John Hopkins on Thu, 31 Oct 2013 17:54:19 +0100 (CET)

[Date Prev] [Date Next] [Thread Prev] [Thread Next] [Date Index] [Thread Index]

Re: <nettime> Anthony Townsend: What if the smart cities of the future are chock full of bugs?

Morning meditations upon seeing that subject line...

What if the smart cities of the future are chock full of bugs?

Or if the Internet of Things *is* the Internet of NSA's Things?

At this point anyone who has 'monitored' nettime over the last (almost 20 years!) should realize the pattern: first comes the desire to prevail, then the technology to support that desire spills out of the womb of the military-industrial-academic(-counterculture) complex, then come the Siren (Server) songs of Silicon Valley along with hyperventilating dot-com VC-ism and the huffing of early-adopters, then comes the skeptical reception by European cultural/intellectual circles, then comes the need to 'keep up' by Eurocrats who then proffer cultural funding for creative industries to 'research' it all, then comes a slew of (re-action-ary) art projects about said technologies, several festivals, catalogs, exhibitions and earnest performances, and new 'ground-breaking' academic programs upsetting the old media studies departments by "engaging" the 'new' technologies, then academic journals started up, (all along the hapless media-koolaid-drinking consumers spread around the world are doing what they do best), [and a bunch of other increasingly confusing mediated crap happens during the previous steps], and then folks are suddenly reminded where the technology came from originally and why it was made. doh!

The teats of technology rest on the bosom of an evolutionary product,
the human social system, that will do whatever it takes to project its
life into the future. This does not include optimizing the life of
the individual organism, but in optimizing the survivability of the


Dr. John Hopkins, BSc, MFA, PhD
ensconced, unarmed and dangerous in the burn zone

#  distributed via <nettime>: no commercial use without permission
#  <nettime>  is a moderated mailing list for net criticism,
#  collaborative text filtering and cultural politics of the nets
#  more info:
#  archive: contact: