Silicon Valley Techno-Utopianism

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Thread for general discussion of, and feeble resistance to, our new overpaid 20-something savant overlords, starting with this lovely article:

http://thebaffler.com/blog/2014/05/mouthbreathing_machiavellis

Doritos Loco Parentis (Hurting 2), Thursday, 22 May 2014 05:27 (five years ago) link

is the baffler as smug and unreadable as it was in the late 90s/early 00s? to be frank all i ever got from them (or thomas frank solo) was a withering contempt for most of america, rather than any mournful concern.

display name changed. (amateurist), Thursday, 22 May 2014 05:41 (five years ago) link

haha to be frank see what I (unintentionally) did there?

display name changed. (amateurist), Thursday, 22 May 2014 05:41 (five years ago) link

nerds with power

shudder

j., Thursday, 22 May 2014 05:42 (five years ago) link

This is the first Baffler thing I've bothered with in a while. I thought it had its moments back in its earlier incarnation -- there was an essay on cities and the "creative class" that I still refer to mentally sometimes. I think the internet has kind of made the sort of bullshit-skewering it specialized in more widespread and diffuse.

Doritos Loco Parentis (Hurting 2), Thursday, 22 May 2014 05:46 (five years ago) link

oh yeah, they had some good articles from time to time. there was one incredibly condescending and snide and yet fascinating one about gay pornography. unfortinately they also published ray carney's screed against tarantino and a lot of other worthless crap. and i always felt tom frank needed to have a few beer bottles smashed over his head.

display name changed. (amateurist), Thursday, 22 May 2014 05:48 (five years ago) link

Frank seems kind of worse to me now in his Harper's editorials. I always hated Lapham's and it feels like Frank is really trying his best to assume the mantle.

Doritos Loco Parentis (Hurting 2), Thursday, 22 May 2014 05:53 (five years ago) link

Anyway

In a widely covered secessionist speech at a Silicon Valley “startup school” last year, there was more than a hint of Moldbug (see video below). The speech, by former Stanford professor and Andreessen Horowitz partner Balaji Srinivasan, never mentioned Moldbug or the Dark Enlightenment, but it was suffused with neoreactionary rhetoric and ideas. Srinivasan used the phrase “the paper belt” to describe his enemies, namely the government, the publishing industries, and universities. The formulation mirrored Moldbug’s “Cathedral.” Srinivasan’s central theme was the notion of “exit”—as in, exit from democratic society, and entry into any number of corporate mini-states whose arrival will leave the world looking like a patchwork map of feudal Europe.

Forget universal rights; this is the true “opt-in society.”

An excerpt:

We want to show what a society run by Silicon Valley would look like. That’s where “exit” comes in . . . . It basically means: build an opt-in society, ultimately outside the US, run by technology. And this is actually where the Valley is going. This is where we’re going over the next ten years . . . [Google co-founder] Larry Page, for example, wants to set aside a part of the world for unregulated experimentation. That’s carefully phrased. He’s not saying, “take away the laws in the U.S.” If you like your country, you can keep it. Same with Marc Andreessen: “The world is going to see an explosion of countries in the years ahead—doubled, tripled, quadrupled countries.”

Srinivasan ticked through the signposts of the neoreactionary fantasyland: Bitcoin as the future of finance, corporate city-states as the future of government, Detroit as a loaded symbol of government failure and 3D-printed firearms as an example of emerging technology that defies regulation.

The speech succeeded in promoting the anti-democratic authoritarianism at the core of neoreactionary thought, while glossing over the attendant bigotry. This has long been a goal of some in the movement. One such moderate—if the word can be used in this context—is Patri Friedman, grandson of the late libertarian demigod Milton Friedman. The younger Friedman expressed the need for “a more politically correct dark enlightenment” after a public falling out with Yarvin in 2009.

Friedman has lately been devoting his time (and leveraging his family name) to raise money for the SeaSteading Institute, which, as the name suggests, is a blue-sea libertarian dream to build floating fiefdoms free of outside regulation and law. Sound familiar?

The principal backer of the SeaSteading project, Peter Thiel, is also an investor in companies run by Balaji Srinivasan and Curtis Yarvin. Thiel is a co-founder of PayPal, an original investor in Facebook and hedge fund manager, as well as being the inspiration for a villainous investor on the satirical HBO series Silicon Valley. Thiel’s extreme libertarian advocacy is long and storied, beginning with his days founding the Collegiate Network-backed Stanford Review. Lately he’s been noticed writing big checks for Ted Cruz.

He’s invested in Yarvin’s current startup, Tlon. Thiel invested personally in Tlon co-founder John Burnham. In 2011, at age 18, Burnham accepted $100,000 from Thiel to skip college and go directly into business. Instead of mining asteroids as he originally intended, Burnham wound up working on obscure networking software with Yarvin, whose title at Tlon is, appropriately enough, “benevolent dictator for life.”

Doritos Loco Parentis (Hurting 2), Thursday, 22 May 2014 05:57 (five years ago) link

I love this stuff, these guys are like comic book supervillains.

Doritos Loco Parentis (Hurting 2), Thursday, 22 May 2014 05:58 (five years ago) link

yeah i dunno, this seems discountable. it's not going to get much traction.

display name changed. (amateurist), Thursday, 22 May 2014 06:33 (five years ago) link

i still think we shd take these guys out before they acquire sentience

coign of wantage (Noodle Vague), Thursday, 22 May 2014 06:35 (five years ago) link

another school of thought says that they just need to experience a moment of humanity to temper their wild anti-humanist delusions

we could administer this cure from a safe distance thanks to their work

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=PspagsTFvlg

j., Thursday, 22 May 2014 06:41 (five years ago) link

Been dismayed with The Baffler since it's new revival. Seems about as shrill as Adbusters these days.

Elvis Telecom, Thursday, 22 May 2014 06:44 (five years ago) link

OTOH, there's these guys to make fun of: http://nymag.com/news/features/laundry-apps-2014-5/#

Elvis Telecom, Thursday, 22 May 2014 06:46 (five years ago) link

i still think we shd take these guys out before they acquire sentience

― coign of wantage (Noodle Vague), Thursday, May 22, 2014 6:35 AM (8 hours ago) Bookmark Flag Post Permalink

100%

purposely lend impetus to my HOOS (BIG HOOS aka the steendriver), Thursday, 22 May 2014 15:10 (five years ago) link

yeah i dunno, this seems discountable. it's not going to get much traction.

― display name changed. (amateurist), Thursday, May 22, 2014 6:33 AM (8 hours ago) Bookmark Flag Post Permalink

i'd be more willing to discount it if these weren't people with money, political fever dreams, and the ability to build & destory things

purposely lend impetus to my HOOS (BIG HOOS aka the steendriver), Thursday, 22 May 2014 15:11 (five years ago) link

Yeah I'm not exactly alarmed yet but I am a little o_O

Doritos Loco Parentis (Hurting 2), Thursday, 22 May 2014 15:12 (five years ago) link

these people aren't good at building things that people actually need to survive so I dunno - the rhetoric is horrible and these people are frightening, at the same time they're woefully inept

Οὖτις, Thursday, 22 May 2014 15:14 (five years ago) link

fantastic article, thank you for sharing

famous instagram God (waterface), Thursday, 22 May 2014 15:15 (five years ago) link

A seafaring community of 10 plutocrats is probably going to do just fine. They can just take a private jet back to the US any time they need fresh virgins to feed on. They don't want the rest of us anyway.

popchips: the next snapple? (seandalai), Thursday, 22 May 2014 15:18 (five years ago) link

Shouldn't that be Tlön, and holy shit we do not need techno-libertarians referencing Borges

a strange man (mh), Thursday, 22 May 2014 15:20 (five years ago) link

I thought the setting up a new country idea sounded really good, hopefully it would end like jonestown

badg, Thursday, 22 May 2014 15:21 (five years ago) link

I am all in favor of techno-libertarian island

a strange man (mh), Thursday, 22 May 2014 15:22 (five years ago) link

me too. preferably one that will be underwater in a few decades.

Οὖτις, Thursday, 22 May 2014 15:25 (five years ago) link

tru

purposely lend impetus to my HOOS (BIG HOOS aka the steendriver), Thursday, 22 May 2014 15:25 (five years ago) link

im less worried about these creeps building their own bioshock dystopias than i am about them using their tremendous money and influence to undermine regulation and other democratic things (tm) at home

socki (s1ocki), Thursday, 22 May 2014 15:28 (five years ago) link

yeah that is a more serious danger

Οὖτις, Thursday, 22 May 2014 15:28 (five years ago) link

I wonder if we can convince them to relocate to Canada

a strange man (mh), Thursday, 22 May 2014 15:28 (five years ago) link

I think their politics might go over well in, like, Edmonton

a strange man (mh), Thursday, 22 May 2014 15:29 (five years ago) link

It should be fun to watch what happens when the VC money starts to dry up.

Doritos Loco Parentis (Hurting 2), Thursday, 22 May 2014 15:43 (five years ago) link

they all scramble for the surviving corporate monoliths

Οὖτις, Thursday, 22 May 2014 15:44 (five years ago) link

This Baffler article mentions Nick Land. That's kind of depressing, is he fully in that camp? I've only read some of his stuff but have liked work from his contemporaries.

a strange man (mh), Thursday, 22 May 2014 15:46 (five years ago) link

isn't his own camp bad enough???

j., Thursday, 22 May 2014 15:54 (five years ago) link

maybe! I'm out of the loop

a strange man (mh), Thursday, 22 May 2014 15:56 (five years ago) link

yes, nick land is fully in

goole, Thursday, 22 May 2014 16:19 (five years ago) link

this is all a lil weird to me cos reading these dudes has been a minor internet fascination of mine for a long time

if anything, land's story is evidence against the thesis that an encounter with adulthood will chill these guys out: he was a philosophy professor in the 80s (?) and 90s, left for china at some point to be a journalist, was a pro-war neocon type in the early 00s and at some point during/after the 08 crash flipped to austrian economics, "race realism" (if you don't mind me using their euphemisms for a sec) and all the rest.

i feel super weird that even know this shit tbh

goole, Thursday, 22 May 2014 16:22 (five years ago) link

the connection with silicon valley utopian-supremacy is only one leg of the thing, there are linkages to a lot of weird old righty type scenes that have been left behind by contemporary conservatism, which have been kept alive in its most public face by association with ron paul. but also the remnants of european throne-and-altar type stuff

goole, Thursday, 22 May 2014 16:25 (five years ago) link

this isn't what I think of when I think of 'techno-utopianism' these dudes are just idiots

dude (Lamp), Thursday, 22 May 2014 16:26 (five years ago) link

really the most salient through-line is hostility to democracy.

xp yeah this thread title is a little narrow & off from the corey pein article

goole, Thursday, 22 May 2014 16:28 (five years ago) link

feel like the broader 'apps with solve it'/obsessed with meritocracy and measurement/transnational professionalism stuff that permeates the valley and its politics is way more pernicious and worth countering than these dudes who cant help but marginalize themselves by being themselves

dude (Lamp), Thursday, 22 May 2014 16:28 (five years ago) link

I feel like these guys make better bad guys than the republican party, at least their politics are internally consistent

iatee, Thursday, 22 May 2014 16:30 (five years ago) link

idk i think their predilection for lingo and willingness to set up their own discursive zones is an important idea generator.

there's huge overlap with the PUA/men's rights scene, and *their* language and pop-psych antifeminism is reeeally short work way from being conservative canon

goole, Thursday, 22 May 2014 16:32 (five years ago) link

Definitely seems like there is at the root of a lot of it a bitterness stemming from a dissonance between the "meritocracy" these people have been sold on (in which their particular skillset is supposed to make them the fittest dudes) and the reality they grew up in, and the *other* reality they grew up in (having to attend high school and go on the dating scene and such) in which their supposed superior qualities didn't seem to help so much. I know this might sound like just a rehash of the "butthurt nerd" canard, but I think there's something about the combination of ego inflation AND deflation that they experience -- one world telling them they are geniuses and another telling them they are losers at the same time, that makes them want to remake the entire world in the image of the former.

Doritos Loco Parentis (Hurting 2), Thursday, 22 May 2014 16:49 (five years ago) link

Like you don't get this kind of worldview coming out of getting sand kicked in your face alone, it's more the rage that results from feeling entitled to alpha status and then getting sand kicked in your face.

Doritos Loco Parentis (Hurting 2), Thursday, 22 May 2014 16:51 (five years ago) link

yup

Οὖτις, Thursday, 22 May 2014 16:54 (five years ago) link

And to cross reference that with the "men's rights" stuff, it's not unlike "I'm a *nice* and *intelligent* guy and yet hot babes are not throwing themselves at my feet like they are supposed to. Therefore women are defective and dangerous and I must use 'techniques' to disarm and conquer them."

Doritos Loco Parentis (Hurting 2), Thursday, 22 May 2014 16:58 (five years ago) link

is there an app for that

Οὖτις, Thursday, 22 May 2014 17:07 (five years ago) link

i'm really skeptical of 'just a thwarted nerd' type explanations. some people just end up believing this kind of shit for reasons that aren't readily explicable. in many cases it doesn't appear to be true.

goole, Thursday, 22 May 2014 17:24 (five years ago) link

yeah 'chicks just didn't want him and he's not successful' doesn't explain peter thiel very well

iatee, Thursday, 22 May 2014 17:32 (five years ago) link

will plain ole megalomania do.

ryan, Thursday, 22 May 2014 17:37 (five years ago) link

My main go-to is still a 2000yen Don Quijote find from 15 years ago lol. I bought it to supplement my Samsonite and it has replaced it.

Jersey Al (Albert R. Broccoli), Friday, 6 December 2019 20:47 (one month ago) link

But you have to take out the battery to check the bag. Also a lot of airports now have tons of charging stations even if you don't have lounge access so it seems like a meh perk.

xpost Oh, I will check out the local DonQ in Jan. I was planning on getting a bag from somewhere then. Typically, the actual hardshell is always fine but it's the handles and wheels that go first and crack out of the shell.

Yerac, Friday, 6 December 2019 20:52 (one month ago) link

check out the death stranding thread

$1,000,000 or 1 bag of honeycrisp apples (Sufjan Grafton), Friday, 6 December 2019 21:38 (one month ago) link

I also don't want a suitcase with a baby in a bubble.

Yerac, Friday, 6 December 2019 21:51 (one month ago) link

eBags.com have their own house brand and they hold up incredibly well. I still use a weekender backpack I bought from them 15 years ago, it goes with me on basically every trip

Hard shells are ridiculous btw, idgi

El Tomboto, Saturday, 7 December 2019 01:00 (one month ago) link

But you have to take out the battery to check the bag. Also a lot of airports now have tons of charging stations even if you don't have lounge access so it seems like a meh perk.

yes it was a joke. no one should buy these bags.

𝔠𝔞𝔢𝔨 (caek), Saturday, 7 December 2019 01:13 (one month ago) link

I was recently gifted an inexpensive hardshell from bed bath and beyond. It meets international carry-on restrictions, and I can fit a lot of stuff into it. It may not last that long but for now it is the best piece of luggage I've ever had
xp

Dan S, Saturday, 7 December 2019 01:16 (one month ago) link

you have to remove the battery from the bags where they’re part of the bag even if you’re not checking them now, I think. some airlines don’t even let them in the overhead compartment!

I get the convenience idea but binding a somewhat perishable commodity to a suitcase, which could last most people decades, seems like you’re acknowledging the suitcase is a disposable reputation item

mh, Saturday, 7 December 2019 01:17 (one month ago) link

I like hardshells because I sometimes take a lot of breakable things (bottles) on flights. I think I have a samsonite or delph spinner right now and my normal carry on is a weird japanese softshell. I can do 3 weeks with only a commuter backpack as long as it's not super wintery.

Yerac, Saturday, 7 December 2019 02:13 (one month ago) link

i don't know what delph is, i meant delsey.

Yerac, Saturday, 7 December 2019 02:31 (one month ago) link

Use this thread to discuss how 2 use luggage moar effective LUGGAGE ADVICE SOUGHT

El Tomboto, Saturday, 7 December 2019 04:40 (one month ago) link

I was picturing Yerac with bottles and maybe crackers stuffed in a suitcase and was pondering how endearingly on character that’d be!

mh, Saturday, 7 December 2019 19:24 (one month ago) link

lmao and rip to the scooter startup whose efforts at nominative determinism were a colossal failure

Unicorn, the electric scooter startup from the co-creator of gadget tracker Tile, is shutting down operations after blowing all its cash on Facebook and Google ads but only receiving 350 orders for its glossy white e-scooters, it claims. In an email to customers, the company says it lacks the resources to deliver any of its $699 two-wheelers, and won’t be issuing refunds “as we are completely out of funding.”

In a remorseful email, Unicorn CEO Nick Evans said the company had “totally failed as a business” and has also “spread the cost of this failure to you, the early customers that believed in us.”

Unicorn emerged six months ago as part of a new crop of scooter startups hoping to capitalize on the popularity of dockless rental services like Bird and Lime, while also pitching itself as an affordable alternative to shared scooters. In addition to having a striking profile — the all-white look was really something — the scooter was loaded with a lot of high-tech bells and whistles, like GPS tracking and smartphone-enabled locking. Naturally it included integration with Tile, Evans’ other company, which uses Bluetooth to track lost items, like a wallet, keys, or phone.

But now Unicorn is no more. The company claims it sunk all its money into advertising and marketing, as well as loan repayments and other expenses, with little leftover for production and deliveries.

"Big Joe Fuck and the Bogalusa Maniac" (bizarro gazzara), Monday, 9 December 2019 13:14 (one month ago) link

can't believe that spending all your money on advertising and forgetting to keep some aside to actually build your product was not a gangbusters business plan

"Big Joe Fuck and the Bogalusa Maniac" (bizarro gazzara), Monday, 9 December 2019 13:15 (one month ago) link

lolllll

Doctor Casino, Monday, 9 December 2019 13:44 (one month ago) link

“Unicorn”

breastcrawl, Monday, 9 December 2019 15:18 (one month ago) link

I guess their value proposition was they had an app and maybe an additional piece of hardware tagged on to a scooter they were sourcing from segway

mh, Monday, 9 December 2019 15:40 (one month ago) link

how is that not just committing fraud?

the girl from spirea x (f. hazel), Monday, 9 December 2019 16:00 (one month ago) link

look if 'fraud' is disqualifying in and of itself then we're gonna have to shut down a lot of tech companies, can't we just keep turning a blind eye and pretend we're not heading for a colossal collapse for a little bit longer

a synthesis of Trotskyism and Ufology (bizarro gazzara), Monday, 9 December 2019 16:03 (one month ago) link

Zuck's laughing all the way to the bank.

Jersey Al (Albert R. Broccoli), Monday, 9 December 2019 16:47 (one month ago) link

https://onezero.medium.com/survival-of-the-richest-9ef6cddd0cc1

The Event. That was their euphemism for the environmental collapse, social unrest, nuclear explosion, unstoppable virus, or Mr. Robot hack that takes everything down.
This single question occupied us for the rest of the hour. They knew armed guards would be required to protect their compounds from the angry mobs. But how would they pay the guards once money was worthless? What would stop the guards from choosing their own leader? The billionaires considered using special combination locks on the food supply that only they knew. Or making guards wear disciplinary collars of some kind in return for their survival. Or maybe building robots to serve as guards and workers — if that technology could be developed in time.
That’s when it hit me: At least as far as these gentlemen were concerned, this was a talk about the future of technology. Taking their cue from Elon Musk colonizing Mars, Peter Thiel reversing the aging process, or Sam Altman and Ray Kurzweil uploading their minds into supercomputers, they were preparing for a digital future that had a whole lot less to do with making the world a better place than it did with transcending the human condition altogether and insulating themselves from a very real and present danger of climate change, rising sea levels, mass migrations, global pandemics, nativist panic, and resource depletion. For them, the future of technology is really about just one thing: escape.

...

WWhen the hedge funders asked me the best way to maintain authority over their security forces after “the event,” I suggested that their best bet would be to treat those people really well, right now. They should be engaging with their security staffs as if they were members of their own family. And the more they can expand this ethos of inclusivity to the rest of their business practices, supply chain management, sustainability efforts, and wealth distribution, the less chance there will be of an “event” in the first place. All this technological wizardry could be applied toward less romantic but entirely more collective interests right now.
They were amused by my optimism, but they didn’t really buy it. They were not interested in how to avoid a calamity; they’re convinced we are too far gone. For all their wealth and power, they don’t believe they can affect the future. They are simply accepting the darkest of all scenarios and then bringing whatever money and technology they can employ to insulate themselves — especially if they can’t get a seat on the rocket to Mars.

treeship., Monday, 9 December 2019 17:44 (one month ago) link

William Gibson called it the Jackpot, a better name than the Event

the girl from spirea x (f. hazel), Monday, 9 December 2019 17:47 (one month ago) link

Allegedly this is real. I wonder why the author doesn’t disclose the names of the people at this conference though.

treeship., Monday, 9 December 2019 17:50 (one month ago) link

In any case, embellished or not, it’s true that the billionaire class isn’t interested in humanity’s collective future.

treeship., Monday, 9 December 2019 17:51 (one month ago) link

that story’s 18 months old tbf, i’m sure our overlords have reconsidered their approach and embraced eco-friendly socialism by now

a synthesis of Trotskyism and Ufology (bizarro gazzara), Monday, 9 December 2019 17:52 (one month ago) link

He probably can’t identify 100 investment bankers by sight? He was just the hired help.

Greta Van Show Feets BB (milo z), Monday, 9 December 2019 17:52 (one month ago) link

he said there were only 5 people in this room

treeship., Monday, 9 December 2019 18:09 (one month ago) link

a gift of accountability? https://t.co/QXF9SQ7jMS

— Erin Griffith (@eringriffith) December 9, 2019

𝔠𝔞𝔢𝔨 (caek), Monday, 9 December 2019 23:06 (one month ago) link

I don't know what this site is, that Slashdot linked to in their item about the news, but it speaks to what I found weird about the whole Away story when I got round to reading it after discussion here had died down. Y'know, that the only quoted example of the terrible culture was this one leader.

https://daringfireball.net/2019/12/away_replaces_ceo

The original article was also really weird about the hire of an intermediary manager to sit between the exec and the customer experience workers, making their magic work of disrupting the luggage business briefly more tolerable. The workers loved him and his sacking was a blow to morale. The story seemed to bend over backwards to avoid drawing the conclusion that, perhaps, when there is a chronic work backlog, maybe a company just needs to hire more fucking workers.

maffew12, Tuesday, 10 December 2019 14:44 (one month ago) link

I skimmed that yesterday but it's pretty obviously Gruber being a weird bootlicker and doing some weird "no, I am the woke one" about a man replacing a woman

a u.s. government department (mh), Tuesday, 10 December 2019 15:11 (one month ago) link

you see, The Verge got played by people who wanted to actually make this a success story about replacing a woman (who was toxic!) with a man, who we have had in the wings as we engineered this cover story

fwiw someone on twitter pointed out that the incoming CEO is coming from Lululemon, who notoriously have a weird corporate culture that's been documented elsewhere, including a period where they were sending their employees to Landmark Forum sessions

a u.s. government department (mh), Tuesday, 10 December 2019 15:14 (one month ago) link

fwiw if you're interested in the other follies of mr. daringfireball.net: indefensible: john gruber

a u.s. government department (mh), Tuesday, 10 December 2019 15:21 (one month ago) link

https://vcstarterkit.substack.com/p/getting-carried-away

uh as much as I'm loathe to relate to VC types, there are some decent (and some truly awful) responses here

as much as the outsourcing and globalization of support has led to roles moving away from US companies... why the fuck did they not anticipate a huge surge over the holidays and just hire a communications team elsewhere. maybe even one where.. christmas isn't necessarily a holiday for the staff?

a u.s. government department (mh), Tuesday, 10 December 2019 15:47 (one month ago) link

https://daringfireball.net/2019/12/away_replaces_ceo

hahahahahahahahhaahha

𝔠𝔞𝔢𝔨 (caek), Tuesday, 10 December 2019 17:36 (one month ago) link

incredible

https://pbs.twimg.com/media/ELw20v-XkAAIPql.jpg

https://www.nuraphone.com

mookieproof, Saturday, 14 December 2019 20:02 (one month ago) link

unbelievable

Receive Your Simulated Fluids Before The End of The Year! (bizarro gazzara), Saturday, 14 December 2019 20:04 (one month ago) link

no YOU'RE a phone

Li'l Brexit (Tracer Hand), Saturday, 14 December 2019 20:13 (one month ago) link

ok yes fuck subscriptions in general but I am curious abt these headphones, afaik this design/tech/build is not elsewhere available?

otoh not sure I trust I would trust an app to EQ for me and am afraid what it would tell me about my hearing loss

Suggest Banshee (Hadrian VIII), Sunday, 15 December 2019 16:33 (one month ago) link

EQ is a joke

Bo Johnson Overdrive (crüt), Sunday, 15 December 2019 16:39 (one month ago) link

?

When given the option I always adjust EQ levels to suit a given system.

Suggest Banshee (Hadrian VIII), Sunday, 15 December 2019 16:52 (one month ago) link

to clarify w/r/t novelty of this technology I'm referring to isolating the low end over the ear and transmitting higher frequencies via earbud

Suggest Banshee (Hadrian VIII), Sunday, 15 December 2019 16:55 (one month ago) link

mlk, gandhi, maggie

Most people that changed the world were workaholics. MLK, Gandhi, Hamilton, Thatcher, etc all worked nights and weekends.

But if you are not interested in changing the world, then working more than 40 hours a week is optional.

I choose to try to change the world. https://t.co/6G0OhMsY7t

— Auren 𝐇𝐨𝐟𝐟𝐦𝐚𝐧 (@auren) December 25, 2019

mookieproof, Thursday, 26 December 2019 02:35 (four weeks ago) link

At least two notorious adulterers on that list, and it seems that Gandhi had a questionable sex life to say the least. I assume Maggie never fucked

Swilling Ambergris, Esq. (silby), Thursday, 26 December 2019 03:48 (four weeks ago) link

Wait a mo. I consider it possible that Maggie and Dennis could have had occasional angry sex.

A is for (Aimless), Thursday, 26 December 2019 03:53 (four weeks ago) link

Who’d fuck someone named Dennis

Swilling Ambergris, Esq. (silby), Thursday, 26 December 2019 03:54 (four weeks ago) link

hmmm, makes you think

A is for (Aimless), Thursday, 26 December 2019 03:58 (four weeks ago) link

Nura came up through the university accelerator I occasionally mentor at. They stared as a couple of PhDs with some tech to make adaptive hearing aids that worked with the strengths and weaknesses of people hearing. Headphones was mainly something to do whilst they worked out how do the re gu altitude stuff for a medical device.

Headphones took off and the rest is history. The tech is cool and sounds remarkably good but I find the weird nipples in the earcups to be pretty uncomfortable. Keen to try the nuraloop buds when the come out.

Subscription is ridiculous but that’s the way of things today.

American Fear of Pranksterism (Ed), Thursday, 26 December 2019 08:49 (four weeks ago) link

two weeks pass...

they must have figured out the people they sell luggage to only read lifestyle magazines, so any news article (or the verge) wasn't going to affect their sales, right?

of course they're suing the verge, though. classic thiel move

babu frik fan account (mh), Monday, 13 January 2020 18:03 (one week ago) link

https://thebaffler.com/latest/certain-unflattering-truths-schaffer

I’ve come to the view this as part of the project of the book itself: to leave us unsettled by how its narrator, like all of us, remains somewhat in the Valley’s mindset, if not its pocket. This entanglement is a feature of the system that works, as she notes, precisely as designed. In the end, for all the generosity she extends to those around her, Wiener is unsparing with herself: “Certain unflattering truths: I had felt unassailable behind the walls of power. Society was shifting, and I felt safer inside the empire, inside the machine. It was preferable to be on the side that did the watching than the side being watched.” Wiener has written an indispensable chronicle of this era in tech, the consequences of which we will all reckon with as the next decade unfolds. Still, given the Valley’s unmatched ability to avoid any sense of guilt as the world around it burns, there is no doubt in my mind that while Uncanny Valley will be read widely and voraciously throughout the empire, Wiener’s readers—techno-skeptics and technologists alike—will be able to recognize themselves without feeling indicted.

But surely someone, somewhere, eventually, will need to feel indicted. At some point, we’re going to need the sharp end of the knife.

j., Tuesday, 21 January 2020 03:18 (three days ago) link


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