Remember back in the day when cartoon villains used to go on tv and say something like: I will only talk directly to the president. Now Presidents hear about terrorist acts on the fucking news like erebody else. These days villains go online and say stuff like: I wanna talk directly to the world!

CISPA Is The Tip, Everything Else Is The Iceberg

UH OH. America’s internet userbase has a new threat in the horizon, CISPA!
People are worried that their info and their online doings are gonna be a matter of public knowledge, like what they have now is a nice and secure network…

For fucks sake people, ITS ALL PUBLIC!

My facebook account setting is always public because I never want to suffer an illusion of privacy while going about my business online. Also because I wouldnt want Big brother to get the impression that we are exclusive.
E’rebody gets access to mine!

The thing is people, that button you push to restrict who gets access to your account is a virtual placebo. Like those crosswalk buttons in New York only even more pointless. If your government treats you like a criminal by spying on you then you had better start acting like one and cover your tracks online. Dont say anything you wouldnt be comfortable shouting from a rooftop!

So assume you’re ALWAYS broadcasting on an open channel when you’re online.
Coz trust me, the monster has got your cookies, your passwords and with social networking data, like 70% of your personality and 99% of your contacts.

Its not a matter of IF they’ve got access but of when they will feel it worth their while to dissect you!

A billion strong

 I have facebook friends from virtually every continent. And they all seem to find the website to be the best use of their time. Some are wallowing in spring, some are dancing in the sun, yet they all hobble onto this weird blue website to hear each other complain about everything! 

How is it that of all the content online, (I mean porn duh!) facebook is what most people find desirable? Its insane. I mean if it were youtube Id be like, hey, thats youtube! But status updates and photos?

I bet that right now someone is lying on a magnificent beach, hanging out with some awesome people and all they can think about doing is updating the blue stuff! Its a drug I tell you. I dunno if it raises dopamine in our systems or dopamine receptors… but this is some supernatural craving.

And why is it blue?


Serendipity On the Web

ImageSerendipity to me means always new. Because one day none of it will be new. Having an article pending wont be new. Doing a hundred pushups wont be new. Knowing what I want to pursue wont be new. Neither hope nor disappointment can maintain their novelty. What you know has to ultimately become old. Only what you don’t know can always be new. Maybe the strongest argument yet for the existence of God is the discovery that only uncertainty is certain in this Universe.┬áIt is a great gift to a curious race of humans from a little sun called sol, to be presented on the dawn of its civilization with a Universe as full of serendipity as it is infinite. This is the gift of the gods as deists would unfailingly announce.

If there is a miracle out there it is serendipity. If there is hope it is the hope that you will be surprised. Pleasantly surprised. As some look to ever increasing knowledge about reality to be a source of control and the ability to predict, I look to the same path-finding scientific research with the hope that I will be surprised by what they find. I think we need it. The strangeness that is.

We absolutely must, from time to time, recover that feeling of uncharted depth. Maybe that’s why explorers set off from the old world and discovered the new. Maybe that is how we humans, before the advent of modern ships had managed to spread onto 6 continents, with only the intolerable Antarctica┬á barring our way. What could these first humans and those 15th century Spanish explorers have had in common other than an undying thirst for the unknown?

Serendipity is an old word. The phenomenon itself is as old as mankind. But the online world has breathed new life into the term. We click on a strange new pop up icon on our desktop for the same reason that our ancestors hopped onto wooden vessels and floated off to near certain doom. We hate boredom just a little more than we fear the unknown.

Serendipity feeds hope. It’s the voice that says, “there is always a chance this wont suck!” A great example is the ballooning growth of the world wide web. In a few decades its population of users has grown by billions. I mean it was only invented in 1990. I was born a mere two years later and it has been an indelible part of my education and entertainment. The sheer wealth which this tool has generated is truly incredible. Millions of online jobs now exist where mere decades ago there were none. Companies like Apple have a new lease on life because of the possibilities which the interconnected medium of the web affords.

One of the world wide web’s most consistent growth sources is in fact serendipity. Through hyperlinks, strangers are connected to what will eventually become familiar content to them. That’s how once upstarts come to dominate an industry such as search and old legends like Netscape are bought up and recycled by the survivors. Hyperlinks are one of the most significant part of the web. they are a force of egalitarianism the likes of which both Marx and Engels could never have dreamed of. Through hyperlinks, titans such as coca cola and an average blog from the web have the same weight if you measure the connectivity of their url. Information is indeed a primary function and product of the web. But it is the unexpected kind that is the most interesting.

The advertising value of exploiting online serendipity has been achieved by search engines such as Google. Their use of sponsored ads which match with a user’s search term tends to exploit the power┬á of serendipity. These sponsored links maintain their unexpectedness while realizing very expected returns for the search company. We stumble upon so much online that it is almost a rule that the greatest value the web has to offer is serendipity.

Almost every significant website in my life, I have happened to find accidentally. I discovered Wikipedia though Google and I discovered Google through its infamy as a search leader. My cherished file sharing(stealing) sites like 4shared came into my life accidentally through a web search. They were just there. When I needed them the most they were just there. Like a part of my fate or something.

This is the effect I speak of when I say serendipity. I speak of moments when the entire web just aligns to make your day. Like a super-funny video you run into on YouTube. Lolcats, anesthetized kids, Gagnem style are just a few examples of the cool stuff I’ve bumped into whilst surfing.

The web is such an interesting and useful cluster of infomedia that practically guarantees you that moments such as these will occur. It’s a different place. Online, you’re only bored if you so choose to be. There are too many interesting people out there doing amazing things to leave you out of a worthwhile online experience. It’s a web. Don’t judge it, surf it!

Ownership on the web

ImageNewspapers like The New York Times just don’t respect the internet anymore. It’s that simple. They weren’t born here and they treat the web kike a rental. They might even have it in their heads that this WWW thing is just another fad. Id like to remind these hard copy dinosaurs that other titans have previously denigrated the new god and pretty soon there after filed for bankruptcy.

The particular issue that I’m decrying here is a new policy by The New York Times’ online edition to reduce the maximum number of articles one can view gratis on their site from 20 per month to 10. As a site that had previously lost its lead as the most viewed online news vendor to The Huffington post, this was the wrong move.

For your love of money NYT, you have opened the doors to all the evils resulting from antagonizing Netizens. We have the privilege of being a mere Google search away from viewing similar if not better content from one of your many competitors. The prospect of having to put on a coat and go to the newsstand to pick up a newspaper is no more. Your insult to us is just as swiftly rebuffed. The only difference is that unlike you, we have mobility. We demand our right as Netizens. Our right to content!

How can they justify making it harder for those who still consume their content, at a time when the tide against them is rising. It’s simply alienating to what remaining loyalists they have. It’s these types of “real world” power trips that have probably caused some of the paper’s current ebbing support. The web is too fluid a medium for anyone to think that they can build a wall that will isolate content successfully.

The New York Times’ declining sales have been attributed to the rise of alternative media including competition from social media. This is kind of obvious since The New York Times has the exact opposite strategy regarding content as does social media. The paper seeks to restrict and maintain a hold on content, how its consumed and by whom. Social media, specifically sites like Facebook have very open policies regarding content. The worst it can get on one of these sites is that its specific users can restrict access to their own contributions. Maybe this stark difference in how these organizations, organize content is the reason why The New York Times is in decline and social media is on the rise.

Social media grew up with the web. It doesn’t exist without it. That is why sites like Facebook and twitter teat their users like MVPs and not like annoying hobos who want free content. The problem with The New York Times is that it acts as if there is any future scenario where it exists without the web. It’s looking longingly at a time when squares were named after it and balls dropped in its honor. Reality check NYT, it’s not 1851 anymore. You’re no longer the toast of the world.

Hundreds of millions of people log on to Facebook daily. You’re just lucky if you can get a measly 30 million. The web is like a brand new country club. You see in the old world you may have been considered as something. But here, online, there are millionaires, and there are centimillionaires!

My advice to “the Old Gray Lady” , adapt or die.