From Angie’s blog:
Back in the day it was called “magic” by captivated audiences, these reproductions of reality, these “ optical illusions.” But I believe that the magic was not so much in the product, but in the magical moment when minds actually had the leisure, inspiration, desire to come together for a project. It seems to me, now that I live in a university town surrounded by academics, there is very little time to “play” to attempt and then fail, involving our research without some economic and professional consequences or delays. The professionalism of academia seems to be working against its own potential of doing something extraordinary because from what I understand my colleagues in the sciences, humanities, etc.. have very little free-play time. The essential development time that is allotted to babies and children at schools, where they socialize, follow their own curiosities and just play. And this “interdisciplinary free play” that aristocrats and the well-to do had back in the day was essential to plant the intellectual,artistic, scientific seeds of something that continues to impact our lives in monumental ways. Maybe now that the economic has had a shake down, there will be more time to play, something new will be invented? Or there will be a slowing down on individual professional growth and some (individuals and institutions) will begin thinking on collective growth?