Links for 20th February 2009

Fresh from the clogged tubes of teh intarwubs…

  1. The Unabomber Was Right

    "The technium is not, as most people think, a series of individual artifacts and gadgets for sale. Rather, Kaczynski, speaking as the Unabomber, argued that technology is a dynamic holistic system. It is not mere hardware; rather it is more akin to an organism. It is not inert, nor passive; rather the technium seeks and grabs resources for its own expansion. It is not merely the sum of human action, but in fact it transcends human actions and desires. I think Kaczynski was right about these claims." OK, now I wished I'd researched the Unabomber before. Damn. Very interesting.

    Tagged with: technologyculturesocietyphilosophyfreedomanarchismunabomber

  2. Black hat, blank face: researchers crack biometric scanners

    "The researchers were able to bypass Lenovo's Veriface III, Asus' SmartLogon V1.0.0005, and Toshiba's Face Recognition, even with each program set for maximum security." Everything can and will be hacked.

    Tagged with: securitybiometricscannerlaptophackingECAWBH

  3. Top MI6 spy: Terrorism less serious than bird flu

    ""Efforts to establish a global repository of counterterrorist information are unlikely ever to succeed. We need to be wary of rebuilding our world to deal with just one problem, one which might not be by any means the most serious we face." Asked what dangers were more serious than terrorism, Mr Inkster suggested that British government planners were more concerned regarding the possible results of global pandemics, or perhaps the worst-case outcomes of climate change." Gee, d'ya think?

    Tagged with: uksecurityintelligenceterrorismpolicyperspectivepoliticsrhetoric

  4. Why E-Books Cost Money to Publish

    "We still pay for the author advance, the editing, the copyediting, the proofreading, the cover and interior design, the illustrations, the sales kit, the marketing efforts, the publicity, and the staff that needs to coordinate all of the details that make books possible in these stages. The costs are primarily in these previous stages; the difference between physical and electronic production is minimal. In fact, the paper/printing/binding of most books costs about $2.00…" Well, it's high time to trim the fat and gristle out of that business model, isn't it? No wonder they're struggling to stay afloat!

    Tagged with: bookspublishingebookspricingcostingHarperCollins

  5. Lubing the Edges of the Internet

    "There is a place at the edges of the internet where the level of friction makes content and data grind to a halt. It's largely unregulated. And it just got seriously lubed."

    Tagged with: phonechargerusbstandardsconnectivitysociologyusabilityinternetculture

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