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Posted: 10 May 2023
Inspiration: Conversations with Laurel Schwulst

Yi-Fu Tuan:

Tools and machines enlarge man's sense of space and spaciousness. Space that is measurable by the reach of one's out-stretched arms is a small world compared with one that is measured by the distance of a spear throw or arrow shot.

To create "doorways" that welcome people into explore with me, I've been experimenting with locating some of what I'm doing and learning in places where people are already spending their time.

Today, Laurel offered some language for how I might frame the presence I'm seeking to establish on services like Instagram and TikTok:

Tools and frames for thinking and feeling.

This language resonated with me. To embody it, I feel drawn to sketching out what "tools" means to me in this context.

I'm going to start with a simple list...

I feel attracted to tools that:

  • Are upfront/accessible
    • Require minimal investment for people to start using and ben realize value from
    • Fulfill a clear function
  • Empower
    • Explicitly afford people the ability to adapt, extend, or otherwise configure to fit the unique attributes of the context the need they are trying to meet exists within
    • Can be combined and used to improvise new solutions
  • Meet people where they are
    • They compliment/extend what people already know/mgiht be doing.
  • Are humble
    • Are self-contained, independent, and tightly scoped to specific situations and needs. Read: they do not "need" anything from you.
  • Inspire movement
    • Help people orient themselves in relation to a desired future state
    • Help people see the forces and interactions that could help to explain the state they find themselves in at present
    • Help people move through "blockers" that are preventing movement
    • Enlarge peoples' sense of where they are capable of going and how they are capable of being
    • Help smooth and structure a facet of a complex movement

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