dark side of casemodding

Millenium Falcon casemodBy squishing a computer into a vintage-model of Han Solo’s Millenium Falcon casemodder Russ Caslis made the Star-Wars-nerd’s heart jump high and right out of the galaxy. Alienware just seems to have achieved the opposite, according to boingboing: “Alienware has licensed the right to create an official Star Wars PC from Lucas, and then squandered the opportunity by shipping a pair of stock PCs distinguished only by cheesy van-art airbrush murals on their sides.”

A perfect example of casemodding becoming “‘ethnokitsch,’ commercially designed and profitably mass produced.” (Mitchell 1992: 174) Kitty, one of Michael Kitchenman’s informants has voiced that, too. In other words, but quite to the point: “In my opinion, the modding community is becoming more and more divided. There are those who are happy with all having the same mods as the other 95% of the group. To me, they are no better than those who are content with plain beige boxes. In fact, I see them as being worse. I call people like that “clusterfucks” – people who think they are being different, when in fact their work is no different from other modders.” (Kitchenman 2001: 3) This decidedly emic comment goes perfectly well with the definition of modding Russ gives at his site XKILL—mods:

What is a modder? Well, it’s someone who enjoys modding. To be a modder, you have to posses many different skills. You must be a technically oriented, artistic, don’t believe in warranties, and a little crazy.

But what is modding? The answer to that is different to every single person who’s involved with the hobby. In short, modding is modifying something, in this case computers and computer cases, to go beyond what they were originally. Modding can take the form of a functional mod, such as adding additional fans to cool your case better. Modding can also take an artistic form such as painting your case or some other aesthetic mod. A great mod incorporates both types.

via entry at boingboing

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