Sunday, June 30, 2013

Moving to Bits

Christopher Steiner of the Guardian, writing about tech and surveillance, talks about a rather chilling thought in a brilliant article titled Edward Snowden may be the last of the human spies... something that will happen, whether we like it or not.

BRT touches upon this in Big Data - With a Twist with mention of Minority Report and the human frailties of Agatha, the most prescient of the Pre Cogs used by Pre Crime, a special police squad dedicated to solving crimes before they happen, a notion the NSA might actually be trying to do using predictive analytics combined with big data in order to "protect us" from the vagaries of reality whether we like it or not.

Burning Man

Spark Pictures did a documentary on Burning Man, an annual event described by many participants as an experiment in community, art, radical self-expression, and radical self-reliance. The trailer, seen above, will make you think about the implications of something akin to Woodstock, where people came together, way back when, to participate in an event larger then themselves.

Behavior Modification

A must read about Surveillance by Alternet's  Lynn Stuart Parramore. Chilling to say the least.

Seen below is a pix taken by the former Czech Secret Police. Gives you the warm fuzzies don't you think? 

A Map of a Different Kind

Amazing video showing the local universe in 3D is simply astounding. Worth watching without question to see just how wondrous nature truly is. 

What Tully has done is less dramatic but no less important. He has mapped the universe in detail out to a distance of about 100 million light years. To put that in more human terms: Columbus’s maps of the New World described a land 3,000 miles from home, but Tully’s map extends 6,000,000,000,000,000,000 miles out. No wonder he is often referred to as a cosmic cartographer. By filling in the details, Tully has made it possible to discern the true structure of the universe: clusters of galaxies arranged into enormous filaments, bound together by invisible strands of dark matter, and tremendous lonely voids where galaxies are sparse.

Saturday, June 29, 2013


Aeon is a terrific site, dealing with deep concepts in elegant fashion ranging from the limits of science to the notions of being human in a reality we struggle to understand. In Robert Twigger's thoughtful piece titled Desert Silence, he touches upon a subject both profound and right, the power of silence and how it applies to being human.

I experienced this kind of profound silence in Death Valley, prior to becoming mostly deaf, and the impact on yours truly was amazing as it forces one to not think, to be in the present as the only thing one experiences in this kind of environment is one's self, a moment that has reamained with me to the present day. Interestingly enough, now that deafness is part of my equation, I experience silence when taking out my hearing aids in order to get away from the incessant noise of modern society. something that annoys my wife to no end. At the same time, I now understand, in small part, how the deaf remain  forever separate from the world, existing in a kind of silence the hearing will never experience unless they go to the desert and get away from it all, even if it's only for a short time. 

Thursday, June 27, 2013

Smarter Every Day

Just found a very cool YouTube site. Smarter Every Day, a science environment teaching us rubes some interesting factoids about science. The piece seen above explains the mystery of Prince Rubert's Drop. Check it out. Pretty cool without question.

Tuesday, June 25, 2013

The Art of War - Plant Style :)

PHD's terrific video on plant defenses explains, in large part, why Monsanto's GMO corn is being devoured by the ravenous Corn Borer beetle, something Monsanto is apoplectic about given just how protective of this "wonderful" crop Monsanto truly is. As often stated before, Nature always finds a way.

Monday, June 24, 2013

X Marks the Spot

 Sang Mun, an extremely talented designer, concerned with the 24/7 surveillance being conducted on us has come up with a set of fonts OCR and AI cannot decipher, something pretty impressive to say the least. What he has done is important, something I bet Thomas Jefferson would have approved of without question. As often stated, tech has no morality, it depends on who using it to see the impact it has on society. This is an example of a good way though it is so sad technology like this has to be created in the first place. The founding fathers must be rolling in their graves seeing what is happening to this once great nation.

Seen above are Sang's fonts, which work on Apple and Windows. 
According to Sang, the X example works best.

Sunday, June 23, 2013

Are We Rome?

Terrific video showing how Rome descended from a vibrant democracy to a decadent dictatorship with indemic corruption, wealth disparity and surveillance 24/7. Sounds like America, doesn't it? 

Orwell lives as seen by the fact Snowden is accused of espionage even though he has not given sensitive information to any other country nor was he spying in any way since he was employed by Booz Allen to work as a contractor for the NSA. 

His "crime" sort of speak, was the fact he blew the whistle on the 24/7 spying exercise, courtesy of the NSA, something we citizens have the right to know about since we pay the bills to enable the NSA to spy on us, a simple fact conveniently ignored by the mainline press and lockstep politicos who routinely call Snowden a traitor and not someone who acted like Daniel Ellsberg, when he released the Pentagon Papers showing the duplicity of the government regarding the fubar known as Vietnam.

The US has become a digitally driven combination of Brave New World and 1984, where language is distorted to defend the indefensible while the middle class and the poor get ground into dust by the power elite and the minions who serve them.

Can we reverse course? Perhaps, if we are lucky and courageous enough to make a difference but time is running out on a once great nation that really did have an American Dream back in the day.

Wednesday, June 19, 2013

Creationism - Not

Bill Nye rocks. Science and how it works is the bailiwick he works in and he's right. Science is designed to be disproved, this is why science is right, something to consider before abdicating the right to question in order to believe in whatever.

Friday, June 14, 2013

Nature, in the end, rules

 Alistair Chapman is an extraordinary cinematographer. His latest will blow you away. 
Nature, in the end - rules.

An Interesting "How To".

Click here to learn more about the offshore way to protect your stash while leaving
others to pick up the tab of supporting our country. Sounds ethical to me, right?

Thursday, June 13, 2013

The Canary in the Coal Mine

Honey bees are a favorite of mine. Videotaping these industrial wonders doing their thing in flowers of all types never ceases to amaze but less of them come around doing what they do best because of what we are doing to their world.

In almost every way, if one looks at how we produce food and generate energy at industrial levels, the processes are inherently destructive as seen by the following:
  1. 90% of the fish stocks in the ocean are being harvested at a rate too fast for the sea to replenish.
  2. People and animals in PA are getting sick because of the environmental impact of fracking on their environment.
  3. The Alberta Tar Sands project is the largest land operation in the world. It could grow to the size of New York before all the Bitumen is extracted from the earth. 
  4. The tar sands di bit is the dirtiest fuel on earth.
  5. GMO corn is now banned in eight nations including Hungary, France and Mexico, but not in the US, due to the negetive impact it has had on the environment.
  6. Beef and chicken are unofficially considered frankenfoods thanks to the extensive use of steroids, antibiotics and genetic manipulation to produce livestock able to grow bigger and faster in time frames not possible to achieve without the use of these methodologies. See Food Inc as reference.
Any questions?

Monday, June 10, 2013


 Had to put this in about Prism from the Washington Post. Pretty informative to say the least.
Seen below is a graphic showing a "how To" for techs who use this most powerful and intrusive technology to spy on us rubes. 

Sunday, June 09, 2013

Big Data - With a Twist

In reality, Big Brother, formerly know as the Total Information Awareness program, has morped into prism, a bigger and better way to spy on us using ever faster tech imbued with AI and ultra fast connects to the web, allowing said environment (NSA) to spy on anyone using digital systems (smartphones, tablets, laptops etc., etc.) linked to the internet. A this point in time, Prism is Big Brother edition 2013 but we already knew that, right? To this end, BRT has posted numerous blurbs about this disquieting development for quite some time as seen in a post titled Face Off & Then Some discussing face recognition and the NSA's now completed project of building the most powerful surveillance environment known to man (Bluffdale, UT).  

It gets creepier. With predicative analytics an essential part of big data, the notion of having a digital facsimile of the pre-cogs of Minority Report is not far off, something the NSA, among significant others, is avidly developing as this tech, supposedly, would not have the foibles of humanity as seen in Agatha, the most powerful of the three Pre-Cogs used by Pre-Crime, the special police force of the future circa 2054.

Saturday, June 08, 2013

The reality of things

From 24/7 surveillance, courtesy of Prism, to the empty promise of energy independence from our beloved president, the incessant drumbeat of platitudes of newspeak issue forth from the corporate controlled press mimicing Minitrue, the political organ of Ingsoc, the party of Big Brother.

The Insoc logo (i.e. English Socialism) seen above, inadvertently shows how Democrats and Republicans go hand in hand when it comes to the really important things in life, i.e.1. Get elected  2. Stay in power by getting reelected and 3. Server the powers at be who enable the pols to stay in power by funneling money to their never ending campaigns for the sole purpose of getting reelected. With this in mind, some really smart wag stated, with true insight, that America is now a combination of 1984 and Brave New World with newspeak spouted by our politicians to explain away Iraq, Afghanistan, due process and energy independence while big media and the process food giants ply us with football, Cheese Doodles and machismo in the quise of huge trucks, beer and never ending patriotism.

Seen above is the stratification of society in 1984. Looks familiar doesn't it, especially when one substitutes the entities depicted with ones we are familiar with. i.e. The president, Congress/power elite, government workers and us rubes. Makes one think doesn't it?