"....We tend to think of organized religions as the source of human morality, and yet, the crafting of an object is an expression of moral structure that likely predates any commandment or moral precept. Objects are made with care or they are not. Objects are made with an eye toward useful beauty, or they are not. Objects are made to last, or they are not. If we were truly concerned about building a society in which people care for each other, there is no better way than to engage our children in craftsmanship....." - Doug Stowe, Saw Zen: A Craftsman's Guide to Practicality and SpiritI know it is crazy to quote myself from another blog, but this quote makes rare sense in that it's concise and I'm sticking to it. Part of my responsibility as a writer is to put words behind the creative experience that they may be useful to those less inclined to say what they do or reflect on its value. Human beings have always had morality, and long before organized religion, in that they made beautiful and useful things and cared for each other.
In the meantime I'm on my way to Marc Adams School of Woodworking to teach for 7 days. Woodworkers are my kind. We speak the same language, about joints and quality of workmanship. We explore design, and in our own small ways attempt to make the world a better place.
Joe Miller sent a link to this video, Humane Representation of Thought, which, though about software in part, has to do with the way abstraction can be used to build relationship and illustrate thought. Whether involved in woodworking or writing, or the development of programs, what we are doing is trying to illustrate and share thought, and hopefully thoughtfulness, as is the case in caring craftsmanship. Ivan Illich wrote about "Tools for Conviviality." I believe you will find this video presentation by Bret Victor to be along the same lines. The tools of both software and hardware, as well as those in the wood shop can be directed toward a more meaningful life and richer culture for all.
Make, fix, create and grow from the experience.