I’m going to combine two ideas here: that of cloud computing and that of wireless networks. In a lot of ways they depend on each other: cloud computing is certainly enhanced by wireless, and wireless has really come into its full through cloud computing. I feel that this combination is an important step in both technical progress and also the acclimatization of culture into this mindset of information and connectivity. However, I don’t believe our course will continue in this way.
I believe that in cities, where there are many people with personal devices, we will construct our own networks. Personal devices - laptops, desktops, phones, tablets, etc - can already connect without the help of the larger network. True, it’s an ability which is talked down and covered up by the larger networks, but it exists. We will start to construct our own networks. Devices are fast approaching the storage and processing capabilities to hold all of your personal information (and you can still collaborate via the network), so off-site storage will soon be unnecessary. What is to prevent the hackers, the makers from further developing and propagating city-wide stand-alone networks?
I do not believe this will replace connection points to wireless provided by larger corporations, at least not for quite some time. We are connected to each other regardless of geography, and this is not a situation I would like to see change. However, relying on those around you to connect to people would provide both a sense of geographical community (not to trump worldwide community, but only as another form of human interaction) as well as an independence from corporate-granted access to information.
As ridiculous as it sounds, and after the European Parliament clearly stated by the re-adoption of the amendment 138/46 that access to Internet was a fundamental right, the French National Assembly accepted the Hadopi bill.
The bill will directly reach the French Senate tomorrow, and will be probably voted the same way, without any surprise, since the French President N. Sarkozy made a point he wouldn’t allow another blow to his bill like the one he had in early april.
Guy Bono, in reaction to the vote, declared he will call the European Commission to challenge the French Government upon censoring the Hadopi, for being against the community rights.
Hadopi being supposed to protect the intellectual rights of “artists” during the digital revolution, I’ll leave the final words to someone I recognize as one, M.J. Keenan, the lead singer of Tool, who tweeted this, this afternoon, probably not about the Hadopi but oddly fitting in this context:
Danny sat quietly, a sporadic jerk the only thing punctuating his otherwise silent countenance. His left eye had gone milky white with cataract, his skin was a mottled yellow and sickly, and despite the fair temperature of the room on a fine spring morning, whispery rivulets of sweat snuck their way down his hot brow passed his earlobe until they found a hiding spot under his jaw.
Tiffany rolled the dice over the game board and took her turn, landing on a penalty space. She groaned while Kent snickered. “Stop laughing, Kent,” she gave him a mean look.
“I wouldn’t laugh if you weren’t such a stupid player,” he stuck his tongue out.
Tiffany did her best to ignore him and passed the dice to Danny. Or tried to anyway… for the umpteenth time.
“Danny if you don’t roll, Kent will win,” she cajoled half-heartedly. “You know you are the only one who can beat him,” she smiled, but it was a hard sell. Danny wasn’t looking so good. Maybe he was sick.
“Ah forget him!” Erica grabbed the dice from Tiffany’s outstretched hand. “Besides… he smells.” The third-grader was trying to hold her breath while playing but it was impossible as the bedroom window was open and Danny was closest to it. The otherwise soft breeze coming through it brought with it a putrid smell of something like the egg Ms Bircham had brought to class for a science experiment and let rot on purpose.
“He always smells!” chirped Louis, the fat kid from down the block with thick glasses.
“Stop it you guys! That’s not nice. Danny has is our friend!” Tiffany demonstrated.
Erica rolled ignoring the outburst; the only thing she was interested in was finishing the game. Her mother had promised she could go home after it was over. Why she even had to be here was beyond her. Today was piano lessons and she preferred them over playing stupid games with the other neighborhood kids. But she knew it was going to be a long game as she watched one of the dice bounce off the board and careened haphazardly under Danny’s pant leg. The look on her face went from one of haughtiness to open disgust.
“BWHAHAAA!” Kent began to laugh obnoxiously, a common and annoying habit of his.
Erica balled his fists and was ready to punch Kent in the nose when Tiffany stopped her. “It’s okay. I’ll get it,” with a smile.
But that just ticked Erica off more. She didn’t want to seem like a chicken in front of the others and Tiffany’s smug smile was too much.
As she reached forward stretching to reach the piece without getting too close, Danny’s breathing suddenly intensified. His breath hit her in the face like a brick wall—heavy and sickly sweet like her hospitalized Great-Grandmother Denyi who also smelled, like, well…
“Groooss!” Erica screeched and recoiled as drool dripped down from Danny’s open mouth onto the back of her hand. “I don’t wanna play no more! MOM!!!” She began to tear up.
The words were barely out of Erica’s mouth when Danny finally became animated. His head whipped in the direction of the young girl’s pleas for her mother to come get her and a deep, undeniable hunger took control…
Downstairs in the living room of Mrs Henders the screams could be clearly heard via the baby monitor she had hid under her daughter Tiffany’s bed.
The other mothers in the room with her all turned their attention toward it as well. Then came the unmistakable growling they had half-expected, half-feared, and the sound of running feet across the ceiling which ended in a desperate banging on the door at the top of the stairs leading to the second floor.
“Did you lock the door?” Carol, Louis’ mother asked her eyes somewhat bovine in complacency and worry.
“Of course,” Mrs Henders smiled, and reached for the nice China cup before her friend, “More tea?”
“Thank you, yes,” a relieved look crossed the woman’s face.
Erica’s mother spoke next, “I don’t mind this party ladies… in fact, I really appreciate it.” She looked down at the coffee table situated between them as if the words she sought might crystallize there before her, “I guess i just have my concerns.”
“Oh Fawn,” Mrs Lechenko reassured, “It’s no big deal. I took Danny to the dentist yesterday and had all his incisors capped so that while he’ll break the skin when he bites the other kids, he’ll just infect them, not eat.”
A smile and understanding giggling broke out among the ladies.
“I guess I’m just being silly. It really is such a relief to have this taken care of. I hear catching The Pandemic can be deadly in adults.”
“It can be,” Mrs Lechenko pointed out. “My own mother brought me to one of these parties when I was a young girl.”
Fawn fidgeted slightly and then laughed all over again, “By the way Jenny, this cake is absolutely fantastic.”
“Thank you, actually I got the recipe off Cake Net. They have all kinds of afternoon cakes.”
“Oh do you have the URL?” Carol quickly asked, not wanting to miss out.
“Just a moment, I think I have it here…” and she whipped out her PDA thumbing through her bookmarked sites to the children’s panicked screams.
This week, I want you to try to be relevant. It’s up to you to decide what is relevant for you and your followers, but I have a few suggestions to help you out. 1. Filtering yourself is the first and foremost. Everything which follows is just examples of this. 2. Unless it’s an emergency, wait at least 15 minutes to post something. If you forget it or it no longer matters, it probably wasn’t relevant. 3. If it’s only to one person, and not relevant to others, give them a text or a DM or an e-mail, don’t crowd public space with private conversation 4. Balance the informational and the personal. The point is to filter what you put out, not to filter the experiences you have. 5. Being passive aggressive or round-about online is so satisfying, isn’t it? But it’s petty and doesn’t accomplish anything, making it non-relevant.
We alter our values by altering the way we act. While it’s not an extremely slippery slope to occasionally vent about your cat peeing on your rug, or how cute that same cat can be, not having that as the main topic of your conversations will encourage you to create more things of value, and to have exchanges with people who are attempting to do the same. If you’re being responsible about the content you pass on to people who follow what you have to say, their content consumption will improve, and that helps you out as well. We’re all products of our environment, so decide what kind of environment you want to build and live in.
Other things to start on, besides your own projects: giving credit where credit is due, which includes tracing origins, and asking for permission to use others’ works. While it’s good to build on previous works, it’s also important to respect the original intent.