To me, the KYM production bible (show conventions, tropes, edit guide) was the API for outputting MemeDB entries to video. Theoretically, we could hand the show API/bible over to any capable filmmaker who would be able to code and output an episode of their own.
We tried light experiments in this direction through the creation of KYM “Dispatches” but we never got to see the project all the way through:
I think there’s something to the idea of explicitly turning a TV show’s mythology into a database with an explicit set of methods and classes (API) for creators to build off of.
There will be a lot of missteps. And then one day, somebody will get it right and storytelling will feel brand new again.
There are language games, too. One, known as “Ermahgerd”, originated as a written representation of speech produced through an orthodontic retainer (of the sort which your correspondent, alas, used to wear). “Ermahgerd”, of course, means “oh my god”. Know Your Meme, a website which documents the origin and spread of memes on the Internet, reports further. The orthodontic retainer jokes aren’t new, as any teenager with braces might tell you, but its written representation is. As Know Your Meme points out in an informational video, “Ermahgerd” has become a language game akin to Pig Latin or Verlan, with those in the know—Redditors and other online denizens—producing and understanding their own unique brand of funny gobbledygook. The result is nearly incomprehensible, but the joke is apparent when the text is read phonetically. The Economist? Nope. The Erkernermerst? Yerp.
Know Your Meme mentioned in The Economist. Achievement unlocked.