1314: "Photos"

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Von_Cheam
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Re: 1314: "Photos"

Postby Von_Cheam » Wed Jan 08, 2014 12:56 pm UTC

Wooloomooloo wrote:

BAReFOOt wrote:Anyone with a healthy level of confidence can handle criticism on a rational level, and either accept and learn from it, or have a rational argument for why it is wrong. Saying the other person is “just condescending” or “offending” is just being a mental baby, going “waaaaaaahhhh”. Nothing but childish pouting and stomping feet, because the jimmies of their unstable confidence have been rustled, and they have nothing to offer in return.


Right, because whatever makes sense to YOU must make sense to everyone, or else. *Sigh* yeah, I know people like that. They're a joy to be around. Do please try to keep in mind things outside scientific rigour do exist, and there are people other than you who strangely seem to adhere to a set of somewhat different values (totally incorrect ones, obviously).


I think that's a rather unfair criticism of BAReFOOt's perfectly reasonable view that if two intelligent people disagree they ought to be able to discuss the difference of opinion in a rational manner without resorting to essentially meaningless name-calling and, if one does resort to such name-calling, that it devalues one's position.

As for "making sense" being a subjective property, I'm less sure still. I think it probably depends on whether the difference of opinion comes down to a different weighting of values between people (which I think maybe is what you are getting at?) or to objectively poor reasoning.

Klear wrote:And to answer cueball's question: Why the fuck do I care how someone else enjoys a sunset? Because they're my friends and family if I'm saying this to them, not complete strangers, and I care about them.


I think that this is a really good argument, but it doesn't go far enough. Should we only care whether friends and family maximise their enjoyment, or should that extend to strangers too? If we perceive something as beautiful or worthy of enjoyment, and we're upset by a stranger acting in a way that seems to diminish their enjoyment, then even if it may be arrogant, closed-minded or even smug for us to believe that - perhaps in the case of sunset-photography it may be - we are at least caring about the stranger, for which Randall is vilifying us.

Andromeda321 wrote:Yup. I kinda love how this thread is also filled with people who are posting here who clearly overlooked the comic's message of "don't judge people over things that make them happy and do not affect you." Which is clearly something good for Randall to remind everyone of considering how few posting here are thinking of it.


I agree that we oughtn't judge people over things that make them happy and don't affect others - but are people being so judged, though, in this instance? To think somebody could be happier if they slightly changed their behaviour and to be upset that they're unwilling (or unable) to isn't really a judgement of the person in that sense, is it? It may be arrogant or narrowminded or whatever, depending upon the situation, but I don't think its personal. In any case, it seems to at least have the other person's interests at heart.




My own view, for the record, is that we're not really intelligent enough to take in all the beauty and sophistication of a sunset, even if we were able to take in enough raw data to do so - which we're not*. If you're a talented (or even a talentless-but-passionate) photographer, you can more than compensate for the sub-optimal sunset appreciation with appreciation of the finer points of the art of photography (and of the resultant photograph, the memory it references, etc.)

However, most people aren't and could probably maximise their enjoyment by changing their priorities to focus on the sunset itself. Randall has plenty of comics in which people implore strangers to maximise their enjoyment by changing their priorities (308 and 209, for instance) and the desire for a stranger to change their priorities is seen as altruistic and liberating rather than arrogant and smug - if sunset-photography is somehow different, I don't at all understand why!

That's my tuppence, anyway.



*We only see sunsets in 2D, from one viewpoint, over a very narrow part of the EM spectrum, etc. etc..

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Re: 1314: "Photos"

Postby paulmiranda » Wed Jan 08, 2014 1:09 pm UTC

J L wrote:I wouldn't want to convince anyone of the "proper" way to experience anything, but working as part-time tour guide, I know the difference between people creating memories of a place they enjoy, and people just recording something they don't give a damn about.

Modern technology makes it possible for people to archive more than they can ever take in. Which, overall, is probably a good thing. The real waste is when people spend their time collecting documents of reality and nobody ever uses these artifacts, not even themselves.


Indeed. It's the masses of people that stand in your way blocking your view to take a crappy picture exactly like a million other crappy pictures to prove they've been somewhere and don't even bother to look at something that is annoying. The extreme is Maddox's "Padhole", using the bad camera on a early-generation iPad that blocks your view of something at the same time they're taking a picture that is not nearly as good as the ones in the museum gift shop.

Their equally-annoying cousin (maybe the same person in a different situation) calls a friend while at a concert to prove they were there.

These are the people not living the moment, but just checking off things from a to-do list that are annoying to people that actually want to be in the moment. Unlike WHG, I ignore them unless their obnoxious behavior literally gets in the way of enjoying what we're all there to see and/or hear, because sometimes you take a crappy picture or poorly record a song for people that can't be there with you, and sharing it in that feeble way is the best you can do.

I still want to choke people using a flash when photographing something too far away for it to be useful... but then their flash _is_ obnoxious and pointless and only reflects stupidity.

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Re: 1314: "Photos"

Postby 6453893 » Wed Jan 08, 2014 1:27 pm UTC

This is the first good GOOMHR for me in...probably a year, but it's something I have to deal with almost every day. Many of my friends are the kind of people who border on ludditism because they feel devices "distance" them from life. Many of them have only crappy nokia candybars that they leave at home all the time anyway. Yeah, you enjoy the sounds of the bus, I'll play music and read Wikipedia thanks.

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Re: 1314: "Photos"

Postby Minstrel » Wed Jan 08, 2014 2:10 pm UTC

quenlinlom wrote:It's a lazy execution of setting up an easy/dumb opponent, and intentionally phrasing your own argument as eloquently as possible. It's polemic, and not thought-provoking.


I felt exactly the same way - there's a real discussion to be had here, but this just felt like a cheap set-up. I think if Randall wanted to make the point "live and let live", he could have done it a better way.

As others have pointed out, it's not so much that I care if other people want to spend 2 seconds saying "ohhhh look!" and then the next 15 fumbling for their phone to take a picture, it's the times those people are the ones with whom I'm spending an evening that annoy me. We don't get to spend time together enjoying something, and then the following 15 minutes are spent checking their pinstabookspace for comments on the thing they just posted and not engaging in conversation over dinner.

It's not everyone that does this sort of thing, and people who do, do it to varying degrees. The comic over-simplified IMO.

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Re: 1314: "Photos"

Postby Klear » Wed Jan 08, 2014 2:23 pm UTC

Von_Cheam wrote:
Klear wrote:And to answer cueball's question: Why the fuck do I care how someone else enjoys a sunset? Because they're my friends and family if I'm saying this to them, not complete strangers, and I care about them.


I think that this is a really good argument, but it doesn't go far enough. Should we only care whether friends and family maximise their enjoyment, or should that extend to strangers too? If we perceive something as beautiful or worthy of enjoyment, and we're upset by a stranger acting in a way that seems to diminish their enjoyment, then even if it may be arrogant, closed-minded or even smug for us to believe that - perhaps in the case of sunset-photography it may be - we are at least caring about the stranger, for which Randall is vilifying us.


I meant that if I were to point out to a stranger that they shouldn't take so many picture and just enjoy the things and they told me to fuck off, they'd be completely in the right.

This discussion reminded me of this cyanide and happiness comic, which isn't really as relevant as I remembered it, but I just went through almost 200 strips to find it so whatever:

Image

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Re: 1314: "Photos"

Postby Jackpot777 » Wed Jan 08, 2014 2:34 pm UTC

Kit. wrote:I hate it when people try to take pictures of a distant view with their flashes turned on.

They obviously should use more power.


Image

...unless they came to the concert to fulfil their picture-of-back-of-head fetish. In that case, they're getting exactly what they came for and I'm fine with that.

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Re: 1314: "Photos"

Postby Kit. » Wed Jan 08, 2014 2:41 pm UTC

Minstrel wrote:
quenlinlom wrote:It's a lazy execution of setting up an easy/dumb opponent, and intentionally phrasing your own argument as eloquently as possible. It's polemic, and not thought-provoking.

I felt exactly the same way - there's a real discussion to be had here, but this just felt like a cheap set-up.

It is a cheap set-up; not so many people can immediately provide a non-silly answer to such a silly question as: "Why the fuck do you care?"

Minstrel wrote:I think if Randall wanted to make the point "live and let live", he could have done it a better way.

I think the whole point of the comic was to take a picture of a confused WHG.

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Re: 1314: "Photos"

Postby Klear » Wed Jan 08, 2014 2:48 pm UTC

Kit. wrote:It is a cheap set-up; not so many people can immediately provide a non-silly answer to such a silly question as: "Why the fuck do you care?"

[citation needed]

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Re: 1314: "Photos"

Postby squall_line » Wed Jan 08, 2014 2:54 pm UTC

Von_Cheam wrote:My own view, for the record, is that we're not really intelligent enough to take in all the beauty and sophistication of a sunset, even if we were able to take in enough raw data to do so - which we're not*.

...

*We only see sunsets in 2D, from one viewpoint, over a very narrow part of the EM spectrum, etc. etc..


As much as I would like to be able to see gamma rays, hear X-rays, and smell dark matter, I've grown quite accustomed to these ridiculous gelatinous orbs in my skull, and appreciate their inherent limitations in seeing only a narrow part of the EM spectrum, and really value my ears that can only hear vibrations in the air.

Which is also why I like zoom lenses, telescopes, and quality stereophonic equipment, since they are all designed to enhance, rather than replace, those sensations.

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Re: 1314: "Photos"

Postby quenlinlom » Wed Jan 08, 2014 3:00 pm UTC

What is embarassing is that, in reality, the White Hat Guy in panel 5 would simply reply, "Whoa, relax, dude, I was just stating my opinion. No need to be so defensive, man." And then Cueball will be the one utterly embarassed and stuttering in panel 6.

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Re: 1314: "Photos"

Postby orthogon » Wed Jan 08, 2014 3:23 pm UTC

Also relevant to this is the work of Nobel laureate Daniel Kahneman as described in Thinking, Fast and Slow. He discovered that we seem care more about our "remembering self" than our "experiencing self", and many of us would choose not to bother having a wonderful, enjoyable and relaxing holiday in paradise if we knew that our memory of it would be erased afterwards. Taking photos is a service to our future remembering self, since it enhances the quality of those memories and preserves memories that we might otherwise forget.

A few years ago I went on a six-week trip around the world, and took lots of photos, some of which I printed. A few months later I happened to read an article which briefly mentioned sand mandalas. I had seen one of these in a temple in Japan, and at the time it had been one of the highlights of the trip, one of the most magnificent things I have ever seen; yet I had completely forgotten about it, mainly because I didn't have a photo (visitors were asked not to take photos in the temple).

I often worry that I do take too many photos instead of experiencing the moment properly, but I think there is an argument for it. Realising afterwards that one doesn't have a photo of something wonderful is quite a bad feeling.
xtifr wrote:... and orthogon merely sounds undecided.

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Re: 1314: "Photos"

Postby Kit. » Wed Jan 08, 2014 3:27 pm UTC

Klear wrote:
Kit. wrote:It is a cheap set-up; not so many people can immediately provide a non-silly answer to such a silly question as: "Why the fuck do you care?"

[citation needed]

So, if it's complete strangers who offend your sense of beauty, you don't care?

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Re: 1314: "Photos"

Postby Klear » Wed Jan 08, 2014 3:37 pm UTC

Kit. wrote:
Klear wrote:
Kit. wrote:It is a cheap set-up; not so many people can immediately provide a non-silly answer to such a silly question as: "Why the fuck do you care?"

[citation needed]

So, if it's complete strangers who offend your sense of beauty, you don't care?


Where did I say anything about offending my sense of beauty? O.o

What I'm saying is that it's not hard to reply to "Why the fuck do you care?" when talking to someone you know.

orthogon wrote:A few years ago I went on a six-week trip around the world, and took lots of photos, some of which I printed. A few months later I happened to read an article which briefly mentioned sand mandalas. I had seen one of these in a temple in Japan, and at the time it had been one of the highlights of the trip, one of the most magnificent things I have ever seen; yet I had completely forgotten about it, mainly because I didn't have a photo (visitors were asked not to take photos in the temple).


Great! So it worked out exactly the way mandalas should work out ;)
Last edited by Klear on Wed Jan 08, 2014 3:38 pm UTC, edited 1 time in total.

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Re: 1314: "Photos"

Postby speising » Wed Jan 08, 2014 3:38 pm UTC

orthogon wrote:Also relevant to this is the work of Nobel laureate Daniel Kahneman as described in Thinking, Fast and Slow. He discovered that we seem care more about our "remembering self" than our "experiencing self", and many of us would choose not to bother having a wonderful, enjoyable and relaxing holiday in paradise if we knew that our memory of it would be erased afterwards. Taking photos is a service to our future remembering self, since it enhances the quality of those memories and preserves memories that we might otherwise forget.

A few years ago I went on a six-week trip around the world, and took lots of photos, some of which I printed. A few months later I happened to read an article which briefly mentioned sand mandalas. I had seen one of these in a temple in Japan, and at the time it had been one of the highlights of the trip, one of the most magnificent things I have ever seen; yet I had completely forgotten about it, mainly because I didn't have a photo (visitors were asked not to take photos in the temple).

I often worry that I do take too many photos instead of experiencing the moment properly, but I think there is an argument for it. Realising afterwards that one doesn't have a photo of something wonderful is quite a bad feeling.


this. on my scotland trip, my camera went wonky on the second day. i felt completely cheated; how could i enjoy this trip, if i wouldn't be able to remember it? (having a miserable on board memory myself)

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Re: 1314: "Photos"

Postby pixeldigger » Wed Jan 08, 2014 3:43 pm UTC

Sometimes we sacrifice.
My wife and I went to see the final launch of the Space Shuttle.

She watched as it majestically climbed in chase of the ISS.
I watched my Camera as I snapped photos for us to remeber later.
I did pause to see the spectatcle myself, but felt a little cheated that I didn't get to just soak it in.
My wife however was able to bask in the moment, and we BOTH were able to relive the moment later as we looked at the photos.
While not a wonderful photographer, we found that I had captured things of wonder that she had missed while watching it IRL.
We both had a treasure to keep.

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Re: 1314: "Photos"

Postby Kit. » Wed Jan 08, 2014 3:52 pm UTC

Klear wrote:
Kit. wrote:
Klear wrote:
Kit. wrote:It is a cheap set-up; not so many people can immediately provide a non-silly answer to such a silly question as: "Why the fuck do you care?"

[citation needed]

So, if it's complete strangers who offend your sense of beauty, you don't care?


Where did I say anything about offending my sense of beauty? O.o

What I'm saying is that it's not hard to reply to "Why the fuck do you care?" when talking to someone you know.

Two words from the original context: "condescending stranger".

However, I still wonder who exactly was meant to be condescending in this comic.

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Re: 1314: "Photos"

Postby orthogon » Wed Jan 08, 2014 3:54 pm UTC

Klear wrote:
orthogon wrote:A few years ago I went on a six-week trip around the world, and took lots of photos, some of which I printed. A few months later I happened to read an article which briefly mentioned sand mandalas. I had seen one of these in a temple in Japan, and at the time it had been one of the highlights of the trip, one of the most magnificent things I have ever seen; yet I had completely forgotten about it, mainly because I didn't have a photo (visitors were asked not to take photos in the temple).


Great! So it worked out exactly the way mandalas should work out ;)

:D I had the niggling feeling that maybe there was something wrong with that as an example... Although I hadn't just forgotten what that particular mandala looked like, but had forgotten the thinginess of mandalas altogether, maybe even that is how it ought to be...
xtifr wrote:... and orthogon merely sounds undecided.

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Re: 1314: "Photos"

Postby Adam H » Wed Jan 08, 2014 4:01 pm UTC

For me, taking pictures detracts from the experience. I spend most of the time looking at the pictures I just took, trying to decide how good the picture is. Then the moment is gone, and I've wasted it practicing my amateur photography skills. So I've learned to not take pictures of experiences if I want to enjoy them.

It seems to me that what White Hat Guy is trying to say in the first panel is "I have done what those people are doing right now and I regreted it; therefore it seems to me like they are making poor decisions". Then his friend is an asshole, pulls out a strawman ("think how annoying it must be for a complete stranger to tell you..." when WHG didn't say anything to those people), and takes a picture of his flustered "friend" presumably to laugh at it later with all his real friends. Poor WHG is just trying to make conversation! Randall is so not in my head right now.
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Re: 1314: "Photos"

Postby Wumbo » Wed Jan 08, 2014 4:03 pm UTC

This is one of those comics where the author has really shown his ignorance and lack of research on the topic.

Taking photos is an artistic pursuit, and it can also just be a dumb hobby with no artistic inclinations and both are fine. Flash photography IS annoying to others around you. Having pictures taken of you without your permission is also annoying. Be considerate with your camera is what white hat guy is talking about but isn't able to put into words because his writer doesn't want to give depth and realism to the character.

Going to the argument about lived experience being tainted is missing the point of what is really annoying about this phenomenon. The argument applies better to watching TV instead of going outside, where it is directly a case of lived vs vicarious experience. But I think if you want to argue about having your camera out all the time detracting your experiences, you can make a pretty valid case. Taking photos of things or thinking always 'oh I've got to tell so and so about this!' is a fast way to think of the experience as if it's already happened, when it's still happening around you. If you analyse yourself, it makes you feel like you have ADD :P And then when you do go to share your experience, you realise you're not creating new experiences you're trying relive an experience you only half lived in the first place. The value of the event has become entirely 'how can I impress my friend' rather than what it really meant to you. This isn't annoying to me until people start sharing their half-lived experiences with me, which due to certain visual cues from my expression, doesn't happen all that often. Really this line of argument comes down to trying to open people's minds to the idea that they might get more joy in their lives if they just put their phone away for twenty minutes. You're right that it's misplaced in trying to assert why other people taking pictures all the time is annoying. Potentially that's your point, but because you paint cueball as the voice of wisdom and he says nothing about it, it just makes cueball, whitehat, and you all seem a little vapid. This is one of XKCD's rare misses, but it's gotta happen sometimes when you update several times a week for years.

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Re: 1314: "Photos"

Postby Purplepants77 » Wed Jan 08, 2014 4:05 pm UTC

I find most of the comments here to be ironic considering the message I got from the comic. Some of you touched on it a bit; the whole concept of live and let live, but I think its a little different. I think he's trying to say something more along the lines of:

I understand that some people like to take pictures of events as they happen while other people tend to think that it detracts from the true life experience of being there. The latter have a tendency to inform the former of their point of view to encourage the former to experience the event differently while the reverse is very rarely true. Whatever the reason may be, altruistic or otherwise, the simple fact of worrying/debating about how the other person experiences the moment detracts from the experiences of both individuals and therefore is a waste of time and a bit counter-intuitive in the first place. If you really want to enjoy the sunset, just watch it and ignore the people with the cameras. If someone really enjoys the sunset by taking a picture of it, but might enjoy it more if they watched it normally, you won't enhance their present or future experience(s) by telling them so. Instead it might make them angry, defensive, distracted, or annoyed, having the opposite effect. Do yourself, those involved, and all bystanders a favor and enhance everyone's experience, by minding your own business, which you should be doing anyway.


Granted there are scenarios (like the 'Mona Lisa' or 'sharing a moment together' examples) where this is not the case and the picture takers themselves detract from the experience of others. In my mind that's a completely different topic about human behavior, politeness, and sel(fish/less)ness and not what Randall was addressing here. I don't think there was anything wrong or cheap with the sunset example either, it might just be a choice from personal experience. The situation doesn't really matter because I think the point is the same either way, which he basically says with the title text.

Anyway, just my two cents. :)
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Re: 1314: "Photos"

Postby Western Rover » Wed Jan 08, 2014 4:14 pm UTC

Again Randall draws a great comic that perfectly encapsulates my thoughts or experiences, and then ruins it by putting in a sophomoric swear word. Please, a little more maturity.

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Re: 1314: "Photos"

Postby Red Hal » Wed Jan 08, 2014 4:24 pm UTC

I don't see any sophomoric swear words in that comic. Perhaps you mean "fuck"?
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Re: 1314: "Photos"

Postby cellocgw » Wed Jan 08, 2014 4:56 pm UTC

alcore wrote:I cannot help but think I've just read the most self-aware expression of self hatred that I have ever encountered.

Normally I like hat guy. He's a sociopath... but he targets the same things that annoy me... and my schadenfreude enjoys it. It's a bit uncomfortable to see him come up short this time as the butt of the joke.


No,... that's BHG. This is WHG.

Meanwhile, back in photo-complaint-land, why on earth do people post "47 new photos added to the collection 'dinner out'" to Facebook? Did they never hear of selective editing?
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Re: 1314: "Photos"

Postby cellocgw » Wed Jan 08, 2014 4:58 pm UTC

blowfishhootie wrote:
BAReFOOt wrote:In any case, when somebody starts using words like “condescending”, it’s a clear sign that he is an insecure idiot.


Ooh, can I play this game?!

"In any case, when somebody starts using words like 'insecure idiot,' it's a clear sign that he is an insecure idiot."


It would be more fun if your response had been "In any case, when somebody starts using words like 'insecure idiot,' it's a clear sign that he is condescending." :mrgreen:
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Re: 1314: "Photos"

Postby Klear » Wed Jan 08, 2014 5:01 pm UTC

cellocgw wrote:
blowfishhootie wrote:
BAReFOOt wrote:In any case, when somebody starts using words like “condescending”, it’s a clear sign that he is an insecure idiot.


Ooh, can I play this game?!

"In any case, when somebody starts using words like 'insecure idiot,' it's a clear sign that he is an insecure idiot."


It would be more fun if your response had been "In any case, when somebody starts using words like 'insecure idiot,' it's a clear sign that he is condescending." :mrgreen:


There are only two kinds of people...

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Re: 1314: "Photos"

Postby Znirk » Wed Jan 08, 2014 5:05 pm UTC

Kit. wrote:I hate it when people try to take pictures of a distant view with their flashes turned on.


I like it when people try to take flash pictures of a projection screen. "More power" indeed.

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Re: 1314: "Photos"

Postby Red Hal » Wed Jan 08, 2014 5:36 pm UTC

Klear wrote:
cellocgw wrote:
blowfishhootie wrote:
BAReFOOt wrote:In any case, when somebody starts using words like “condescending”, it’s a clear sign that he is an insecure idiot.


Ooh, can I play this game?!

"In any case, when somebody starts using words like 'insecure idiot,' it's a clear sign that he is an insecure idiot."


It would be more fun if your response had been "In any case, when somebody starts using words like 'insecure idiot,' it's a clear sign that he is condescending." :mrgreen:


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Actually, there are three kinds of people, those who believe in the law of the excluded middle, and those who don't.
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Re: 1314: "Photos"

Postby Von_Cheam » Wed Jan 08, 2014 5:42 pm UTC

Klear wrote: I meant that if I were to point out to a stranger that they shouldn't take so many picture and just enjoy the things and they told me to fuck off, they'd be completely in the right.


True, true!

squall_line wrote:As much as I would like to be able to see gamma rays, hear X-rays, and smell dark matter, I've grown quite accustomed to these ridiculous gelatinous orbs in my skull, and appreciate their inherent limitations in seeing only a narrow part of the EM spectrum, and really value my ears that can only hear vibrations in the air.

Which is also why I like zoom lenses, telescopes, and quality stereophonic equipment, since they are all designed to enhance, rather than replace, those sensations.


I was thinking of that, too. I was wondering whether I experience more aesthetic pleasure and wonder from a sunset seen through the naked eye or, say, looking at Jupiter through a good telescope - if the latter, is my enhanced appreciation similar to what a good photographer experiences with a well-taken sunset photograph, or a different phenomenon?

I'm not sure it affects my original point about the limitations of our ability to perceive beauty, though; I suspect there's an intellectual limitation to true perception/appreciation, rather than just a resolution/bandwidth problem.

Purplepants77 wrote:I think he's trying to say something more along the lines of:

I understand that some people like to take pictures of events as they happen while other people tend to think that it detracts from the true life experience of being there. The latter have a tendency to inform the former of their point of view to encourage the former to experience the event differently while the reverse is very rarely true. Whatever the reason may be, altruistic or otherwise, the simple fact of worrying/debating about how the other person experiences the moment detracts from the experiences of both individuals and therefore is a waste of time and a bit counter-intuitive in the first place. If you really want to enjoy the sunset, just watch it and ignore the people with the cameras. If someone really enjoys the sunset by taking a picture of it, but might enjoy it more if they watched it normally, you won't enhance their present or future experience(s) by telling them so. Instead it might make them angry, defensive, distracted, or annoyed, having the opposite effect. Do yourself, those involved, and all byssnders a favor and enhance everyone's experience, by minding your own business, which you should be doing anyway.


Anyway, just my two cents. :)


I don't get where the 'tendency to inform' comes in? WHG doesn't mention anything to the photographers (presumably lest he diminish their enjoyment, such as it is), but to Cueball. I agree that stopping somebody in the middle of trying to photograph a sunset and basically explaining to them the gist of this forum thread would detract from their experience (and yours when they subsequently punch you on the nose), but I'm not sure it's so easy for people like WHG (and probably myself, I'm afraid!) to just happily ignore them.

Such people tend to get frustrated and upset when seeing people behaving in a manner sub-optimal for their own happiness. Perhaps you're right, and we'd be better off if we could just worry about our own happiness alone and let them get on with it - but perhaps if we did complain we may ruin this sunset for them but improve numerous future sunsets. Sadly, I expect it's the former..

Hmm. What's the exchange rate between two cents' worth of opinion and a tuppen'orth of opinion?

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Re: 1314: "Photos"

Postby Pfhorrest » Wed Jan 08, 2014 6:07 pm UTC

Von_Cheam wrote:
Red Hal wrote:There are only two kinds of people...
Actually, there are three kinds of people, those who believe in the law of the excluded middle, and those who don't.

No, there are 10 kinds of people: those who understand hexadecimal, and F the rest.

Oh and on the actual subject of the thread: I find that taking photographs of trips and things greatly enhances my enjoyment of them. I'm naturally a very hard to impress person and will see something that's really pretty cool and just go "that's nice" after a glance and move on. When I got a camera and finally caved in to pressure from others to start taking pictures of cool places I go, my artist's eye got tuned in to the experiences I was having, and I began looking specifically for things that look cool enough to be worth taking pictures of, and the coolest places to view them from, so I could get the coolest pictures to share. It also made me more enthusiastic about the things themselves because I'm capturing an experience to share with someone else, and I really like showing people things and performing and so on -- giving other people enjoyable experiences -- so having an audience of sorts to present my experiences to turned them from "sure let's go somewhere pretty and look at stuff" to "allow me to show you the wondrous adventure of a lifetime upon which I am now embarking!" In a way, it makes me look at things through other people's less-jaded, more-enthusiastic eyes, instead of my own, cynical, "yeah that's nice" worldview.
Last edited by Pfhorrest on Wed Jan 08, 2014 6:14 pm UTC, edited 1 time in total.
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Re: 1314: "Photos"

Postby wolfticket » Wed Jan 08, 2014 6:10 pm UTC

Why I care:

A) People holding up loads of screens in front of what I'm trying to look at is annoying, especially if the screens are brighter than what I'm looking at.

B) I've been through the sense that something should be recorded rather than just looked at, because it is somehow too important or beautiful to just look at. My experience was that it usually detracted from my experience and clouded rather than enhanced my memories of the event. but the desire to record something is still a compelling one.
In other words, not only are they annoying me, but based on my own experience they're doing it for a good reason.

However caring and/or moaning is distinct from a desire to impose my world view on others, and a brief aside from finding a better spot so I can enjoy it with my own eyes.

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Re: 1314: "Photos"

Postby Klear » Wed Jan 08, 2014 6:12 pm UTC

Pfhorrest wrote:No, there are 10 kinds of people: those who understand hexadecimal, and F the rest.

Bravo. I went from "Not that old joke again" to laughing loudly in the middle of that sentence.

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Re: 1314: "Photos"

Postby Hiferator » Wed Jan 08, 2014 6:40 pm UTC

Andromeda321 wrote:I kinda love how this thread is also filled with people who are posting here who clearly overlooked the comic's message of "don't judge people over things that make them happy and do not affect you." Which is clearly something good for Randall to remind everyone of considering how few posting here are thinking of it.

This.

(Even though I'm sure someone could argue, you are judging the people posting in this thread by this, but that would just end up with recursion.)

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Re: 1314: "Photos"

Postby Steve the Pocket » Wed Jan 08, 2014 6:50 pm UTC

Von_Cheam wrote:...but I'm not sure it's so easy for people like WHG (and probably myself, I'm afraid!) to just happily ignore them.

Such people tend to get frustrated and upset when seeing people behaving in a manner sub-optimal for their own happiness.

You make a good point, here. The message of this strip is that you should not invalidate other people's feelings, but in order to convey that message, you have to invalidate someone's feelings. It's a vicious cycle that human nature makes it impossible to resolve.
cephalopod9 wrote:Only on Xkcd can you start a topic involving Hitler and people spend the better part of half a dozen pages arguing about the quality of Operating Systems.

Baige.

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Re: 1314: "Photos"

Postby dp2 » Wed Jan 08, 2014 7:21 pm UTC

Red Hal wrote:I don't see any sophomoric swear words in that comic. Perhaps you mean "fuck"?

That would be a sophomoric swear word, yes. It has zero meaning, at least in this context. When you can't express your emotion with anything other than a meaningless word that someone else might find offensive, that's pretty much the definition of a sophomoric swear word.

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Re: 1314: "Photos"

Postby p1t1o » Wed Jan 08, 2014 7:22 pm UTC

Sorry, not sold. My girlfriend instagramming her bacon and eggs with a blue-grey filter is still irritating.

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Re: 1314: "Photos"

Postby drummerpatch » Wed Jan 08, 2014 7:25 pm UTC

Steve the Pocket wrote:
Von_Cheam wrote:...but I'm not sure it's so easy for people like WHG (and probably myself, I'm afraid!) to just happily ignore them.

Such people tend to get frustrated and upset when seeing people behaving in a manner sub-optimal for their own happiness.

You make a good point, here. The message of this strip is that you should not invalidate other people's feelings, but in order to convey that message, you have to invalidate someone's feelings. It's a vicious cycle that human nature makes it impossible to resolve.


Image

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Re: 1314: "Photos"

Postby Purplepants77 » Wed Jan 08, 2014 7:29 pm UTC

Von_Cheam wrote:
I don't get where the 'tendency to inform' comes in? WHG doesn't mention anything to the photographers (presumably lest he diminish their enjoyment, such as it is), but to Cueball. I agree that stopping somebody in the middle of trying to photograph a sunset and basically explaining to them the gist of this forum thread would detract from their experience (and yours when they subsequently punch you on the nose), but I'm not sure it's so easy for people like WHG (and probably myself, I'm afraid!) to just happily ignore them.

Such people tend to get frustrated and upset when seeing people behaving in a manner sub-optimal for their own happiness. Perhaps you're right, and we'd be better off if we could just worry about our own happiness alone and let them get on with it - but perhaps if we did complain we may ruin this sunset for them but improve numerous future sunsets. Sadly, I expect it's the former..

Hmm. What's the exchange rate between two cents' worth of opinion and a tuppen'orth of opinion?



I suppose you have a point about WHG not directly addressing the photographers. I guess you could correct my previous statement of "tendency to inform...." to something more like "tendency comment on..." or even "be annoyed by/complain about" as you move more towards the other extreme. I think it holds true to the same idea though because a lot of it is not only about how much others enjoy the situation, but how much you do as well. I might venture to say: If sunset picture taking truly decreases others' enjoyment of the sunset, then taking pictures of sunsets is to their experience as worrying about it is to your experience.

Now, its true, ignoring the group of picture-takers might be difficult to do in some cases; I imagine the setup shown in the comic might put some distracting people between you and the view and it would probably make it harder for you to enjoy the sunset to its fullest. At the same time you can't expect every pretty sunset to take place while you're sitting on a beach or a hillside in the country with your significant other. You could be in your office with a partially obscured view from the window, or at the movies completely unaware, or even in a car wishing you didn't have to squint so much to see where you were going. I think the idea of enjoying it to its fullest translates the same: You're there, and you happen to see a breathtaking sunset that takes you by surprise. Enjoy that particular sunset to the extent that you can from where you are no matter who your with or what that means for you- just don't worry yourself or others over how anyone else chooses to enjoy it because it will only make the whole experience less pure than it already is. Of course the sunset can be a metaphor for any fleeting beauty in life, physical or otherwise.

Good point about the exchange rate, I'm not really sure. Why don't I let you keep the tuppence and the 2 cents in exchange for the unicycle and we'll call it even, hmm?
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Re: 1314: "Photos"

Postby philsov » Wed Jan 08, 2014 7:56 pm UTC

p1t1o wrote:Sorry, not sold. My girlfriend instagramming her bacon and eggs with a blue-grey filter is still irritating.


True. If all I want to do is eat my breakfast with her and she's getting sidetracked and not eating it with me, it does ruin my experience.
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Re: 1314: "Photos"

Postby Kit. » Wed Jan 08, 2014 7:58 pm UTC

Hiferator wrote:(Even though I'm sure someone could argue, you are judging the people posting in this thread by this, but that would just end up with recursion.)

Which reminded me of the recent Dilbert...

Spoiler:
Image

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Re: 1314: "Photos"

Postby xkcdfan » Wed Jan 08, 2014 8:09 pm UTC

Klear wrote:I was always like the white-hat guy in this. Then recently there was this study:
http://online.wsj.com/news/articles/SB10001424052702304858104579264653611449962
I used to photograph a lot and stopped when I suspected that this was the case. Good to see some empirical data backing me in this.

And to answer cueball's question: Why the fuck do I care how someone else enjoys a sunset? Because they're my friends and family if I'm saying this to them, not complete strangers, and I care about them.


Counterpoint to that article.


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