nathanwentworth + tech   23

Failover Architectures: the Infrastructural Excess of the Data Centre Industry
In much the same way that hostile architecture design aims to control how public spaces are used, we are thus finding an increasingly infrastructured hostility toward offline practices [...]

The (mis)alignment between environmentalism and cloud services begins with the elimination of paper tickets and ends with the cashless economy.

With the cloud being increasingly lifestyled and infrastructured into a range of everyday social and economic practices and processes, data centres continue to grow in size. Far from a massive database in the sky, it is the planet’s surface and our everyday lives that are gradually being colonised by the cloud.
tech  data 
yesterday by nathanwentworth
My website is a shifting house next to a river of knowledge. What could yours be?
If a website has endless possibilities, and our identities, ideas, and dreams are created and expanded by them, then it’s instrumental that websites progress along with us. It’s especially pressing when forces continue to threaten the web and the internet at large. In an age of information overload and an increasingly commercialized web, artists of all types are the people to help. Artists can think expansively about what a website can be. Each artist should create their own space on the web, for a website is an individual act of collective ambition.
tech  human  good 
4 days ago by nathanwentworth
Words I never want to appear in my writing; or, staying friendly towards beginners – Matthew Cassinelli
Nothing with iOS automation or the technical details of how something works is easy, simple, or clear – at some point, it was explained to you. Not everyone knows, you don’t “just” do something because there’s a verb for that action, and many complex things are rarely obvious how to use at first.

I want to avoid alienating anyone who reads my writing or wants to learn more about how to use technology – the goal is to empower, not educate from above.
writing  tech 
15 days ago by nathanwentworth
How Tech Is Remaking Fashion in Its Image
The modernist architects that Scott Sternberg cites dreamt of designing perfect modular houses for all of humanity. The end result of that movement today is a fetishized niche of elite culture and a dwindling set of museumified public buildings. Case Study homes sell on the private market for millions of dollars. Tech-wear may not be as expensive just yet, but it certainly isn’t for everyone.
fashion  tech 
17 days ago by nathanwentworth
What Does The Amazon Echo Look Mean For Personal Style? - Racked
“Echo” is a good name for Amazon’s device because it creates an algorithmic feedback loop in which nothing original emerges.
good  tech  longreads  fashion  ai 
4 weeks ago by nathanwentworth
Strange Loops with Jonathan Zawada | Semi Permanent
I think we'll end up in 10-20 years time realising that had massive consequences. People won't be able to afford the ongoing expenditure of arts and culture. They’ll retire and won't be able to afford to pay for Spotify anymore and realise they don't have music in their lives. It would be depressing thing to think that we once had libraries and free access to stuff, or you could build your own libraries of music and books you owned until you died, but we changed as society so that when you stop working and can't afford it you don't get access to arts and culture anymore.
tech  art  interview 
4 weeks ago by nathanwentworth
txti - Fast web pages for everybody
Most of the world still does not have internet, but many websites from countries like the United States are big and complicated. This makes it hard for people with slow internet to use these sites. It is even harder for those people to put their own thoughts on the internet. With txti, anyone can use any device to share their story.
tech  one_thing_well  utility  webdev 
6 weeks ago by nathanwentworth
The thing that really kills me about the silicon valley hypercapitalist hell spiral is how many good, desirable ideas they're killing forever by implementing them so fucking horribly that when everyone wakes up from this daze we'll reject massive swaths o
The thing that really kills me about the silicon valley hypercapitalist hell spiral is how many good, desirable ideas they're killing forever by implementing them so fucking horribly that when everyone wakes up from this daze we'll reject massive swaths of concepts reflexively.
tech  good 
6 weeks ago by nathanwentworth
The Case Against Google
[...] if you love technology — if you always buy the latest gadgets and think scientific advances are powerful forces for good — then perhaps you ought to cheer on the antitrust prosecutors. Because there is no better method for keeping the marketplace constructive and creative than a legal system that intervenes whenever a company, no matter how beloved, grows so large as to blot out the sun.
tech  google 
february 2018 by nathanwentworth
Anti-capitalist human scale software (and why it matters)
Twitter launches features no one wants. Parse shuts down. Websites track us to an astonishing degree. Corporations close down open systems. They turn over our data to the government.

Software and services that are supposed to make life better are becoming unreliable and untrustworthy. It is increasingly clear that our interests, as software-using humans, are diverging from the interests of software companies.

I am coming to the conclusion that we simply can’t rely on corporations to produce and maintain great, reliable, human-centered software. The systems and incentives are in direct conflict.
capitalism  tech  webdev  good  human 
february 2018 by nathanwentworth
one day I will have a computer company and it will be perfect and here are the rules for that company, A PERPETUAL THREAD
1. The entire engineering team will never exceed 12 people, the total org size will never exceed 24 people. No product needs more people, and the communication overhead becomes ruinous.

2. Real-time chat will be unadorned, un-archived, non-searchable IRC. The limitations are actually assets. Onboarding includes IRC training. Slack is banned.

4. Issue trackers are for actionable bugs and feature requests only; GitHub issues are perfect. Project planning is a separate workflow and tool, URLs are excellent ways to link these two domains. JIRA and all Atlassian products are banned.
tech  good  human 
february 2018 by nathanwentworth
Standard for technological innovation by Wendell Berry
1. The new tool should be cheaper than the one it replaces.
2. It should be at least as small in scale as the one it replaces.
3. It should do work that is clearly and demonstrably better than the one it replaces.
4. It should use less energy than the one it replaces.
5. If possible, it should use some form of solar energy, such as that of the body.
6. It should be repairable by a person of ordinary intelligence, provided that they have the necessary tools.
7. It should be purchasable and repairable as near to home as possible.
8. It should come from a small, privately owned shop or store that will take it back for maintenance or repair.
9. It should not replace or disrupt anything good that already exists, and this includes family and community relationships.
good  human  tech 
february 2018 by nathanwentworth
Gunpei Yokoi - Lateral Thinking of Withered Technology
Yokoi said, "The Nintendo way of adapting technology is not to look for the state of the art but to utilize mature technology that can be mass-produced cheaply."
game  tech 
january 2018 by nathanwentworth
I’m harvesting credit card numbers and passwords from your site. Here’s how.
There’s a lot of smart, nasty people out there, and 400,000 npm packages. It seems to me that the odds are better than even that at least one of those packages has some malicious code in it, and that if it’s done well, you would never even know.
tech  security  javascript 
january 2018 by nathanwentworth
Computer latency: 1977-2017
Latency matters! For very simple tasks, people can perceive latencies down to 2 ms or less. Moreover, increasing latency is not only noticeable to users, it causes users to execute simple tasks less accurately.
tech 
january 2018 by nathanwentworth
Google Maps’s Moat
Google is creating data out of data.
data  google  statistics  tech 
december 2017 by nathanwentworth
The Real Danger To Civilization Isn’t AI. It’s Runaway Capitalism
There’s a saying, popularized by Fredric Jameson, that it’s easier to imagine the end of the world than to imagine the end of capitalism. It’s no surprise that Silicon Valley capitalists don’t want to think about capitalism ending. What’s unexpected is that the way they envision the world ending is through a form of unchecked capitalism, disguised as a superintelligent AI.
capitalism  tech  ai  good 
december 2017 by nathanwentworth
Something is wrong on the internet – James Bridle
What concerns me is not just the violence being done to children here, although that concerns me deeply. What concerns me is that this is just one aspect of a kind of infrastructural violence being done to all of us, all of the time, and we’re still struggling to find a way to even talk about it, to describe its mechanisms and its actions and its effects. As I said at the beginning of this essay: this is being done by people and by things and by a combination of things and people. Responsibility for its outcomes is impossible to assign but the damage is very, very real indeed.
longreads  good  tech  ai 
november 2017 by nathanwentworth
Keyboard latency
Most keyboards add enough latency to make the user experience noticeably worse, and keyboards that advertise speed aren’t necessarily faster. The two gaming keyboards we measured weren’t faster than non-gaming keyboards, and the fastest keyboard measured was a minimalist keyboard from Apple that’s marketed more on design than speed.
tech 
october 2017 by nathanwentworth
Anatomy of a Moral Panic
The real story of machine learning is not how it promotes home bomb-making, but that it's being deployed at scale with minimal ethical oversight, in the service of a business model that relies entirely on psychological manipulation and mass surveillance. The capacity to manipulate people at scale is being sold to the highest bidder, and has infected every aspect of civic life, including democratic elections and journalism.
good  news  tech  politics 
october 2017 by nathanwentworth

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