A great young group of bright minds

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A great young group of bright minds

Please see the following site for more information.


ebodyknows ebodyknows's picture

why such eccentric font sizes and leading?  Makes it stand out but also makes it difficult to read.

But more importantly does anyone happen to the origin of the phrase 'think tank'? It sounds very dangerous to me, all I can think about are all these minds about to undergo combustion and through the inevitable burst of flames some strange machine gets propelled a little further through space.

Maysie Maysie's picture

Hi blanc.

Is "the think tank that has yet to be named" like "the artist formerly known as Prince"?

Aside from an update in February of this year, your site has been dormant since April 2009. Your membership criteria seem a bit on the sketchy side (and I'm being kind), and the fonts make the pages virtually unreadable.

And, um, these names of directors? Seriously?


Director of the Dept. for the Investigation of Cross-Pollination (DICP)
Director of the Dept. for the Investigation of Failure (DIF)
Director of the Dept. for the Investigation of Tactical Education (DITE)


blanc, while you haven't done anything bannable, I will venture a guess that babble is not the place for you. Whaddaya think?



Im a new member here. This site is not mine, it's the site of people having a great time thinking togheter and it shows in their names of directorship. This is about art and activism so it cannot be other than creative.  I like their site's look personnaly.

If you have comments about their site or directorship name try adressing it to them and let me know. lol 

Isn't it great that they do publicly held private meetings ! This can sure make civic life more exciting.

I realy think they have things to say worth the attention of many and it is why I've place the link on this site. This groups work can be found in the readers and in the readers are serious texts.

Why would this post not be fine for this site ? This may not be news but surely people who will read this will have cognitive events to talk about and I realy would love it if people would like to discuss what they read here in these babble forums somewhere else if not right here.

I admit I'm surprised to hear your guess.

I'm only getting used to the categories of babble and It might not be in the right place according to your judgement so feel free to let me know ''where'' more appropriately it should go in this site. Young and old can appreciate it I'm sure.


When I saw the thread title of course I thought someone was talking about babble.  Dept for the Investigation of Failure.  Sounds intriguing.  Rabble staff often have publicly held private meetings.  Lately we've been using The Old Nick, out on The Danforth.


The font and layout though,....whoa.

Snert Snert's picture



I've always understood a think tank as such.  Certain idea develop best in insolation.  Often if we take the idea out of the tank it can't integrate with society and will typically end up dead or maimed.  This isn't to say that think tanks are bad things but it may be best to leave their ideas in the tank where we can look at them and admire how elegant they are.

ebodyknows ebodyknows's picture

The reference to TAZ indicates to me it's probably not out of place here....at least not at the here my noobness conceives/wishes the here to be or I wouldn't have responded at all.

Director of the Dept. for the Investigation of Cross-Pollination is at least at metaphor I can understand, I can't understand what a tank for thinking is meant to imply though?  We blow things up with the power of our thoughts?

Maysie Maysie's picture

Snert wrote:




ebodyknows ebodyknows's picture

p-sto wrote:
Certain idea develop best in insolation.  Often if we take the idea out of the tank it can't integrate with society and will typically end up dead or maimed.  This isn't to say that think tanks are bad things but it may be best to leave their ideas in the tank where we can look at them and admire how elegant they are.


isolation...and here they are talking so much about community, 'Spontaneous Public Critical Conversation' and cross pollinisation, if nothing else you got to admire anyone who can be so funny and sincere at the same time....besides, even though the leading on the page is absurd I think we're really giving them a hard time just because we are a little too posessive of our colour scheme here on rabble.  Come on people, there is enough red, white and black for everybody!


My comment wasn't really directed at the content of the website.  It was more a play off of the term think tank invoking an image of isolation.

ebodyknows ebodyknows's picture

Oh, I think you were pretty clear that your comment was discussing the term think tank in general.  It just got my thinking directed at the contradictions at play on that website.


I agree the think tank that has yet to be named certainly gives an impression of community and action.  However, everything from their name to the font to the brief and vague write ups there seems to be a strong desire to esoteric.  Seems to play in rather well with viewing them as isolationist.

Maysie Maysie's picture

Interesting, p-sto, I didn't get either community or action from the website. And I don't care about colour schemes, I care about readability.

I found no accessible information on where they are based, contact information in different locations if there are other locations aside from the cyber-world. Community can happen online of course, as can activism, but action starts to get a bit tenuous at that point. Hell, I joined "Can this Onion Ring Get more Fans than Stephen Harper?" on Facebook, but I have no illusion that such a decision on my part has anything to do with activism.


My opinion was based on quotes such as this based on various parts of the website.

We believe that to better understand how community is defined - that is, created, delineated, cohered, dissolved, complicated, contested, infiltrated, invaded, and generally transformed - will prove instructive for guiding our - artists' and activists' - capacity for collaborating with diverse groups of people in the struggles for social, spatial, and economic justice.

In 1980, Jackson Gregory and Joan Wye of the Belfast Bay Tile Works worked with children aged 5 to 13 at Somerville's Powderhouse Community School to create 253 tiles that were later installed in the Davis Square subway stop. These tiles, part of the Arts on the Line program that placed art in and around MBTA rapid transit stations, present a unique opportunity to look back at how Somerville has changed since the opening of the Red Line extension in 1984.

This "Distributed and Participatory Public Investigation" project will collect the personal histories of the people who created the Davis Square tiles, to be published on the web and possibly in other formats. We are asking volunteers to help us by finding and interviewing one tile-maker. A set of questions is included below - in your interviews, please collect as much of this information as possible. If you are able to contact the artist and they would rather not participate in this project, please let us know so that we can take them off our list.

Unless I've misunderstood the entries these people seem to be active doing something, but I find the format of the website and nature of the entries somewhat difficult to follow.

ebodyknows ebodyknows's picture

I'm an artist, colour schemes are important!

There are a few references to chicago scattered throughout the site.  This guy is in Philadelphia and he talks about an art gallery in montréal on this other sub-domain which is much more conventional in it's organization.

in our work as community organizers and activists, we were often subjected to and participating in various labyrinthine bureaucratic structures that make up the governmental and non-governmental agencies in the local political sphere. This immersion affected us greatly and provoked us to play with similar structures.

How does one get out of an overly bureaucratic isolating labyrinth?


Ebodyknows, I think you could contact the directors if you want to ask that question yourself. Here is an email. [email protected]

I've not read everything in there so I cannot say much to your question other than suggesting that you investigate such methods as open space tech and about your last question, I think the presencing method can also help.

http://www.presencing.com/ There is a social media community space somewhere on this site where lots of engaged smart people discuss in forums if you are interested.

And I've taken this course in generative dialogue facilitation so if anyone want's I'd be realy happy to help in this regard because it is essential to get rid of old disfunctionnal structures. This method is all about blinds spots and helps understand the way to work in co-creative manner at the cross road of politics, civil society and business in initiatives to lead profound societal change outside institutions. I recommand reading Theory U.

I'm happy to see the discution  threat has started to take a content oriented direction with the latest quotes. This is where it needs to go.

Lard Tunderin Jeezus Lard Tunderin Jeezus's picture

Think tank?

Is that like a tank made of thought-balloons?

thought balloon tank


That is so funny !!!