December 04, 2016

Evgeny Morozov

Data populists must seize our information – for the benefit of us all | Evgeny Morozov

Five US tech giants have harvested our data. This treasure must be shared among the people who provide it

Of all the big firms in Silicon Valley, Amazon had the most to lose from Donald Trump’s presidency. And lose it did, albeit briefly, its share price dropping 5% shortly after the election.

During the campaign, Trump warned that Amazon had a “huge antitrust problem” – a reasonable stance for the populist that he once aspired to be. Most likely, though, his animosity had more to do with the fact Amazon’s founder, Jeff Bezos, also owns the Washington Post, an influential newspaper that took an early strong dislike of Trump. By the time of Amazon’s massive cloud-computing conference, which kicked off in Las Vegas at the end of November, such squabbles seem to have been forgotten. Amazon went on to wow the audience with impressive gimmicks. Did you know it has a truck – yes, a real truck – to drive your data to the cloud? Apparently, it’s much faster than using networks.

Related: Click here for the AI apocalypse (brought to you by Facebook) | Robert Smith

Related: Amazon v Donald Trump? Jeff Bezos may soon face his biggest challenge yet

Related: A Prehistory of the Cloud by Tung-Hui Hu review – the reality behind virtual storage

Continue reading...

by Evgeny Morozov

December 03, 2016

Informatic school is in southwest Cameroon

Football materials donated by Informatic for Africa July 2013

Linux friends is very happy to say that not only the curriculum of our

School but also our football section develops very well.

footbal8 footbal9

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Much thanks to Informatic for Africa for the support of Jersey.

by admin

December 02, 2016

videogame confessional forum

ben dutka

Okay. My name is Ben Dutka, and I am 36 years old. I've been playing from the moment my uncle brought over the Atari 2600 with Pong. I was sort of fascinated, even though I didn't play a huge amount...

by david wolinsky

December 01, 2016

Vlax

Hackmitin 2016 en Colima

Hackmitin 2016 en Colima

http://hackmitin.espora.org

Hackmitin es un encuentro anual de personas que trabajan la tecnología desde una visión libre y comunitaria. Un fin de semana abierto al público con charlas y talleres gratuitos, dedicado a las tecnologías libres y a experimentar modelos alternativos de trabajo y cooperación.

El encuentro está destinado a todo tipo de personas que tengan una mente abierta y curiosa, con ganas de compartir sus experiencias y participar. Algunas charlas y talleres pueden requerir conocimientos informáticos avanzados pero no todos.

El Hackmitin se ha realizado desde el 2009 en distintas partes del país y desde diferentes espacios autogestivos. En todos los encuentros se han generado experiencias únicas de aprendizaje y colaboración.

Este año Colima Hacklab será el anfitrión del encuentro, que se llevará a cabo del 9 al 11 de diciembre. La organización del evento se da a través de plataformas colaborativas, donde todas las personas interesadas pueden participar desde distintas partes del país.

¿Te interesa participar? Comparte tus inquietudes o propón un taller: http://hackmitin.espora.org

#autonomia #softwarelibre #colima #mexico #hack #autogestion #culturalibre #organizacion #hacklab

#Dystopia or how the very long-term future of humanity is relativel...

#Dystopia or how the very long-term future of humanity is relatively easy to predict

via - The Doomsday Invention - at The New Yorker

  • (...)Philosopher Nick Bostrom, who holds an appointment at Oxford, is the author of “Superintelligence: Paths, Dangers, Strategies,” it argues that true artificial intelligence, if it is realized, might pose a danger that exceeds every previous threat from technology—even nuclear weapons—and that if its development is not managed carefully humanity risks engineering its own extinction.

#think #behaviour #world #humanity #Artificial #Intelligence #cyber #power #system

http://www.newyorker.com/magazine/2015/11/23/doomsday-invention-artificial-intelligence-nick-bostrom

Alan :: law, technology and cinema, washed down with wine

The Machinic Sewer

The Sewer
I recently visited the Wikipedia page of a left wing German politician. She had been hit with a pie by a critic of her views on migration. Wikipedia linked to a report on Russia Today containing a video of the incident uploaded to Youtube by RT’s European unit, Ruptly. At the Youtube URL most of the videos displayed in the related content sidebar were about migration, few were from Ruptly, and many were strongly anti-immigrant. I clicked on one where an old woman was interviewed about her fears, feelings and hostility towards immigrants and closed the video after a couple of minutes. The next time that I opened Youtube seven of the ten videos recommended to me concerned immigration. Five of them were clearly produced by right wing media activists and this flavour of curation extended to the videos on the right hand column as I browsed.

This experience captures what Eli Pariser characterised as a ‘filter bubble’ in a book of the same name: I was suddenly thrust into of a media universe imagined for me on the basis of one or two clicked links, and it felt weird. Encountering world-views contrary to my own doesn’t bother me – in fact I enjoy the conflict, but the skimpy basis for subjecting me to this flood of ideological personalisation is bothersome. If the viewer is uninterested in politics and has no knowledge of the mechanism selecting the stories presented to them, what are they to make of such goings on? In this universe old ladies, innocent blond haired teenagers, and middle-aged men are at one in insisting that migrants are criminals who should be deported – is that the normcore position? Sure viewers aren’t going to swallow propaganda whole, they’ll cross reference it with their own experience and knowledge, and apply some critical thinking. But the persistence of these recommendations for about week did make me feel like as if I was surrounded. I had fallen into the filter sewer and was being sprayed with a fire-hose of horseshit.

Getting Personal
Google would argue that if I logged in to Youtube they would know more about me so I would not have ended up in the sewer. But I don’t want my media consumption tracked or personalised. Never logging in to Google is the best I can do to minimise the tracking, short of systematically using a VPN or Tor, and because I want to have some idea of what the general experience of the web is, I will not do that. I do use anti-tracking tools such as Privacy Badger, Disconnect and uBlock Origin, but none of them can fully protect you from ‘the Google’.

Of course our media environments have always had their ‘bias’, and that was the case before the internet. Journalists wax about objectivity and balance but there have always been ideological assumptions and frameworks: the basic credibility of government statements and explanations of its actions; the virtues of capitalism and liberal democracy etc – the world inside the Overton window. Because Pariser wrote the book in the internet era, and focused on the results of algorithmic filtering, it was understood (perhaps unfairly?) as arguing that the problem was new, when it was actually an evolved iteration of an older phenomenon. [It reminds me of the fear that adblocking will wreck journalism – yet newspapers were in crisis already in the 1990s as the industry became more concentrated and the new owners expanded advertising sales whilst sacking journalists, a phenomenon chronicled by Ben Bagdikian in his classic, the New Media Monopoly.]

Old media was also driven by advertising logic: demographic targeting etc but the difference lies as much in the ease of of individualised distribution as in the availability of algorithmic engines. In the newspaper age you could tell a lot about a person politically and socially from the newspaper they read, their choice was also a filter, and the advertisers who bought slots chose silos for their campaigns. But the paper still had to appeal to a mass market so the silo was big, somewhat diversified and had to cover a range of subjects. Not so today.

Futures Past
Pariser’s book is actually about personalization but he must have thought filter bubble was a catchier term. Individualized customization of information flows is heralded as the compass to navigate a sea of excess information, but this has mostly meant that users should surrender control to machinic decision making whose logic is opaque. If the past once allowed room for the illusion that this could work out well, the future is now over and we’ve seen it’s not so rosy. Information filters are needed but only as tools under the control of the user. But such user sovereignty is not a tendency the economic forces of the web want to foster. In the web of 2016 the user is object of a system designed to shape them rather than a subject to be supported in their own self-development.

In The Daily You, Joseph Turrow outlined how the the idea of the powerful consumer is promoted whilst advertisers and marketers engage in ever more intrusive information gathering processes which lead to the separation of consumers into targets and ‘waste’. And if the consumer is so potent, surely they don’t need to be protected by regulation? In the adtech world that the real end goal of personalization is revealed: collect every last bit of data so as to eventually facilitate the encounter between consumer desire and business operation. This intrusion is presented as a means of giving you ‘what you want’ and clothed in the innocuous language of ’relevance’. But the user is never asked what they want, nor given the means to control the data and advertising flows around them – the answers are to be found by spying on them.

All Our Yesterdays…
In its early days the web was embraced by media critics as a formal remedy to the ills of the mass media – newspapers, television, radio, and film. The net/web was to undermine the tyranny of intermediaries and enable a direct dialogue between individuals and groups. It was not to be. The human decision-makers have had their wings clipped, but have merely been replaced by tech-moguls (unwilling to acknowledge their editorial power) and opaque machinic processes cast as agents of divine right.

If algorithms are the new monarchs, a renewed republicanism needs to dethrone them and their owners. Users do need tools to master the data flow, but they must be under their control, transparent in their logic and designed to nurture their autonomy.


by nonrival

November 30, 2016

In the news

Madeira-ITI tem novo projecto I&D para de combate à pobreza - DNoticias


DNoticias

Madeira-ITI tem novo projecto I&D para de combate à pobreza
DNoticias
A equipa inclui: a Abertay University (Reino Unido), o Basic Income Network Italy (Itália), o Centre for Peace Studies (Croácia), CREATE-NET (Itália), Dyne.org (Holanda), Madeira Interactive Technologies Institute (Portugal), Museu da Crise (Holanda) a ...

November 29, 2016

Informatic school is in southwest Cameroon

Students of Linux Friends are absent from school 21-11-2016

On Monday the 21st of November 2016 

there have be strike because of the Anglophone problem, as a result students can not go to school, meanwhile students of Linux Friends will be starting their exams on the 5th of December, beside a Christmas Party will be on the 14th of December 2016.

 

 

 

 

by admin

November 28, 2016

Informatic school is in southwest Cameroon

Linux Friends and Future Stars Academy.

The Association of Linux Friends  together with Eboumbou Jacques Marcel

is running a football club called Future Stars Sports Academy.

In Future Stars Sports Academy we have all categories of players,

that is the Poussins, Benjamins, Minims and Cadets. We also have a second division team,  we have training every day from Mondays to Fridays and from 4:00 pm to 6:00 pm. Saturday is a day we go out for competitions with other football club, in Buea, Kumba, Tiko, Douala, Bamenda or Yaounde. Football tournament is a key way to build trust and hope in a traumatised region. Note we also have female tournaments. We like to say a very big thank you to Techshare Switzerland for supporting us all this years with football materials.

boysgirls1 IMG-20161124-WA0000 IMG-20161124-WA0003 IMG-20161124-WA0004 IMG-20161124-WA0005 IMG-20161124-WA0006 IMG-20161124-WA0009 IMG_20161126_104458 IMG_20161126_104606 IMG_20161126_104613 IMG_20161126_104632 IMG_20161126_104634 IMG_20161126_104638 IMG_20161126_104733 IMG_20161126_104740 IMG_20161126_104811 IMG_20161126_104815 IMG_20161126_104853 IMG_20161126_104908 IMG_20161126_104916 IMG_20161126_104921 IMG_20161126_104926 IMG_20161126_104929 IMG_20161126_104940 IMG_20161126_105012 IMG_20161126_105016 IMG_20161126_105020 IMG_20161126_105022 IMG_20161126_114302 IMG_20161126_114307 IMG_20161126_114321 IMG_20161126_114506 IMG_20161126_114522 IMG_20161126_114525 IMG_20161126_114540 IMG_20161126_114629 IMG_20161126_122604 IMG_20161126_122605IMG_20161115_165307 IMG_20161115_165309 IMG_20161115_165332

by admin

Data Knightmare

DataKnightmare Ep8

Siamo immersi nei dati, che male c'è a usarli? Tanto male, specie se usi i dati per dire qualcosa che non c'entra con loro. Come per esempio quando usi i post di Facebook per valutare il rischio creditizio, o usi i gusti musicali come indicatori comportamentali. Oggi gli algoritmi non hanno contrappesi: se sbagliano ci rimette solo chi ne subisce le decisioni sbagliate. DataKnightmare spiega perché troppa leggerezza quando si lavora con i dati è come sparare a canne mozze in piazza sperando di beccare qualche cattivo, sapendo che comunque conta solo quante persone colpisci.

by Runtime Radio

November 27, 2016

Vlax

Fidel His enemies say he was an uncrowned king who confused unity w...

Fidel

His enemies say he was an uncrowned king who confused unity with unanimity.

And in that his enemies are right.

His enemies say that if Napoleon had a newspaper like Granma, no Frenchman would have learned of the disaster at Waterloo.

And in that his enemies are right.

His enemies say that he exercised power by talking a lot and listening little, because he was more used to hearing echoes than voices.

And in that his enemies are right.

But some things his enemies do not say: it was not to pose for the history books that he bared his breast to the invaders' bullets,

he faced hurricanes as an equal, hurricane to hurricane,

he survived 637 attempts on his life,

his contagious energy was decisive in making a country out of a colony,

and it was not by Lucifer's curse or God's miracle that the new country managed to outlive 10 US presidents, their napkins spread in their laps, ready to eat it with knife and fork.

And his enemies never mention that Cuba is one rare country that does not compete for the World Doormat Cup.

And they do not say that the revolution, punished for the crime of dignity, is what it managed to be and not what it wished to become. Nor do they say that the wall separating desire from reality grew ever higher and wider thanks to the imperial blockade, which suffocated a Cuban-style democracy, militarized society, and gave the bureaucracy, always ready with a problem for every solution, the alibis it needed to justify and perpetuate itself.

And they do not say that in spite of all the sorrow, in spite of the external aggression and the internal high-handedness, this distressed and obstinate island has spawned the least unjust society in Latin America.

And his enemies do not say that this feat was the outcome of the sacrifice of its people, and also of the stubborn will and old-fashioned sense of honor of the knight who always fought on the side of the losers, like his famous colleague in the fields of Castile.

#eduardo #galeano - #mirors - #fidel

http://www.motherjones.com/media/2014/08/stalin-castro-excerpt-eduardo-galeano-mirrors

November 26, 2016

Migrant 2 Migrant radio

Report on the General Meeting of We Are Here

 

On a stormy Sunday evening some 50 people came together in MKZ. Together they shared their concern for the future of We Are Here.

Refugees and supporters explained why they came to this meeting. In one word: for unity.

We discovered that the most pressing issues are the lack of organization of the refugees and the communication with the supporters. The way forward is to launch concrete action to get stable shelter and to reach our common ideal: normal life for all.

we-are-here-in-general-meeting-coor

The post Report on the General Meeting of We Are Here appeared first on M2M Radio.

by jo and sakkho (info@m2m.streamtime.org)

November 25, 2016

videogame confessional forum

josh druckerman // evan white

Evan White: Uh, yes. This is Evan -- you can refer to me as Evan or Evan J. White. Partner with White Harris PLLC. I have a background involving labor unions based on my first job out of law school,...

by david wolinsky

November 22, 2016

Vlax

"HyperNormalisation", Adam Curtis (2016)

"HyperNormalisation", Adam Curtis (2016)

We live in a time of great uncertainty and confusion. Events keep happening that seem inexplicable and out of control. Donald Trump, Brexit, the War in Syria, the endless migrant crisis, random bomb attacks. And those who are supposed to be in power are paralysed - they have no idea what to do.

This film by Adam Curtis is the epic story of how we got to this strange place. It explains not only why these chaotic events are happening - but also why we, and our politicians, cannot understand them.

It shows that what has happened is that all of us in the West - not just the politicians and the journalists and the experts, but we ourselves - have retreated into a simplified, and often completely fake version of the world. But because it is all around us we accept it as normal.

http://www.filmsforaction.org/watch/hypernormalisation-2016/

November 21, 2016

Data Knightmare

DataKnightmare Ep 7

A diversi giorni di distanza dalla conclusione delle elezioni USA l'unica certezza è che le previsioni politiche hanno fallito e non resta che cercare un responsabilie: i bigdata? gli algoritmi? i social?

by Runtime Radio

November 18, 2016

videogame confessional forum

neil druckmann

Sure. My name is Neil Druckmann and I am the creative director at Naughty Dog. I'm also a writer. I live and work out of Santa Monica. Naughty Dog is located in Santa Monica. I guess my whole life...

by david wolinsky

Informatic school is in southwest Cameroon

Report About php Class with Bachmann Lucius

During the 6th week and still presence, the teacher teach the students how to install again the concrete5 theme by themselves.

The teacher ask  the students to  create a new theme using concrete5 cms and extend it to their concrete5 theme

Some students are more advance in the course than others and have already create a good website

But the teacher try to go with the slow learners still show them how they can install a concrete5 theme and startup a good project.

The teacher asked students to work in groups of two or three persons to come up with their different projects.

So far so good every body in class now have a deep sense of responsibility as far as the course is concern.

by admin

November 15, 2016

Pix and bits

For once, this saturday, we are hosting a concert! DOC. WALD & PROF. RAMA are coming to Amsterdam to play a marmelata of crazy geeky electro tribal sub beats for you! Expect to enter a parallel multiverse of fantasy and distorted reality build completely on Free Software. Beats made live on hacked Xbox controllers(!) and more. An interactive concert/performance/experience from our South American friends, full of dance, beatbox, VJ, the technological and the primitive, the mystical and the deformed. Leaving their laboratory squat in Buenos Aireas for their Europe tour, they passed Vienna, Barcelona and Berlin, to now join us in Amsterdam. The event is no-profit, but we’d like to pay our friends for their performance, so please when coming keep 5 or 10 EUR at hand and give them for entrance or look for the donation pot. @ Dyne HQ’s Haparandadam 7, Amsterdam

by jaromilrojo

Vlax

Llamado a la colaboración

Llamado a la colaboración

¡¡Te invitamos a participar en la post-televisión del Rancho Electrónico y el Laboratorio Popular de Medios Libres!!

Cómo colaborar – CoAA TV

Image/photo

¡¡Te invitamos a participar en la post-televisión del Rancho Electrónico y el Laboratorio Popular de Medios Libres!! Es una apuesta de post-televisión, un canal de televisión por internet que imagina-crea-construye-difunde relatos audiovisuales, otros, desde abajo y a la izquierda. CoAA-TV es un espacio abierto a las contribuciones de comunic...Image/photo

Informatic school is in southwest Cameroon

Wikitone Douala visit to Linux Friends Limbe

On Saturday the 12/11/2016 Wikotone of Douala visited the Association of Linux Friends Limbe to encourage the Youths around Limbe to contribute in the development of wikipedia and wikimedia.

OM6A8001 OM6A8003 OM6A8007OM6A7998

  • Wikiloveswomen
  • Qu’est ce que wikipédia?
  • Images
  • languages
  • travelling
  • books
  • animals

to say there is not only wikipedia, but there are other things to bring information, so we all have things to contribute. It is important to put images and informations on wikipedia, it is the greatest encycopedia in the world. It is created in 2001, the English version has 5000,000articles, the French version have only 1million articles, it has 2085 languages. But we do not have it in the local language in Cameroon. It is the most visited in the world, it is a place to be when you need information, or to be known. We need to create content in Africa, by African, most content are created by tourist.

Who can talk about your language, culture, eating habit, dressing style better than you.

African people need to know their realities, their culture, and many other.

Wikipedia is about the text, it has a brother project, it has so many projects, there are -wikisources in wikipedia.

  • we used wikipedia to search
  • to learn
  • one information = to one source
  • references and sources is very important for writing articles
  • structure your articles with sources of information, in your own words.
  • sources can come from websites, news papers, books, etc

Wikimedia commons la mediatheque libre, it exist since 2004, all pictures are put in wikimedia and intergrated.

Wikisource, la bibliotheque libre. It exit since 2003.

wikitionnaire, le dictionnaire multilingue et libre, give meaning of words, phonetics of words, all uses of words, translations of words in other languages

type www.wikipedia.org

create an account

search on top right hand

prepare something to add

by admin

November 11, 2016

videogame confessional forum

david gallaher

[Laughs.] So, to answer directly, I don't know if I play videogames. But, no, so, I'm David Gallaher. I'm the author of The Only Living Boy for Papercutz, High Moon for DC Comics, Green Lantern Corps...

by david wolinsky

November 08, 2016

Data Knightmare

DataKnightmare Ep.6

Oggi in DataKnightmare, Walter Vannini ci racconta di come una compagnia di assicurazioni ha deciso di fare sconti sulle polizze auto semplicemente analizzando il profilo Facebook di una persona. Continua il nostro viaggio nel lato oscuro della società dei dati.

by Runtime Radio

November 07, 2016

Data Knightmare

DataKnightmare Ep.5

Nuovo episodio del programma di Walter Vannini

by Runtime Radio

November 04, 2016

videogame confessional forum

ryan morrison

Sure, I am Ryan Morrison. I am 29 years old and I work out of New York, New York. I am a game attorney, one of a handful that practices as outside counsel. So, most of the major companies have...

by david wolinsky

November 01, 2016

Alan :: law, technology and cinema, washed down with wine

A Yahoo User’s Journey through the Unknown

“We fight any requests that we deem unclear, improper, overbroad, or unlawful,”

Ron Bell, Yahoo General Counsel

Oh Yahoo, what have you gone and done now. You strange company, whose services I have rarely had occasion to use, save for the occasional casual email account useful for keeping commercial spam away from my real address and the odd photo uploaded to flickr. And yet I cannot help but feel disappointed, because behind that Yahoo octopus whose ink barely obscures a huge advertising-surveillance system, I actually thought that there were individuals serious about defending their users’ privacy at least vis a vis the state. This belief was not without foundation: in September 2014 documents were released chronicling Yahoo’s fight at the FISA court against the NSA’s mass surveillance program. They were alone in this legal resistance. Google, who like to see and portray themselves as the user’s friend, never challenged the government in court.

I had this on my mind in the autumn of 2014, when I was getting increasingly fed up with Google search and looking for an alternative. This was driven by disgust at their relentless data harvesting and disregard for user privacy, but also by the sense that Google’s results seemed to be getting noisier, including a lot of trash and click-bait pages designed solely to exploit the modalities of the algorithm. I thus embarked on an exploration of the alternatives first Bing, then Yahoo…

This was, I know, an eccentric decision – Yahoo has if anything a worse policy regarding retention of search queries than Google. The results themselves were ok, and the key discovery that I made as I test drove the other engines is that 80% of our queries can be resolved by any of them. It is only when you are searching for an exact phrase or rarefied subject matter that the distinctions emerge. Basically Google spiders more of the web, has a better index, and has a better chance of unearthing the obscure. But I did enjoy the apostasy of using Yahoo, and bragging about it; I remember a dinner with a google engineer in SF who stared at me in amazement when I told him of my search engine heresy and explained my motivation (on that point, why are so many at Google in denial about the fact that it is an advertising company rather than a vocation to make the world better through engineering?).

Truth be told, however, this dalliance didn’t last long. After three months I had shifted again to DuckDuckGo, where I have stayed. There are wrinkles to this too: DDG buy search results from Yahoo, Bing and Yandex, which they then combine with other sources and reprocess. But DDG are sound on privacy: they never track users and they’ve adopted the EFF’s Do Not Track policy, a document close to my heart. I resort to Google only as needed, in pursuit of the esoteric and arcane, but what I thereby disclose offers such a marginal (and bizarre) view into my head and habits and I can live with that. Firefox has all the major engines in their search box, thus switching involves no overhead, and I run Opera in parallel.

So it was just a fling with Yahoo but enough to make me sick when I read that they had adapted  a child pornography and malware filter and repurposed it to search the entirety of the mail passing through the @yahoo.*** system. (Incidentally the journalist who broke the story, Joseph Menn, is the author of the excellent All the Rave, which tells the story of Shawn Fanning and Napster – most enjoyable). It made me think how maddening, how insanely inconsistent, Yahoo is. Corporate Beelzebubery comes as no surprise, it’s the wild shenanigans that get to me. That’s what I intended to write about, before the rant above took shape, so here are some examples which come to mind.

Search Query Retention Times


Back in 2007 the Article 29 Working Group, an entity which drafts opinions on data protection/privacy in the EU intended to guide the actions of the Data Protection Authorities, started to breath down the necks of the search companies about how long they were retaining user query data. At the time Yahoo held the data for 13 months, Microsoft 18 months, and Google started ‘making it less identifiable’ after 9. In December 2008, Yahoo announced that they were going to start de-identifying the data after 3 months. Bravo!

Then in April 2011, Yahoo announced that they were needed to retain the data whole for… eighteen months! Otherwise they couldn’t compete! By this point Google were saying that they wouldn’t go below eighteen months either, only Microsoft’s Bing had adopted 6 months.
Do Not Track

In March 2012 Yahoo announced that they would be implementing support for the Do Not Track signal that users can enable in their browsers to tell sites that they don’t want to be tracked. This is not a message which advertising companies are pleased to receive and they have wasted a lot of people’s time at the W3C and elsewhere trying to make the subject more complex than necessary, basically as a means of stalling and sabotaging. No details were ever provided about what this Yahoo implementation would consist of, the sceptical might wonder if it was anything but air?

In April 2014 Yahoo announced that they would no longer honor DNT signals, because they believed that the default web should be ‘personalized’ i.e. tailored for you based on knowledge of what you’ve been up to; personalized thus joins relevant and interest-based as synonyms (and alarm bells) for surveillance-based advertising and content selection.

But Yahoo wasn’t finished: following a deal where they bought themselves the default search box on Firefox, they announced in November 2015 that they would be honoring DNT requests for Firefox users. Mmmmh. Why only Firefox users – oh did Mozilla make them sign up to that? Perhaps because Mozilla was one of the birthplaces of DNT? And what would honor mean exactly? It hardly matters as Yahoo may well change their position again once their takeover is complete. Or perhaps they’ll claim that they couldn’t do anything for the last five years because they were waiting for agreement at the W3C. Yawn.

Encrypted Mail

So now to the most delicious irony of all. After the uproar surrounding the Snowden revelations one of big tech’s responses was to implement encryption at various points in the network. The aspect of this closest to users was Google’s project to develop an end-to-end encryption plug-in for gmail. This was an open-source project and Yahoo declared that they would make it available for their webmail system as well. This was good for users but it would also involve a cost for the companies as both sell advertising based on scanning users’ email to select ‘relevant’ ‘personalized’ ads. If the mails are encrypted this type of analysis is not possible, resulting in lower revenues. But the NSA revelations  hurt a lot of people’s pride and made the tech industry as a whole look compromised, poodles of the US government’s PRISM program, so some notional loss could be stomached.

Alex Stamos, then head of security at Yahoo, set about recruiting programmers and engineers to move it on. In March 2015 this system was ready to demo and was unveiled at SXSW. Right around then Yahoo had been requested to search their whole email traffic for a specified identifier. This was implemented secretly and without consultation with Stamos and the security team, so that when they uncovered it they mistook it for a hostile insert placed by an intruder. The rest is well known: Stamos left Yahoo shortly afterwards to become head of security at Facebook. The Chrome extension for end-to-end encryption of Yahoo mail in Chrome was never officially completed and launched, although one of the lead developers says it’s basically good to go. (Incidentally, what happened to Google’s much trumpeted efforts in this regard?)

Yahoo has many other sins uncatalogued here, but what astonishes me is how erratic and capricious they are. What would you trust them with? Better, as the Intercept suggests, to just delete your account.


by nonrival

October 30, 2016

Data Knightmare

DataKnightmare Ep4

Nuova puntata sugli assistenti digitali.

by Runtime Radio

October 28, 2016

videogame confessional forum

kenji ono

My name is Kenji Ono and I was born in 1971. I live in Tokyo. I came to be an editor of a Game Qritique magazine in 1994. It was published by Micromagazine Corporation in Japan and I came to be an...

by david wolinsky

October 26, 2016

The Next Layer

My "New Tendencies" Recent Book Tour

In this picture story, I recapitulate my recent New Tendencies book tour between early September and end of October 2016, which took me from Madrid to Zagreb, from, London to New York and Warsaw.

The lecture series started in Madrid, at the Cold Atlantic conference at Museo Reina Sofía. I was happy to meet well known scholars and have discussions with them, such as Serge Guilbaut, Terry Smith and Sarah Wilson which helped to open my horizon on the contested zones of what used to be called Modern Art and it feels great to be involved in that collective endeavour of rewriting its history and possibly 'provincialzing Modernism' as reportedly Okwei Enwezor demanded, in other words, making productive the cracks in discourses and developing new ideas not just on the past but also the present and the future.



Sara Wilson at Cold Atlantic

The next stop was Ars Electronica in Linz. There, I was surrounded by creative robots:



The book launch and panel discussion at Museum of Contemporary Art Zagreb felt particularly nice since the lecture and panel was attended by participants of New Tendencies, and by colleagues who had supported my research.

This was the view from the panel:
On the panel the atmosphere was cheerful, with Matko Mestrovic next to me, background Hrvoje Klasić, historian and Sunčica Ostoić, a member of the curatorial collective Kontejner.

The OpenFields conference by RIXC Center for New Media Culture in Riga from September 29 to Oct 1st was another highlight. RIXC have been organising this kind of event since 20 years. In 2016, both exhibition and conference were held at the new National Latvian Library, a giant hypermodern building on the river bank, opposite the city centre. My book was presented together with Christiane Paul's book Companion to Digital Art. The event was very well attended and we have a great time exchanging ideas.

The lecture at Goldsmiths, University of London, on October 6th, held as a Thursday Club in Ben Pimlott building, was like a 'homegame' for me. Here I did my practice based PhD in Arts and Computational Technology, supervised by Prof. Janis Jefferies. Sean Cubitt, Prof of Media and Communications, and series editor of Leonardo Series at MIT Press who commissioned my book, was present, as were Atau Tanaka, Josephine Berry, Mukul Patel, and other friends, old and new. Ann Twiselton of the London office of MIT Press was there and sold quite a few books which I then had to sign, so this was a proper book launch.

From left to right: Atau Tanaka, Janis Jefferies, the author, Ann Twiselton

The next stop was New York City. The Austrian Cultural Forum allowed us to stay in their building, an architectural landmark designed by Raimund Abraham, located on 52nd street. My first engagement in NYC was a seminar by Trebor Scholz at the Eugene Lang College of the New School. The next lecture was organised by Mark Tribe at the School of Visual Arts on October 18. The evening was jointly hosted by several MFA and MA courses which made for a great, mostly student audience. Participation in the discussion afterwards was lively. The last event in NYC was a book presentation and panel hosted by Cabinet in partnership with Rhizome. Michael Connor of Rhizome chaired the panel, with contributions from Eva Díaz and Rachel Wetzler. It was great to get such expert feedback to my book from people who had already read it.

The final stop was Warsaw, where on October 21 and 22 the conference The Other Transatlantic - Theorizing Kinetic and Op Art in Central and Eastern Europe and Latin America was held at Muzeum Sztuki Nowoczesnej w Warszawie/ Museum of Modern Art in Warsaw Museum of Modern Art, Warsaw. Here I found myself again in very good company with theorists and art historians such as Ariel Jimenez, Magdalena Moskalewicz and Monica Amor (see link above for full program).

Yet also my earlier talks this year, at the College Art Association conference in Washington DC in February, at the wonderful and really fantastic ContestedSpheres conference at Kassák Múzeum and the book launch at 21er Haus should be seen as part of this exciting tour. I have made many friends and rekindled old friendships such as - to name just a few without any attempt at an exhaustive list - Atréyēē Gupta, Klara Kemp-Welch, Adair Routhwaite, Amanda Rath, Eszter Fogarasi, Reuben Fowkes, Paula Barreiro López, Michael Connor, Mark Tribe, Christiane Paul, Rasa Smite, Darko Fritz, Monica Amor, Marta Dziewańska, Geoff Cox, Marcus Lund, Paul Brown, Atau Tanaka, Josephine Berry and many more.

My very next lecture will be at University of Applied Arts, Vienna, November 3, followed by two university seminars in Germany, one with Frieder Nake in Bremen and one with Wolfgang Ernst at Humboldt University Berlin, but this is it for the time being as far as my book tour is concerned. I hope that this book now gets legs and starts a life of its own. Of course I will be happy to give further lectures and participate in conference if I get invited, but this is it in terms of a concerted initial tour. It has been great, so thanks to all who made it happen including support by the various Austrian Cultural Forums in various cities and the Art Section of the Federal Chancellery who kindly supported me with a stipend.

See also New Tendencies at MIT Press

by Armin Medosch