Inside the spreadsheet - the real time travel
Version 1.1. of this blog post, rewritten at the suggestion of someone who keeps pushing me to write and knows a thing or two about good prose.
Spreadsheets must have been around since Egyptian scribes started organising the pharaohs' worldly possessions. I somehow feel they inspired just as much awe to Upper Nile's neophytes as they do to today's untrained users of such tables.
They certainly throw me into a very deep hole of despair. The more I look, the faster all those numbers in their tiny cages are whirling before my eyes.
I never thought there was a name for it, but hey, there is one: dyscalculia. The weird thing is that mental arithmetic is piece of cake, but working with a spreadsheet just makes me nauseous.
It's not a joke. I was so thrilled to discover that there is no such thing as ruining a spreadsheet forever and ever. There is always a way of going back one or two or three steps and start all over again moving the little number monsters around.
I thought, would it not be wonderful to have this kind of time travel in real life too? Then I wrote Version 1.0. That's all.
Would it not be great to live inside a spreadsheet
and be able to go back several versions, after messing up the current one?
This is actual time travel, better than any Matrix or Black Mirror.
It is true that it's almost a Dada situation.
How to make a poem, by Tristan Tzara, one of the founding fathers of Dadaism, is a starting point.
Read the poem and more at Dada at the MOMA