using them

touch this set

the timer watch

delicate fabrics spin

soak spin

followed by a wash programme

push dial touch

a wash number record

this in a programme

in the future every week

master this machine

see remote touch

control on the screen

on the advice slip

or thought required

insert card face up

to it black stripe

to right take your card

take your cash promptly

select take your ticket

type of ticket

this machine destination

takes new 5 pound notes only

take your change

exit only retain ticket


this time

some arbitrary


12.00 12.00 12.00


irrelevantly blinking blinking

your video

at you

programme it


push record wait


really that good

with machines

the ones you love

you know

now well

are all right

before that

have heed

the ones you don't know


machine like

doing it all

without thinking

but I'm not one of them

I am thinking doing this

using this machine like

crazy but I'm not

concentrating on this doing

there are others

to think about

motor skill

muscular activity

just did it

about how to make it work

how to do it

this way this time



from hand to arm

to the machine outside me

extend myself


contradicting metaphors

Ramon Lull

Mallorcan mystic's calculating bush

waving patterns of leaf symbols

posing questions

giving answers when the waving stops

Ars Magna

calculating truth on disagreeing



gear settings of arithmetic

Babbage's little differences

The US census evolves

IBM before

the electronic computer

there were great beast mechanicals

gears grinding punchcards

metal teeth

stuck into problems

smoothly clicking in and out

pointing to the answer

punching it out

determine action

driven to abstraction

a conclusion

bad or can calculating

branching Pascal conditionals

while loops sense us

Big Blue's

eating holes

whole patterns

spewing out hole-patterns

a pretence of numbers

then the box of tricks

names of the first electronic computers

escape me

refuse to be remembered




comes to mind

but its not that

sounds like that but

the trigger isn't working

is not firing the correct

the most useful associations




that is the name I was after

suddenly it was there

Emacs was the way to it

but how

there was no mechanical calculation

the jump made beyond the mechanicals


does Darwin recognise this type of step


these new machines

boxes of tricks

another metaphor

they weren't in boxes

nor were there any tricks

electrons jump

to organise

racks of valves

bundled cables

energy gluttons gestate

feat of exertion

sucking power

oozing heat

but the beast teeth grinding

mechanical metaphors

have to go


IBM heats offices across America


now we have electronic wizardry

voltage demons

exciting values and gadgets

push through the answer

on off

yes no

zero one

high low

transmutes electric potential into number

the alchemy of digital arithmetic

a pretence of numbers


but not the name


comes from somewhere else

remember Los Alamos

workplace of the first atom bomb

there was a computer department

the department had many computers

they were all human

all mathematicians

were the bomb's

computed the bomb

were the bomb's computers

making the necessary calculations

the computer comes from places like this

people were the first computers

it was a standard term



after the first wizardry

the word computer is used

the boxes of alchemical tricks

these electronic demons

become computers



they remember nothing

but the pulse as it passes


in Manchester a device is invented

it can hold ten bits

zeros or ones

think of ten of them

in England they call this device


in America they call it



memory wins

digital computers now have memories


and even then

when these things

can barely do anything well

a computer

one of the humans that makes them

asks the question

can these machines think

could we build a computer

a voltage demon

that is a brain like ours

the way we think

becoming a metaphor


the game starts

artificial intelligence

brains could be made as computers

it is difficult work

being clever is one thing

telling a machine to be clever

means much more than being clever yourself

you have to know

much more about yourself

than anyone ever has


tell a machine to do something

you don't know or understand yourself

how you think

to reach conclusions

make so many decisions effortlessly

the metaphor changes

try and describe humans as computers

computers are more understandable

perhaps the brain is a computer

computers have behaviour


appear to make mistakes

appear clever

can do things we cannot

are quick

very quick


the brain is a computer

in the way we compute

animals are automata

people are different

men more so

that was Descartes

but now we are all automata


whose metaphor is it

I think

therefore I am the metaphor


do we notice this

becoming our own metaphors

feel the metaphors changing us

constructing reality

to be sought out

re-exposed for what they are

tools to live with

to use

the basis of understanding


for what eludes us


the brain is not a computer

there is too much going on

have not perfect recall

do not store information

patterns remember

associations I recreate

experiences I remember

I don't store

I am constantly associating

recreating memories

I might never have known

I do this all the time

thousands of times at the same time

I don't know everything I think about

it all goes on all at once

some of it I am aware of

that is my consciousness

my memory is dynamic

working mind holding attention

webs of tasks

muscular tissue symbols

intimate detail to represent them

too soon

to be an image of

books and computers



the machine kingdom

doors open

before you

close without you

toilet seats

unfold new skins

before your eyes

sheath you

from the dirt

hot air

dries you

when and where

you need it

think wish

to be satisfied


solutions to little inconveniences

automatically determined

made to work

you pay

as much as you'll take

a lot just to stay


what works

here are migrants

subjected to

mechanical advantages

on the one hand

absence of any encounter

hard surfaces

leave the body

machine interactions

something inside responds

does anything change me

behind the interface

your reaction with

buttons mice levers

sits nicely in the hand

touch a nerve

power of position

make use of commands

hand eye co-ordinates

subject to the users whims

but to be obeyed

the machines to process

the technologies to master


using a telephone

not knowing how it works

does not know

manage to do

all that is done

feel to not know

sometimes clumsy

writing this

want it to feel good

to like it

when read

what was felt

when it was read

away from it all



can you live with

machines that have changed

nothing new or scholarly

how many opinions

will be logical

what is wanting

emotionally enabled

clever light


personal extensions

as little as possible

marginal automata

use things all the time

cannot differentiate


The Digitiser

encoding modelling abstracting

the discontinuous mind

continues to dissect


of all discrete species

normal pervert

human machine

terrorist freedom-fighter

mind brain

artificial differences

telling to choose

made up mind

play this game

be sympathetic


refuse to change

can only be the one thing

change over time

punishment and crime

pragmatic distinctions

make all the same

return to the difference

soft engineering

mending itself

growing back together

brittle atmosphere

eke out an existence




is made of this

I can remember the first letter

not the word

it begins with ...


I am usually right in this way

why do I know this

I will remember

the harder I try

the less likely

to make the connection

between the letter I have and

the word I want to remember

it will come to me

very often I'm right

about the first letter

sometimes wrong

I can use this letter

to get back

the word I want

the name of a place

someone to name


train part of yourself to do this better

walk down a street

in your mind

through a temple

placing words you want to remember

alongside doorways


unusual architectural features


columns and decorations

niches for icons


when you want to remember


down the right street

through the appropriate temple

look for the word you want

where you left it

keep going

'till you get

to the one you want


making the effort to make associations

the mind of a mnemonist

does it work


can people remember in this way

why do I know it starts with a ...


I can remember the plots of films

what happened


images and associations

but the name of the film

is always difficult for me

as with names

who acted in it


I can often remember how

to get back somewhere

I have once been

driven there or walked

can remember


bits of road

sections of footpath


alignments features

twists and bends

odd dips and climbs

can recreate in my mind

a remembering journey

as I try to recreate

the journey for real


almost always this works

yet I can't remember the names

of towns villages

road numbers

except perhaps

by first letter or rhyme


district and circle

the end of the westbound platform

Victoria station

the London underground

where the subway comes up

from other lines

the eastmost end of the platform

always smelled to me like breakfasts cooked

at my grandmothers house in Monmouth

pleasant memories

a remembered smell or

a smell that reminds me

various associated things

people places furniture

a tablecloth

as well as smells


how could I recreate this smell

of eggs bacon

bubble and squeak

exactly as if it were still

smellably real

not smell memory

a remembered smell

olfactory associations

allow me to place a smell from my past

because of some smelly place

on the London underground

I make associations

out of smells


my memory for names

I have little

knew his surname

was a colour

White eventually

but his first name

no associations for that

no construction

to apply

to re-think it


do you remember how to sign your name

give your signature

if I think about it

I can't do it properly

and now I always think about it

and my signature changes


I learnt to do it as a motor skill

a muscular activity memory

I just did it

never thought about how to do it

can't remember how to do it

without conscious symbols

words pictures

memorable associations


I can do it repeatedly


from other memories

can re-create


the patterns of movements

in my hand and arm

as long as I don't know

I am thinking about it


associations can be of anything

the re-creating can be all

useful pleasant painful unpleasant

sometimes something

I just want to forget

afraid to remember

sometime I am tricked

into remembering badly


remember Freud

I will not forget

to deal with him later


what would I be without my poor memory

how can I remember

so many things so badly

is this poor memory

I can do so many other

clever things with it

poor is the wrong word


bad specific recall

not store

something else wonderful


the ability to recreate

desired wanted memories

from patterned associations

don't be deceived by the metaphors

deal with more


patterns to match

feels a good match

feels like what I know

colour his associations

re-apply to think

first white


I have little constructions for that



Turing machines

an abstraction of the machine

not doing working

not converting

energy into movement

but denoting the ability

to change state

to notate actions

mapping states

from the ability to perform

in one state

to another state

after the action is taken

charting sequences of steps


here is an infinite tape

symbols in a long line

reading the tape

changing state

non-mechanically cumbersome

logically discrete elegant

adds up to

an effective procedure

read the next symbol

from the tape

write a symbol

onto the tape

move left or right

one space

along the tape

read a value

write a value


a change of state

more than the transmission

of force even

some parts of clockwork

such as the ratchet

an information storage device

spring an energy

storage device

we cannot explain

objects which are clearly living


reading the tape

writing the tape

moving left or right

coming to a decision

pointing to where

the answer starts

nothing reads

moves writes or decides

it has to be seen

that way

all that is computable

all that is not

you can't always tell

it will stop


what does it feel

to be mechanical

and reflect

on being mechanical

and still be mechanical

effective to solve problems

yet paradoxically

the halting problem

not being able to stop

not not being able to stop

when knowing

if or not it will

the idea of an algorithm

precisely described

entails language

and being mechanical


categories of humans

carried out by machines

means machine usage

and technologies

are all the people

with different machines

species culture dependant

in what furnace

a program behaves

thy brain technology


nothing more than logic

is too big

to get your mind around

it reassures us

the word computer

means the person

purveyor of effective procedures

who is to be replaced

by a Turing machine


the thesis is

culturally dependable

a description of the machine

to be animated by

the universal Turing Machine




with information

we are young



evolutionary eye blink

evolved around us

ahead of us


the argument

a theory of the universe

knowledge without

a theory of it

do not understand

we know this

did the theory

demand us

the universe

complete with information

three billion years

before it was useful


more than pattern

separable from intelligence

what do we think

required this concept

we have not evolved using

human information

theory imposed on

external aspects of behaviour


external to us


artefacts of information

we experience only second hand

through translation into

our own ways of remembering

I am not a database

expert system neural network programme PC games console

I can understand so

sufficient effort training intelligent application

I don't remember anything

have not perfect recall

the mind plays clever tricks

memory deceives me

but that is my mind

cleverly deceiving

being me


the mind does not work the way

we would like it to

we would like to think it does

any way we presuppose it to


how do I know I have remembered correctly

I can't remember anything

have no memory

cannot forget

can only loose the ability

to recreate

something I once knew

only temporarily


you will almost certainly

recreate if you wish

as you

I have the ability

to recreate

I think this is memory


remember me to them

memory is selective

I seem to recreate Freud saying


popular little organs

chopped out

free stylus

nematode worm

remembered wrong

scratched ego

I the mind

eye id brain ID

underneath it all

the guts

but not memory


start again

Fraudian slop

am I supposed to be sorry

typing slop for slip

Fraud for Freud

Fraudulent joke

tip of the tongue


there really is a subconscious

not a place

there if you can't

point to it

object of study

not to hold

visibly real

set of activities


the subconscious jungles

countless associations

patterns to make sense

in the light

stimuli requests

the world outside

what are we without

which is what

without us


repressed fact memory experience

being an illogical jumble

information by association

Freud was

wrong about the subconscious

if it is

possible associations

blank patterns

ready to associate

conscious and subconscious

related by activity

there is nothing hidden

there is everything to create

there is no information


too recently for us

physiologically to deal with

is external to us


we can work with it

not as the way we think

or has information

always been there

primitive as gravity

not this universe without it

there might be

a conscious and subconscious mind

there is the mind working

the mind that enables work creating

through holding and making associations

there are all the things I am thinking about

there are the associations

patterns that represent

possible webs of knowledge

to create memories

that allow me


I also create things

not represented in symbols

tasks muscular activities

smells textures

insights knowing truths

remembered in great detail

without symbolic structures

to represent them


do I have symbolic structures

to represent anything

I think not

nothing I remember

by such associations

symbols are books and computers

I have associations

we are too young to have evolved

to cope with information

our brains are little different

from those of our ancestors

70,000 years ago

did they work with

process information

in any sense

that we understand it

is this true

when information first appeared

was first recognised in the universe

that difference

technology information people

go together

what is the history

to answer this


to remember the name

of a Roman fort near Hadrian's Wall

start with


that's wrong

Roman St Albans I am reminded

V is right

the first letter certain

a type of curry


sounds like the first syllables


the word I want







at a conscious level

I can use words

think in words I can recreate

patterns to put together sounds

shapes perhaps

I do not remember words

there are no words in my brain


without this form

of remembering recreating

there would be no poetry

perhaps a lesser art

no remembering of images through association

without this creative remembering

of things never known

to seem naturally recreated

the alchemy of association

there could be no poetry

no other art

is quite like this

abstraction that sits

naturally in the mind



the complete Luddite

being without technology

being not human

only human beings can be

complete Luddites

being without technology

to become

the paradoxical machine

the being that threatens

the working exercise of fascination


shallow discourse of letters

we tend to think

what we do

is more important

logic but is it true

art but is it less rigorous

true but isn't that many possible definitions


practical probabilities

approximate solutions

satisfactory answers

the increasing certainty

the best model

for the experimental data

a close match

between experiment and theory

true science

but who doesn't talk of truth

the essence of being

captures the spirit

looks deeply to use

revels in the soul

true technology art

meaninglessly correct


I am my technologies

and the technologies

before your eyes

to use technology

in and out of me

criss-cross between me

technologies I am


who has no technology

and the technologies to use

language poetry art applied paint

materials the thought of

organising pitch tone criticism

deconstruct how you like colour

mechanism of metaphor simulation


the apologies for its technology

and breaks things

being human

a complete Luddite

is a being without technology

who destroys all machines

shuns all new technologies

except saxophones

and other emotions


another reasoning self belief intuition

who doesn't believe

the counterpoints of technology

one and the other

complete incomplete

the paradoxical Luddite

one without the other


never trust anyone

without being



self awareness

At the cinema

I watch a film

on the television

it does not matter

the film is absorbing

if I forget myself

where I am

I do not watch the film

I experience it

I am there with it all happening

I am not an audience

but a being there

to not change or interfere

cannot see the future

the first time

but have a greater view

than the celluloids


sometimes I come too and surprised

how taken out of myself I have been


self awareness

self consciousness

can be distracting

would spoil the film

if I did not lose them


I can think to myself

this is me alive

self conscious of this

evolutionary vanity perhaps

unless it helps me to survive

how did this happen

when do I need

to be aware of myself

perhaps there are important things

I do well when I have

not to forget myself

other things I do

I have to forget myself


this poem grew

from reflecting on

the acts of myself


of research of self

I am thinking about

what I am


what I've been


what is possible


I am not doing this

to make myself special

anyone can do this

in their own way

something of me I am

one of you for I

read anyone read

all of us


not me

ego low




a vital characteristic

of individuals in societies

are chimps self aware

do they need to be

to function in chimp society


self awareness

regulating to help

individuals survive societies

where instinctive behaviour

may not always be most helpful


here is a contradiction

I can approximate distance

but have to learn how to measure it

suppose these

are both the same technique

then I have to learn

how to do something

I already know


that I should have

knowledge to do things instinctively

which is unavailable

when I think to use it


much of what I am

I am unaware of

cannot be

have no access to

I cannot think

to use certain movements

muscular patterns

such as signing my name

hidden from self awareness


perhaps no conscious

language to recreate

muscular activities

it is perhaps

intrinsically hidden from

me as I am well aware

regarding myself


we buy a computer game

my son

gets the box out of the bag

thinks in his distraction

he is standing next to his mother

shows the box to the unknown

person next to him

starts talking

about the box pictures

I say come on Robin lets go

he realises

embarrassed and blushing

becomes very self aware

will probably always remember

try not to let it happen again


self awareness is the means

we learn social lessons

jump beyond the instinctive

adapt our behaviour to better survive



still in use

I feel shut in

the tension of

the muscle in my leg

that sound

is a packet of mints

being torn open

cannot speak

enforcers of nothing


the rules of business


write this

feel the pen in hand

the pen

does not feel

my hand

nor the paper

it slides over

does not know

I can write in my head


the different meanings of awkwardness


I don't doubt

our objects and machines

around me

there is almost nothing

I can see from here

someone has not

made placed

need us all this

what do people think


the job is boring

terrifies separates distinguishes

me machines objects

what else I am

the people

I know

the clothes

I wear

the machines

I use

the things

I don't know

most are not human

cannot all reciprocate identity

make me make

them and remain


all this

it is true

non of this

labels us

and part of all this

what it is

to be

at best human

to look forward

it should matter

to think back

cheese snaps


artefacts evolve

flash out

objects to memory

figments of my information

imaginations to associate

recallectable technologies


to be animal

not hardware now

a sad note then

beware what is

normally mechanical


it must have rained

        jam acid jazz

she has a red escort

        approaching traffic

the wind gets up

        speaking in clichés

reflexive account

        the outline of an arm

touch pneumatic senses

        executive tumblers

talking in tongues

        meeting your meeting needs

armlobes nipples earpits

        come to rest

in a restricted zone

        escape recognition


        see the way out


        my mind wanders