Wednesday, August 25, 2010

On Corrupt Godless Programmers

There's a kerfuffle around Second Life at the moment and some shady antics of 3rd-party clients that are officially allowed to connect to the game. That I wouldn't care about, except that it motivated one of the fiercer critics to come up with this novel argument: computer programming (especially 3D) is inherently a godless and corrupt activity.

This completely short-circuits my usual "angry" filter. Is this a genuinely new idea in the world? Or is this the same as Dungeons & Dragons game religious criticism back in the 80's?

It's all about criminality.

And yes, I will say that coding as an activity does corrupt. I think it's because geeks as a class tend to be godless or agnostic. Sure, you will find the occasional self-professed believing Christian or Muslim or Jew, but by and large, coders do not recognize a Higher Power. They are not People of the Book, because they only recognize their own book, which is code. There are some that realize this manufactured, man-made thing is merely a creation, and not the Creator, and merely a bad imitation of the Creator's works in Nature. But most don't. Most think the coded artifacts are *better*.

This cult of the belief in code-as-law and coders as god particularly infects the virtual world industry, where people get to code not merely some word-processing application or processor of some function on the web, but get to control human beings very visibly, in the round, in 3-D. They love that.

I don't.

I think it's the beginning of their criminality, by which I mean their violations of the law and civilization norms to take, keep, and abuse power.

No comments:

Post a Comment