critique   30491

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Sam Harris and the Myth of Perfectly Rational Thought | WIRED
Meanwhile, the closest thing to a cure may be for all of us to try to remember that natural selection has saddled us with these biases—and also to remember that, however hard we try, we’re probably not entirely escaping them. In this view, the biggest threat to America and to the world may be a simple lack of intellectual humility.
SamHarris  New  bias  atheism  tribalism  review  critique  Wired  2019 
4 hours ago by inspiral
Amazon Ruined Online Shopping - The Atlantic
But there’s a reason that we used to have shoe stores, hardware stores, grocery stores, bookstores, and all the rest: Those specialized retail spaces allow products, and the people with knowledge about them, to engage in specialized ways of finding, choosing, and purchasing them. On Amazon, everything gets treated the same. The problem with an Everything Store is that there’s no way to organize everything effectively. The result is basically a giant digital flea market. Amazon is so big, and so heterogenous, that the whole shopping experience is saturated with caprice and uncertainty. It’s not that Dash purchases alone might produce a result different from the one the buyer intended, but that every purchase might do so.
Amazon  ecommerce  review  critique  TheAtlantic  2019 
4 hours ago by inspiral
Interface wrapping method erasure – Jack Lindamood – Medium
The go language spec has no way to simultaneously add or augment behavior to an interface while maintaining commonly accepted best programming practices around minimal interface design. While not…
golang  interfaces  critique  toread 
15 hours ago by akozlovsky
Radical Technologies by Adam Greenfield review – luxury communism, anyone? | Books | The Guardian
What seem to be potentially anarchic, liberating technologies are highly vulnerable to capture and recuperation by existing power structures – just as were dissident pop-culture movements such as punk. Greenfield makes this point with particular force when discussing automated “smart contracts” and the technology of the blockchain, a kind of distributed ledger that underlies the bitcoin currency but could be used for many more things besides. “Despite the insurgent glamour that clings to it still,” he points out, “blockchain technology enables the realisation of some very long-standing desires on the part of very powerful institutions.” Much as he scorns the authoritarian uses of new technology, he also wants to warn progressives against technological utopianism. “Activists on the participatory left are just as easily captivated by technological hype as anyone else, especially when that hype is couched in superficially appealing language.”

Critical resistance to all these different colonial battalions is based on Greenfield’s observation, nicely repurposing the enemy’s terminology, that “reality is the one platform we all share”. If we want to avoid the pitiless libertarianism towards which all these developments seem to lean – unsurprisingly, because it is the predominant political ideology among the pathetically undereducated tech elite – then we need to insist on public critique and strategies of refusal. Radical Technologies itself is a landmark primer and spur to more informed and effective opposition.
***  review  technology  book  books  criticism  speedbird  trends  futurism  future  critique 
yesterday by gpe
Postmodernism Did Not Take Place: On Jordan Peterson’s 12 Rules for Life - Viewpoint Magazine
But that hasn’t stopped Peterson from airing his views all over North America and the internet, including fawning profiles in the Guardian and the Chronicle of Higher Education. In spite of his failed attempt to give his politics intellectual heft, it should be obvious to any reasonable person that his worldview is unfounded on its face. Consigning the right to determine someone’s gender to the eye of the beholder places excessive faith in the immediacy of perception and the universal equivalence of cultural norms, besides being obviously unkind. His blustery objection to the gender-neutral singular “they” puts Peterson himself in opposition to “Western civilization,” given that the construction appears throughout canonical English literature, including the works of William Shakespeare and Jane Austen. Peterson’s fixation on the chemical foundations of biological sex and measurements of cognitive intelligence is not pragmatic, but metaphysical, attempting to extract essential qualities from social behavior.

Peterson’s attempt to buttress these reactionary positions with readings of contemporary philosophy, now preserved for posterity in the pages of 12 Rules for Life, is not without precedent. But the tendency finds its most thorough realization in his zealotry. Peterson goes beyond Lilla, Chomsky, and Buchanan, arguing that what he calls “postmodern philosophy” is not merely a symptom of social unease, but its cause. By charging this poorly defined discourse of postmodernism with shaping contemporary society and bending the arc of history, he is doing precisely what he has accused his adversaries of doing: imposing a world of ideas upon the actually existing world, one which is more complex than he has the ability to grasp.
education  marxism  critique  review  postmodernism  philosophy  *** 
yesterday by gpe
Fonts and Leading on the Campaign Trail : Type Magazine
The application of Gotham has quickly become rote as well, with the logos formulaically dividing names with either contrasting weights or two colors. The font’s G is clearly attractive to many gubernatorial candidates. In more than one state, the race for that seat is so crowded with Gotham and near-Gothams the candidates start to blend together.

We hope to never see Gotham again after researching this article.
design  politics  logo  ***  critique  typography 
yesterday by gpe

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