The New Aesthetic

Jun 02

“I’ve made a bot that ‘likes’ everything on Facebook,” said Julien Deswaef […]

While it sounds an easy project to execute, it turns out that Facebook has its own scripts programmed to penalise ruthless automation. Because of this, Julien has had to mimic the sporadic interactions of humans to keep the bot under the radar. The artist has also had to forfeit his own Facebook account to the bot — you could interpret this as performance art, but Julien calls it software art. Many of his friends instantly complained about having everything liked by him. I follow him/it on Facebook, and yes it’s frustrating, but it is only irritating because it holds up a mirror of how pathetic your Facebook life really is; the bot likes every single mundane trace you leave on the site.

” — Popular Protest | Grafik

Twitter / dwr:: Wal-Mart is now selling ASIC bitcoin miners.

Twitter / dwr:: Wal-Mart is now selling ASIC bitcoin miners.

May 19

[video]

May 16

“In fact, it’s all about the butts. Because players see their avatars from a third-person perspective from behind, men are confronted with whether they want to stare at a guy’s butt or a girl’s butt for 20 hours a week. Or as the study authors put it in more academic prose, gender-switching men “prefer the esthetics of watching a female avatar form.” This means that gender-switching men somehow end up adopting a few female speech patterns even though they had no intention of pretending to be a woman.” — World of Warcraft gender switching: Why men choose female avatars. (via jomc)

(via jomc)

May 15

[video]

Twitter / xor: “Whoops: cops pull over a woman, guns drawn, and force her to her knees—over ALPR mistake. 9Ct opinion today”

Twitter / xor: “Whoops: cops pull over a woman, guns drawn, and force her to her knees—over ALPR mistake. 9Ct opinion today”

May 14

Wade Guyton May Be Torpedoing His Own Sales — Vulture

Wade Guyton’s smallish but beautiful black, blue, and red Untitled is estimated to sell for between $2.5 and $3.5 million tonight, and rumor has it that there’s a guarantee of $4 million. Guyton makes his art on inkjet printers and photocopiers, and last week, he began printing scores of new paintings from the same 2005 file that produced this one, perhaps an attempt to erase the singularity of this painting and torpedo its price. He took pictures of this process and posted them on Instagram. You can go to his account (@burningbridges38) and see copies of the painting rolling out of his printer and spread out all over his studio floor. These images have gone viral. Suddenly the piece at Christie’s is identical to dozens of others. The uniqueness has gone away.

Update, two days later: the piece still sold for $3.5m.

Wade Guyton May Be Torpedoing His Own Sales — Vulture

Wade Guyton’s smallish but beautiful black, blue, and red Untitled is estimated to sell for between $2.5 and $3.5 million tonight, and rumor has it that there’s a guarantee of $4 million. Guyton makes his art on inkjet printers and photocopiers, and last week, he began printing scores of new paintings from the same 2005 file that produced this one, perhaps an attempt to erase the singularity of this painting and torpedo its price. He took pictures of this process and posted them on Instagram. You can go to his account (@burningbridges38) and see copies of the painting rolling out of his printer and spread out all over his studio floor. These images have gone viral. Suddenly the piece at Christie’s is identical to dozens of others. The uniqueness has gone away.
Update, two days later: the piece still sold for $3.5m.

A Hong Kong VC fund has just appointed an algorithm to its board.

Deep Knowledge Ventures, a firm that focuses on age-related disease drugs and regenerative medicine projects, says the program, called VITAL, can make investment recommendations about life sciences firms by poring over large amounts of data.

Just like other members of the board, the algorithm gets to vote on whether the firm makes an investment in a specific company or not. The program will be the sixth member of DKV’s board.

” — VITAL Named To Board - Business Insider

May 13

Long-Exposure Spy Cameras Will Capture Berlin’s Growth For The Next 100 Years - PSFK, via Dan W.

Artist Jonathon Keats has designed a surveillance unit that has a century-long exposure time, so it can capture the gradual change of a city over the years. Working with the Team Titanic gallery, the unauthorized urban project will see 100 of these Century Cameras hidden all across Berlin next week. The cameras serve not only as a way to uniquely document the passing of time, but also as a way to hold present-day Berliners accountable for their city’s future.

“The first people to see these photos will be children who haven’t yet been conceived. They’re impacted by every decision we make, but they’re powerless. If anyone has the right to spy on us, it’s our descendants.”

Long-Exposure Spy Cameras Will Capture Berlin’s Growth For The Next 100 Years - PSFK, via Dan W.

Artist Jonathon Keats has designed a surveillance unit that has a century-long exposure time, so it can capture the gradual change of a city over the years. Working with the Team Titanic gallery, the unauthorized urban project will see 100 of these Century Cameras hidden all across Berlin next week. The cameras serve not only as a way to uniquely document the passing of time, but also as a way to hold present-day Berliners accountable for their city’s future. “The first people to see these photos will be children who haven’t yet been conceived. They’re impacted by every decision we make, but they’re powerless. If anyone has the right to spy on us, it’s our descendants.”

"1) customer focus (not competitor focus), 2) take big swings & invent, 3) have long term view. Bezos to schoolkids." - @spencerrascoff on Twitter)

"1) customer focus (not competitor focus), 2) take big swings & invent, 3) have long term view. Bezos to schoolkids." - @spencerrascoff on Twitter)

May 12

“By analogy, the opening of Charles Dickens’ A Tale of Two Cities is nothing but a string of short phrases. Yet no one could contend that this portion of Dickens’ work is unworthy of copyright protection because it can be broken into those shorter constituent components.” — Judge Kathleen O’Malley compares the short names such as “java.lang.ref” and “java.lang.reflect,” which Oracle uses to name the APIs, to great works of literature - Tech world stunned as court rules Oracle can own APIs, Google loses copyright appeal — Tech News and Analysis

ISS HD Earth Viewing Experiment, ISS HD Earth Viewing Experiment NASAtelevision on USTREAM. Science

The High Definition Earth Viewing (HDEV) experiment aboard the ISS was activated April 30, 2014. It is mounted on the External Payload Facility of the European Space Agency’s Columbus module. This experiment includes several commercial HD video cameras aimed at the earth which are enclosed in a pressurized and temperature controlled housing. Video from these cameras is transmitted back to earth and also streamed live on this channel. While the experiment is operational, views will typically sequence though the different cameras. Between camera switches, a gray and then black color slate will briefly appear. Since the ISS is in darkness during part of each orbit, the images will be dark at those times. During periods of loss of signal with the ground or when HDEV is not operating, a gray color slate or previously recorded video may be seen.

ISS HD Earth Viewing Experiment, ISS HD Earth Viewing Experiment NASAtelevision on USTREAM. Science

The High Definition Earth Viewing (HDEV) experiment aboard the ISS was activated April 30, 2014. It is mounted on the External Payload Facility of the European Space Agency’s Columbus module. This experiment includes several commercial HD video cameras aimed at the earth which are enclosed in a pressurized and temperature controlled housing. Video from these cameras is transmitted back to earth and also streamed live on this channel. While the experiment is operational, views will typically sequence though the different cameras. Between camera switches, a gray and then black color slate will briefly appear. Since the ISS is in darkness during part of each orbit, the images will be dark at those times. During periods of loss of signal with the ground or when HDEV is not operating, a gray color slate or previously recorded video may be seen.

May 08

designedconflictterritories:

"If there is a single word to describe Google, it is „absolute.” The Britannica defines absolutism as a system in which „the ruling power is not subject to regularized challenge or check by any other agency.”  In ordinary affairs, absolutism is a moral attitude in which values and principles are regarded as unchallengeable and universal. There is no relativism, context-dependence, or openness to change.
Six years ago I asked Eric Schmidt what corporate innovations Google was putting in place to ensure that its interests were aligned with its end users. Would it betray their trust?  Back then his answer stunned me. He and Google’s founders control the super-voting class B stock. This allows them, he explained, to make decisions without regard to short-term pressure from Wall Street. Of course, it also insulates them from every other kind of influence. There was no wrestling with the creation of an inclusive, trustworthy, and transparent governance system.  There was no struggle to institutionalize scrutiny and feedback.  Instead Schmidt’s answer was the quintessence of absolutism: „trust me; I know best.” At that moment I knew I was in the presence of something new and dangerous whose effects reached beyond narrow economic contests and into the heart of everyday life.”
Dark Google

designedconflictterritories:

"If there is a single word to describe Google, it is „absolute.” The Britannica defines absolutism as a system in which „the ruling power is not subject to regularized challenge or check by any other agency.”  In ordinary affairs, absolutism is a moral attitude in which values and principles are regarded as unchallengeable and universal. There is no relativism, context-dependence, or openness to change.

Six years ago I asked Eric Schmidt what corporate innovations Google was putting in place to ensure that its interests were aligned with its end users. Would it betray their trust?  Back then his answer stunned me. He and Google’s founders control the super-voting class B stock. This allows them, he explained, to make decisions without regard to short-term pressure from Wall Street. Of course, it also insulates them from every other kind of influence. There was no wrestling with the creation of an inclusive, trustworthy, and transparent governance system.  There was no struggle to institutionalize scrutiny and feedback.  Instead Schmidt’s answer was the quintessence of absolutism: „trust me; I know best.” At that moment I knew I was in the presence of something new and dangerous whose effects reached beyond narrow economic contests and into the heart of everyday life.”

Dark Google

May 07

By 1 p.m., Philip would leave the small yellow house in Silver Spring where he lived alone. He walked a half-block, waited for the No. 5 bus, took it to his job as a taxi dispatcher, returned home, cooked a late dinner, watched Charlie Rose and went to sleep. He never locked his front door and often left it wide open. Part was defiance. This is how I live. Part was warmth. Anyone is welcome.

One February night, someone came inside — someone Philip may have known — and beat him to death. The case remains Montgomery’s only unsolved killing this year.

Philip seemed to have no secrets and no enemies. And he left behind no electronic footprints — the text messages, e-mails, cellphone logs and social-media traffic that police routinely use these days as they seek out unknown quarrels and final movements.

“Those records usually help,” said Capt. Marcus Jones, commander of Montgomery County’s major-crimes division. “We don’t have any of that.”

For Philip’s family and friends, the case brings a terrible possibility: Could everything that made the lifelong bachelor so unique, so stubborn, so confounding, so wonderful — a life rooted in rejection of instant communication — be allowing his killer to get away with it?

” — Philip Welsh’s simple life hampers search for his killer - The Washington Post, via Will W.

You Love Pinterest. Find Out Why The Police Do, Too : All Tech Considered : NPR, via Will W.

Eight hours after posting on his department’s Facebook, Twitter — and the Pinterest page the agency launched in February — Stahler received information from not one but three people who helped identify the owner of the bracelet. That alone would be a good story — but when you learn that the jewelry was actually a mother’s keepsake engraved with the names and birth dates of her children and stolen during a residential burglary in 1983, well, it’s sweeter than all the red velvet cupcake recipes on Pinterest combined.

You Love Pinterest. Find Out Why The Police Do, Too : All Tech Considered : NPR, via Will W.

Eight hours after posting on his department’s Facebook, Twitter — and the Pinterest page the agency launched in February — Stahler received information from not one but three people who helped identify the owner of the bracelet. That alone would be a good story — but when you learn that the jewelry was actually a mother’s keepsake engraved with the names and birth dates of her children and stolen during a residential burglary in 1983, well, it’s sweeter than all the red velvet cupcake recipes on Pinterest combined.