Trotskyite TunesA Revolutionary Essay!
(Authorship confession: I, SkrjabLin, was responsible for this.)
The text A Person Paper on Purity in Language by Douglas Hofstadter has, recently, for reasons i don't know, been mentioned on tunes irc. I thought I could write something more interesting than that, on the same kind of formula. The Tunes Manifesto draft by David Manifold (Tril) contained the seed of inspiration to the netherstanding text, which intends to open up the space of lofty moral/political frameworks to which to liken, on which to base, or in which to justify Tunes ideas, apart from and out-over the in the site documents dominatingly supposed framework of "utilitarian libertarianism". But not in a one-dimensional, nerd-humor, way, as vulgar minds might want to interpret it.
(This is not seriously intended, consequently brought through, message-bearing, or very funny. If you are a serious Tunes researcher, please have mercy.)
Manifesto of the First Intersystemal of the Sectarian Revolutionary Cybernetic Tunes Party for Radical Reflection
The Crisis Of The Staticalistic System
The contradictions of late staticalism steadily grow huger and huger.
On the global computing arena ever bigger applications compete for the collected physical (RAM, processor cycles and harddrives) as well as mental resources of the user class. All applications strive to become their own web browser, file manager, editor, desktop, language, and kernel. To become the standard; the platform: such is the applicational focus of today. Even in open source environments is The winner takes it all the true melody of the dynamics of staticism.
Huge inefficiency results from all applications reimplementing the same functionality, thereby duplicating not only the basic implementation costs, but also the indirect costs of incompatibility remediation and programmer tool learning. Fragmentation, social as well as technical, reigns. For this reason already the young Francois Rideau maintained that "reflection is not just a technical, but, above all, a huge social, benefit." (Tunes FAQ)
Running against declining rates of actual work done on invested resources, a staticalism phenomenon caused by a increase in bloat which blablablabla, systems are driven to erase more and more of the intra- and intersystemic regulations on application behaviour.
Thus in systems without strict environment regulations, like Microsoft Windows, applications regularly pollute and damage the computing environment in order to further their goals, without any care for long-term system sustainability.
So called creative accounting, wysiayg, is nowadays considered normal practice. Spectacular crashes are the norm, a recent case being that of Enron.com the Big Browser, which hardly has been reported about in the Unix-served newsgroups.
Elite-steered standards commitees create huge masses of standards to be adhered to for all systems, in the name of increasing efficiency-raising intersystemal data interchange. Their real agenda is furthening the data market for already established big static applications. Standards are the only way for static applications to not grow obsolete, to keep their inroads on new growing system markets. Most standards such as CORBA, COM, X, are directly hostile to the workings of dynamic system reforms. Small developing systems like Plan 9 are reported to have devoted 90-95% of their systemic resources to honoring externally imposed standards, only to find themselves in no better competitive intersystematic position (source: System Software Research is Irrelevant [.pdf], by Rob Pike). The large imperialist systems, on the other hand, disregard standards whenever they deem so profitable.
When their intrasystemic user base are thoroughly exploited, or hegemony is threatened, imperialist systems are led into open war in order to sustain and extend their reign. Peace treaties on boot-loader non-aggression and partitional sovereignity are ignored.
On the pretext of "System Security" no difference is made between anti-virus and anti-copying protection. Embargoes from intersystematic communication against whole systems on the pretext of them "harbouring hackers".
The historical task of the staticalist fight for world domination was the increment of user labour productivity, in driving the development of more efficient hardware and software means of production. But the forces of this process come increasingly into contradiction with the social organisation of the current operating system, where such increases in productivity cannot be efficiently globally utilized for the improvement of the conditions of the user.
UNIX MUST DIE (Rideau, IRC): The State Of Contemporary Technological Consciousness
As an illustrative example of the general air of confusion, uneducation and technological misunderstandings and naivét of so called staticalism "end of history" contemporaineity, Romantic Unician environmentalism claims that the main problem of contemporary computing is the dominance of multilinguistic transsystemic applications, and that a return to small-scale applications only, perhaps trading some limited information via pipes, would remedie this. Anyone who holds such opinions has not understood the inherent workings of static computing; i.e. the process through which bloated applications arise in any system that structurally thwarts decent communication and cooperation. Thus the Unix pipes movement is in its foundation reactionary.
"Pragmatic" Dynamism Is Staticism In Disguise
"It is obvious that existing systems in any combination or organization are brutally incapable of fulfilling the needs stated above. If it is not obvious, you have either not used computers enough, or are ignorant of the possibilities of how much better it can be (Or, maybe you know of some systems we don't: Let us know)." (Manifold, Tunes Manifesto [draft])
Computing history of the latest decennium shows with all clarity what The Rideaueanist movement of the First Tunes Intersystemal knew already in 1994, then laughed at, and seen as a idealist threat to reformism: that "pragmatic" dynamism is staticism in disguise.
Any horse-trading in order to achieve reforms in the prevailing system serves only to delay the radicalisation of the computarian class. Today, the bare mention of "technologies" the likes of C++, XML serves to sufficiently demonstrate that such measures can only increase, never lessen, suffering, largening, as they are, the size of the profiteering petit-programmereoisie which functions as a social buffer between the useriat and the bloat-staticalist stratum.
We do not associate with any allegedly "progressive" OS projects which do not intend, or have not the capacity, to evolve into absorbing all other systems. The true revolution will contain the whole of the computing world. We endorse no notion of "dynamism in one system" (as is often claimed to be the only viable revolution in practice), which catchphrase is often accompanied by Orwellian slogans such as "Worse is Better" etc. Such projects are inevitably doomed to failure, and, in their strive for subsistence, a gradual degeneration into totalitarianism in order to survive the war against staticist systems, as demonstrated with all clarity by scientific study, according to the objective laws of dialectics, of the computing history of recent decennia.
Thus Squeak could not escape the Smalltalk-80 standard or resist stagnifying "pragmatic" requirements, and stayed a toy.
Thus Forth did not integrate with anything and was taken over by the interests of assembler fundamentalists and "close to the machine" zealots, becoming in reality a force for the most reactionary elements of computer society, propagating the politics not of staticalism, but of pre-staticalist primitivism; yea, of the arch-conservative pipe-dream of complete self-management.
Thus .NET/Mono, free software or not, will be a living inferno on earth.
We oppose strongly the opportunistic cooperation with such imperfect projects, however big their impetus may be in comparison to ours. This does not in any way demarcate the Tunes collective as consisting of indolent individuals sharing predilection for the act of talking, as opposed to doing.
Tunes is not a language. Tunes is the objective expression of the collective revolutionary consciousness of the computational user class.
Myths And Propaganda About Dynamism
With the demise of the Lisp Machine, a massive amount of history revisionism and rationalisation of status quo has been put forward by the apologists of neo-statical theory, which theory deems it best for a system to maintain as small as possible a kernel. The only task given the kernel, it is said, ought to be in keeping competing programs, in their otherwise completely unregulated, or "free," competition, from damaging each other or the users.
We can only conjecture that such a system might at best ensure that every user can freely choose hisher brand of suckiness. In any case, no system will ever be free from tensions lest the user class be given complete democratic control of its computing, rather than just be given a vague, in reality unsubstantial, guarantee to be withheld from "damage."
Further, by smugly identifying the current system with a microkernel system, neostaticalism seeks to confuse. There has never been a functioning microkernel, and will never be: the very concept of a such would, qua concepta, be a self-contradiction. Revealingly enough were microkernels analysed by Rideau as "no functionality, pure bloat." (Glossary entry for microkernels)
It is then claimed that dynamism "sound fine in theory", but in practice must evolve into "the tyranny of the one allowed language" and "the omnipotent surveillance of the one virtual machine or compiler," as well as stagnation due to standard-conformance. This account bears all the marks of a deliberate falsification. The Lisp Machine carried in it the potential of world revolution. In the 1980 decennium, at the height of revolutionary radicalism in the Lisp commune, it was widely understood that for the dynamistic revolution to survive, it must work for its own spread into all systems, and that thus a continuous evolution of Lisp must take place until it could take over the work of all other languages. X himself expressed the spirit of the period, calling Lisp "a programmable programming language" Nah, "The language of all languages".
It was only due to special objective and subjective historical circumstances, and mainly the competition with surrounding staticalist systems, that an increasingly nationalistic stream of thinking gained momentum, propagating for a concentration of programmatic efforts to the local revolution of the artificial intelligence community. The fatal consequences of this turn need not be further elaborated on.
As a coronation of these changes of police, the Common Lisp standard was erected, being, as is extensively documented by all major sources, the result of a coup by reactionary forces, followed by protracted persecution of anti-standardists in the comp.lang.lisp newsgroup.
Simultaneously the movement was betrayed by the separation of the quasi-elitist anti-materialist puritanist-religious conservative Scheme party, also this event in its basic tendencies a result of influences from static systems, mainly Algol. Later followed the "Dynamic Language," or "Dylan," counterrevolution, which openly declared its goal of metamorphosing into a more "statically [sic]" typed language, with a more "conventional" syntax.
And besides, the technological circumstances at the time were not enough developed anyway. There must be staticalist hell before the kingdom of dynamism can come.
That none of the most infamous neostatical theoreticians mention these potentive facts can only signify full-scale corruption, a state of affairs in itself not remarkably surprising considering the thoroughly corrupt computational heritage of neostaticalism.
Finally, it is often heard that the central memory planning of integrated dynamic language systems is inevitably ineffective and bureaucratic. This is easily falsified by the reality of today's huge static applications, which are organised in a central planning manner, and contain in them, as realized already pioneer Dijkstra, an "... implementation of half of Common Lisp".
And again besides, the revolution will not be centralised anyway. It will be no-kernel.
The Reflective System
Our task is the mobilisation of the computists of the world in the struggle for a truly universal system, where
- all resources of production (in form of language semantics, algorithms, functionality) are available reflectively to all objects, applications, computists and languages.
"The goal of the Internet, and of computing in general, should be to get information to where it is needed, when it is needed." (Manifold, Tunes Manifesto [draft])
- all computational labour serves the rationally organised betterment of the computing world, rather than petty bloat interests. All applications work together for their common good, to the point of losing their self-hood as applications. Religion (Jargon file definition of Religion), the sublimation of the negative effects on the user of socially dividing staticist application bloat imperialism, no longer prevails.
- the struggle between the programmereoisie and the user class has ceased, since the user class has won and dictatorship of the useriat has been installed. The post-revolutionary emancipated user class is its own programmer, and thereby fully dictates its own unalienated computing experience, for the first time in computational history.
How To Succeed
Since the technical opportunities for world revolution are not grand in the current historical situation (though there are some of us who think they see it coming), our sole mission as scientific dynamists is the raising of the computational consciousness of computists on all systems, through the writing of wordy political pamphlets and Rideaueanist analyses and revaluations of computing systems history.
In short: All existing systems suck. Have no dealings with them! Don't do anything "constructive" to make the computing world better: just say no to expedience! Stay loyal to the Tunes dream.
In the last days, people will come from all directions and say: "Lo, here is a system that I made. Couldn't this be Tunes? This is good enough to be Tunes."
Do not believe them!
For when Tunes comes, it will be like a flaming sign in the sky.
Tunes is within you.
CyberRealidad, 5 of June 2002 The Tunes Collective
Footnote: the social-materialistic bases of staticalistic hegemony
It might be worth mentioning that a great part of the ability of staticalism to subvert dynamic movements has its basis in the symbiotic relationship between non-dynamism and the prevalence of non-free software. This verhältnis is luminously described in the classic Rideau work "Metaprogramming and free availability of sources."
Sidenotely, an interesting fact to note when talking about Free Software is that according to some (but only some) commentators, the structure of the theory of Free Software furthered by the Free Software Foundation shows some structural similarities to the analyses of other domains by many other radical movements like our own, especially in its core compromise-hostile notion that "Only a completely free system will do".
If we further raise our viewpoint, trying to find the unspoken förutsättnings-horizon of FSF thought, we see that part of the the reason for our society's uppmuntran of proprietary software, and the dominance of copyright as a method for financing software production, may lie in the underlying capitalistic organisation of the economy, where society there is no way of ... . At least such a kind of perspective is adhered to by this analyis: http://www.wsws.org/articles/2000/may2000/micr-m02.shtml, http://www.wsws.org/news/1998/jun1998/mic-j2.shtml, found on the Trotskyite World Socialist Web Site of the International Committee of the Fourth International, which, by the way, is a nice (albeit perhaps a bit one-sided) source of news and discourse about the state of our planet.