For a While, Mechanical Controls Started
Now They Coexist with Other Interfaces
Mechanical Controls Are Used to Evoke Moods
Mechanical Controls: Will We Come Full
Science fiction is always rooted in the present, and it
almost always reflects contemporary paradigms. This phenomenon is no more apparent than when looking
at the common mechanical controls used to interact with devices—mechanical interfaces. As
we’ll see, buttons, knobs, and switches have been a mainstay of interface controls, both in
reality and in sci-fi, since the early days of sci-fi, and they still show up in interfaces today,
despite the sophisticated mechanical and virtual controls now available. Partly this is due to
history and legacy: digital controls, such as touch screens, require sophisticated technology that
only recently has become available. But mostly it’s due to the fact that our hands are facile,
and tactile and mechanical controls make fine use of these aspects of our fingers and bodies. (Our
feet can control pedals, too, when our hands are busy, but we don’t see a lot of this in
sci-fi.) Let’s head back to the beginning and see what role these mechanical controls were
playing in 1902.
Narcissism refers to the panoply of fantasies of perfection that are a ubiquitous aspect of the creative activities of the mind. This chapter describes some relationships between fantasies of perfection and the calamities of childhood. The defensive function of fantasies of perfection in reducing the unpleasure, anxiety, and depressive affect that characterizes the calamities of childhood is stressed. From this perspective, a fantasy of perfection is a defensive component of a compromise formation. However, because these fantasies, like all fantasies, are best understood as compromise formations in every case, one finds an interaction of drive derivatives, unpleasurable affects, defence, and superego elements. In addition, analysis of a fantasy of perfection typically reveals a series of related fantasies composed of many different wishes, many fears and miseries, many defences, and many superego manifestations in the underlying conflict(s).
In pursuing the goal of this chapter, narcissism is further redefined within an evolving Freudian model of psychic conflict. My purpose in writing The Narcissistic Pursuit of Perfection (1980) was to redefine narcissism following Hartmann’s (1950) suggestion that the concept narcissism “had not been explicitly redefined in termsof Freud’s later structural psychology”. The book is in the “evolutionary” tradition Hartmann exemplified (see Rothstein, 1983, pp. 9–28) for an elaboration of the conception of “evolutionary” vs. “revolutionary” process in the development of science in general and psychoanalysis in particular).
In this chapter I talk about some of the things that can make email much slower than it needs to be when using desktop clients such as Apple Mail and Microsoft Outlook, and how to address those issues. But be sure also to read the next chapter,
Speed Up Your Network
, which covers general network issues that could also have an effect on your email.
If you depend heavily on the timely receipt of email, you may have setyour email client to check your IMAP or POP account as frequently aspossiblesay, once per minute. Paradoxically, such frequent checks can slow down your email client, in some cases
the amount of time it takes to receive new messages.
The reason is that each check takes time; the more accounts you have, and the more messages in each one, the greater that time is. If a single check takes longer than the interval youve designated between checks, the result is that your client is perpetually checking for messages. Depending on how your client is designed, this may mean that a series of checks are queued up such that checking your first account may have to wait until your client is finished checking several other, slower accounts; or it could mean that multiple checks are happening in parallel, which can slow down all of them.
Channels are the second major innovation of java.nio. They are not an extension or enhancement, but a new, first-class Java I/O paradigm. They provide direct connections to I/O services. A Channel is a conduit that transports data efficiently between byte buffers and the entity on the other end of the channel (usually a file or socket).
A good metaphor for a channel is a pneumatic tube, the type used at drive-up bankteller windows. Your paycheck would be the information you’re sending. The carrier would be like a buffer. You fill the buffer (place your paycheck in the carrier),
“write” the buffer to the channel (drop the carrier into the tube), and the payload is carried to the I/O service (bank teller) on the other end of the channel.
The response would be the teller filling the buffer (placing your receipt in the carrier) and starting a channel transfer in the opposite direction (dropping the carrier back into the tube). The carrier arrives on your end of the channel (a filled buffer is ready for you to examine). You then flip the buffer (open the lid) and drain it