What I don't like about the story of the Oculus Rift is that we initially believed that it was a neat project made by people who cared deeply about technology and its creative uses. Now it looks like those same people care about money. Some might tell you that human beings can have multiple motivations, pursue multiple, sometimes-conflicting values. These same "some" might go on to say that human minds will adjust their values in response to changing circumstances and new information.
Humbug and nonsense.
This notion of humans holding multiple values reminds me of what I really hate about the Oculus Rift. I hate that it displays two images of the same object at the same time, and those two images aren't precisely the same. They differ slightly, which is to say that they portray lies. This is exactly what I hate about Picasso's Cubism, too. Which image is the true image? Can the Oculus Rift ever be trusted, built as it is around this visual double-speak? It should therefore come as no surprise that the entire enterprise of developing the Oculus Rift, from Kickstartr launch onward, was premised on falsehood.
Know what I like about the Oculus Rift? I like the name. "Rift" especially denotes a break, a fissure, a chasm. I know what you're thinking, though: "Erik, rifts are also connections between alternate realities!"
Poppycock. Any rational person understands that alternate or secondary definitions in dictionaries are only placed there to make wrong people stop complaining. The first definition is the right one, and any change or deviation is necessarily an error.
Seriously, next you'll be asking if I think "videogames" is an acceptable noun. Blasphemy.
But there's something to that notion of single definitions. A lot of things could stand to be a degree or two less complicated. Take, for instance, video games. Personally, I think most games could do with at least one fewer dimension. I think it's a distraction to developers and players alike to have to care about third dimensions in a story-based game. The story needs two dimensions: temporal and relational. Semi-3D shooters like Doom did just fine without really worrying about the Z axis, and so should the rest of games. Imagine how much time and effort we'd all save!
Just imagine: A return to 2D Grand Theft Autos, reminding us of the old Ghostbusters game; 2D Call Of Duty; 1D Pong. Glorious.
Which brings me to my real point: generations.
Now, I'll admit that I've stumbled here in the past — I owe that admission to you, dear reader — but generations should have fixed and agreed-upon beginnings and ends. None of this flimsy stuff about whether a person remembers something, or whether they faced a certain sort of circumstances when they entered the workforce.
And absolutely nothing about ideology or what sort of thing a particular person thinks is valuable or important or threatening. No, what matters is the date on which someone was born. I don't care if you grew up in rural New Guinea or Tokyo or on the set of Saved By The Bell, your memories or pop-cultural associations mean nothing against the cold march of time.
So let me set this straight. I've seen Generation X ending and Millennials beginning at just about every date between 1975 and 1985, but the correct split is midnight on a particular night in November, 1982. On this there can be no debate, because I was born the day before my spouse, and she doesn't remember life under Ronald Reagan, despite growing up just a suburb or two away from me.
So there it is, nice and clean and distinct, the way things should be. No room for error or ambiguity. Doesn't matter that there are people older than me who are enthusiastic and open about their love of games or Star Trek. Doesn't matter that there are people younger than me who are absolutely invested in the sort of values and concerns that I might say are quintessential for people born in 1955. These are outliers who should get in line with their birthdates.
It's like astrological sign, except this isn't arbitrary. No, this is a string of numbers that the doctor writes down as a rough approximation of the time you were pulled out of your mother. I mean, they might fudge it by a couple minutes, but what's important is that they have a doctorate and you should mind your place.
Perhaps this got a bit away from the initial discussion. So let's tie things back for the summary.
When you were born determines absolutely the way you should think and feel and act. Star Trek is amazing no matter when you were born (though you should pick your favorite based on what was airing when you were roughly 10). Everything's better louder, faster and with more distortion, and probably with one less dimension. Except maybe Joust.
And most importantly, groups of humans that you haven't met should comport themselves as cohesive wholes with simple motivations that do not change. Nobody's allowed to learn, disagree, or feel at all complicated about anything ever, especially not without consulting me first.
I mean, imagine how great it would be if all gamers acted the same way about everything all the time: the academic and the screaming teen, the games journalist and the bro, the activist and the troll, the artist and the casual mobile player. Obviously this would all be much simpler if we were homogenous, so let's collapse those unnecessary dimensions and make this all a lot simpler for the people we don't know who nonetheless will continue judging us across the internet.