Weeknotes 11

Some News

I got back from doing the New Dawn talk in the Netherlands at the weekend. had a good time and was turned on to the work of John Paul Flintoff who sometimes works with the School of Life. If you can, I'd highly recommend checking it out. 

Secondly, I'm going to be teaching a summer school in Split, Croatia on the networked city at the end of August. I think they've got all the applicants in but you can get a feel of it here.


Following a freedom of information request regarding the US governments policy on intercepting text messages, the American Civil Liberties Union received a 100% redacted document from the government. They wryly point out how this stands with Obama's claim of having an "unprecedented level of openness in government" from the "most transparent administration in history."

The Song of IBM

My father worked for IBM most of his life and so I was amused to come across this un-sinister hymn book while filling in time doing something or other. IBM is one of the few tech companies that I can kind of see as 'clean.' They don't seem to have designs on taking over the world at the moment, though this may be informed by paternal bias. 

Larry Page

Larry Page is definitely sinister. At a very rare press conference he recently said that he'd like to essentially live in Ayn Rand's libertarian utopia and perform experiment on children. He didn't say that but he might as well of. He wants a lawless zone where Google can be free to flex their muscles.

I've passed comment a few times about the slide of Google form the future of democratised humanity, freeing ourselves and giving us a new corporate face to turning into one of the most sinister entities in existence. They're at a stage where you just feel them hunkering down like a malignant beast testing the boundaries and finding them to be very thin.

 Start The Week...

Further sticking with the Google theme, Honor Harger of Lighthouse fame went toe to toe with Eric Schmidt on Radio 4's start the week. It's a good listen with some memorable soundbites that were resonating around twitter for a few days after.

Disposition Matrix

Even more sinisterism from James Bridle's flickr stream with an image of the Disposition Matrix literally laid out.The Disposition Matrix is the US's uber-kill list which also includes guidelines and frameworks on the assassination and rendition of enemies of the current administration.

The plan expanded the CIA to have it's own paramilitary force of drones it can operate in friendly territory without and clearance, gives permission to the use of 'enhanced interrogation.' A lot of the drivers for the matrix however are about offsetting responsibility. It's clouded through the use of drones as the weapons and then an obscure chain of command that makes it hard to decipher who exactly is in charge of what and where the gilt for sort of semi-legally murdering people without trial should go.


Also, do check out James Bridle talking about his work at Lighthouse with his new piece Under The Shadow of The Drone just finished. He has some really interesting reflections on the Disposition Matrix too.