What is "Esoteric Sensationalism"? The first domain name I ever registered back in 1997 was "esoteric-sensationalism.com". In those long-gone foggy pre-millenial days of the "World Wide Web", I did not think of The Internet as a marketing tool, and wanted a domain name that was intentionally obscure, hard to understand and hard to type! The 1990s seems like a lifetime ago now, and my thinking has evolved (or possibly devolved)... For this new reboot of the site, I have shortened the domain name to sensationalism.co, but the philosophy remains basically the same...
Esoteric Sensationalism is dedicated to the exploration of random processes and experimentation in creative writing and music composition. Randomness has long been identified as a source of inspiration - not only for authors of fiction, poetry, music and visual art, but also for businesspeople, scientists or creative thinkers of any type. Techniques such as "cut-up", "collage", "cut 'n' mix" and "mashup" are all based on a process of recombining previously unrelated words, sounds or images. In business, this process is often referred to as "lateral thinking" - a way to derail the train of thought from it's linear, predictable route into more uncharted, creative territories. The theory section of this site explores the rationale behind the uses of randomness and other forms of experimentation for the purpose of creative inspiration.
New for winter 2014:
Esoteric Sensationalism spawned a number of offshoot domains over the years. Now some of the defunct, languishing or abandoned sites are being brought back under the E.S. banner: The first three are focussed on the mainstay of E.S: "experimental writing":
- (Mash)Mashup - mixing different content sources to produce an original piece of writing
- ROBOPOEM - the algorithms and associated Windows application used to generate randon poetry
- BOT.ROBOPOEM - this site was originally the launch page of an online demo of the random poetry algorithm, but now simply delves deeper into the purpose and function of computer poetry
New addition for Spring 2014:
MYRANSOMNOTE - A site devoted to the art of making ransom note art
Cut'n'Mix (With ROBOPOEM), Wizzypage, ROBOCOLLAGE
These Windows applications previously published as shareware through the affiliated sites mentioned above have now been re-released and are available for free download from:
The Internet Annex Downloads Page
September 2016: News from the "Artificial Mind":
In the 1990s, I developed an experimental writing technique which I described as a "Rorschach Word Pool".
The process involves collecting a pool of words randomly selected from recent magazines, books and newspapers.
The objective is to reassemble the words to create (or reveal) a message (you are allowed to reconjugate and insert connecting words like "the", "and", "to" etc.). Occasionally I like to have a "Rorschach Word Pool" session simply because I find it to be strangely relaxing and meditative. Recently, the output of a session was strikingly coherent, and seemed to convey a message particularly relevant to the times we live in. Here it is, in the exact form that is was transmitted to me:
"The rumour is that petroleum is thoroughly dead. The economic underpinnings of the energy crisis
are based on a pyschological coup: Detroit-era politics installed a smoke-and-mirrors language of
excitement where youth could equate wage-earning with revolutionary flight from the congested
thinking of school and corporate consciousness.
The MYTH OF INNOVATION which powers the dominant culture is exposed as illusion.
The constant improvement in productivity resulting from reduced cost of computers
and information technology carries with it the postmodern warning of a double-edged sword:
When machines do all of the farming, meat packing, and communicating, redundant employees
ultimately become cumbersome and in danger of being vanished from history.
The present "Technological Revolution" is a retreat from LIFE:
A sterile and bankrupt condition of PURE ILLUSION!"