Thursday, January 17, 2008

Models (2)

The great thing about models is that you can make them into whatever you want. They're a source of information, a stepping-off point, and no more. But we always want to be remaking those models to suit our own ends and our own vision.

On the one hand, we face the danger of cheap imitation; our work is too obviously no more than
an attempt to copy someone else's work. Such works are too often seen as no more than the product of someone crass and pragmatic trying to capture the magic that served another person. I say "too often" because often, I think, the failure is one of talent or effort or both, not simply an attempt to cash in on the efforts of another.

On the other hand, we face the problem of attempting to use a model that isn't suited to our project. Whatever we choose as a model, it was written for different ends and different motivations than our own. If we're not careful, we end up writing a project that does not satisfy our vision because we have focused on the model too closely, and not enough on our own inner vision of the project.

So models are great, but should be used with care.

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