023 :: A rich palette of ecosystems

It’s frustrating that it costs you well over £10 to step out your front door in London. Hashtag 2018 I suppose.

Narrative

(Solarpunk) attempts to foster a socio-cultural environment which emphasises individual autonomy, consent, unity-in-diversity, with the free egalitarian distribution of power. It creates a multitude of spaces for indigenous sovereignties, reproductive justice, and radical queer politics.

Of course with these principles comes polyphony, one cannot speak for other solarpunks, only be in dialogue and occasional chorus with them.

– “Dirt Behind Our Ears” : On Solarpunk and the Need for New Futures

The metaphor of polyphony has come up a lot recently. Its a key theme in The Mushroom at the End of the World by Anna Tsing and also frequently used by another anthropologist Tim Ingold (Warning I’m a major fanboy). I’ve become more and more mindful of the need for less oppositional life ways in the last few months, and I think this is my refrain for the year.

This 2015 talk by Ingold on ‘The Correspondence of Lives’ is worth watching in full.

On this same note..

A friend asked on Tiny Twitter the other day:

1. Is the culture all wrong to start blogging again? Is it too experimental or contingent a form for career to survive intact?
2. Do I have a coherent enough perspective to bring to regular blogging above anger and reaction?
3. What would be the best platform to use

1. No. The culture is not wrong at all. 2. Yes everyone has interests. 3. WordPress obviously.

I think the resistance others feel to (re)starting a blog during the encouraging conversations I’ve been having is around fear of the Instant Rage Machine – Twitter. But things move slower in the blogosphere. True, you might say something that stir up the hornets nest and you get linked to and chewed out in 240chars. But really the only appropriate place for any criticism to come from and be responded to is in the long form. From/to other blog posts – healthy discussion.

As usual here’s my impression of the world from dipping the stacks this week:

  • Cryptocurrency markets collapsed. I wonder idly how many of the people who were cheering along will be doing the same during the upcoming currency crisis expected during 2018.
  • One of the Royals got a much better hair cut.
  • A newspaper I stopped reading ages ago has rebranded with lots of strange lines and UX choices.
  • The sexual lives of public figures is still being used as an attempt at control. Maybe they have *affects french accent*  an arrangement , they are both adults it’s none of our business.
  • Fed up with drug companies, hospitals in the USA have decided to start their own – this is extremely good.

The Ministry

I have been rushed off my feet this week which is a weird thing to say for someone without a full time job. I’ve lots of calls with various individuals around the world some at odd hours just for 30mins of someones time: but that is what “Real” social networking is all about I suppose. Every single person I have spoken to however has been so nice and kind.

This week I spent nearly three days helping an organisation hire a new technical person. It’s one of their first major hires. I find it gratifying to be able to step people through unfamiliar territory and offer help and support when people are unsure (the point person had never run an interview process before). Though at the same time always being mindful that it’s not my decision – it’s theirs.

I also had an expert interview for a strategy company on HR Tech and emerging trends in the sector. Which involved me going on a long rant about the surveillance workplace, data passporting, and the realities and dangers of relying too heavily on APIS linking software purchased to meet immediate business needs in startups. I also had an absolutely amazing long conversation with Ruth from Furtherfield.org in Carnaby Street.

I also submitted at the last minute talk about Solarpunk to a major conference in Berlin – see the quote above.

Reading

I finished both The Hidden Half of Nature and A Monk’s Guide to a Clean House and Mind this week.

I have now read all of David Montgomery’s books with the completion of this one. And quite frankly recommend all of them. The Hidden Half of Nature is also co-authored by his wife Anne Biklé, a biologist and environmental planner.

Its a fascinating romp tough soil science, the history of microbiological studies and then smoothly segues in to gut bacteria and the human microbiome and takes a brief look at the discoveries this century could possibly bring now that the ‘Kill them all’ knee jerk reaction of antibiotic use is being reassessed. The sections on Crohn’s Disease and inflammation was of great interest to me (obviously). If you have read and enjoyed I Contain Multitudes by Ed Yong then this is a must read as its a gateway book to soil science.

A Monk’s Guide to a Clean House and Mind is a delightful short book (I read it over two evenings) full of pithy zen sayings and practical advice. I’ve taken two things away from the book. The first i’ve instituted a ‘conscious’ face washing ritual every morning (even if I immediately get in the shower) and i’m already finding the mental space that it opens up is providing returns. The other is that I looked up in my flat.. and we really need to dust/clean the light fixtures.

I’ve started reading Altered Carbon (again) perhaps for the 5th? time in my life. I’d like to get though it before the TV show starts on Netflix in Febuary. I’m also finishing up a book called The Margate Tales which has been half read on my night stand now for ages. It’s a well researched collection that attempts to cover all the references to Margate in print pre-railway age. There are some fantastic quotes!

A friend pressed Star Ark: A Living, Self-Sustaining Spaceship by Rachel Armstrong into my hands last night – so i think that’ll be up next. But Hyperion by Dan Simmons also arrived in my life second hand for 50p this week. We’ll see.

Music

Not much time for new tunes this week. But we’ve been listening to an old household favourite, it hasn’t left the turntable in a week.

imag2799.jpg

Remember kids:

large.jpg

Advertisements

022 :: Minister of My Own Labor

It’s been a strange week thats for sure but I’m not going to talk about that here.

Narrative

I’m now twelve days into my new social media diet. The essay “Avoid News, Towards a Healthy News Diet” by Rolf Dobelli has been a big influence on me since I read it back in 2012/13 ish.

We are so well informed and yet we know so little. Why?

We are in this sad condition because 200 years ago we invented a toxic form of knowledge called news. The time has come to recognize the detrimental effects that news has on individuals and societies, and to take the necessary steps to shield us from its dangers.

“Avoid News, Towards a Healthy News Diet” – Dobelli

I return to it every now and again when everything is getting a bit much on the socials. So much so, that when I was sorting out the huge pile of papers on / under / around my desk before Christmas I found THREE copies of it printed out in various stacks & states of decay. I suppose that says it all.

In experiments in disconnecting last year, I spent two separate months ‘Off’ social media, cold turkey. The main problem i experienced was I missed too many DM’s and notifications about people being in town etc. Not being on Facebook or Whatsapp (and I jealously guard my phone number / personal email) these people and some friends were just ignored – So that didn’t work out. This month i’ve been checking my DM’s and notifications 2-3 times a day and just do an in-depth read in the mornings before I get up (but i may replace this with reading). It’s been working well so far for me and I feel a lot better for it.

Some bullet points on observations from me feed this week

  • Remainers have literally invented team follow back 10 years after it turned out to be a disastrous echo chamber the first time around – it’s an echo chamber they are after I suppose.
  • The royals slow manoeuvrings continue  – its so interesting to watch
  • The US is going quiet on Russia hacking and swivel eyed collusion finger pointing over the election – I suspect because it’s run out of steam
  • The US still has bad book cover design
  • “Doing a journalist” is something that happens to people I suppose.

The Ministry

I’ve been working on a lot of work related things this week tying to get myself in a position to earn some income this year – mostly websites.

I haven’t touched any kind of self hosted WordPress system in at least 7 years and this week I have been working on three simultaneously. I’m about 1/3 thought the total amount of work i need to get done so far and next week should be a big sprint. But webdesign even within WordPress has moved on a lot since I last dusted off nascent web design skills and the learning curve has been quite steep. It also occurs to me that I should finish reading the book recommended to me by Sjef – The Elements of Content Strategy by Erin Kissane before I write any copy for the bigger websites. I’ll post a review when I’m done reading it, but I’m thinking i might need to engage/pay a copy editor to help me out once the first draft is written.

I did finish one website this week though.

After Flavours.me died during the summer last year, my personal website had been a 404 (which Is the perfect metaphor for last year in general). So in an effort to decentralise, I now have a quick single page with minimal information about me up and running. I cant imagine it’ll change anytime soon unless I get some new headshots in the spring and then I’ll change the GIF – I might randomise it.

Another web related task this week was updating the solarpunks tumblr to become solarpunks.net ‘all very simple’ I hear you say, *unless* you also want to host wordpress on a subdomain. It took me nearly two days of on and off DNS fuckery to sort it out, with a lot of help from my hosting provider. I’m modifying a custom theme next week probably . It’ll be the first theme update since the tumblr started in 2012.

Reading

In addition to the content book, I started reading The Hidden Half of Nature which continues my Soil science binge from last year which I’m about 1/3 of the way though already and, I’m about 1/2 though A Monk’s Guide to a Clean House and Mind  – a book about buddhist house keeping.

Music

I’m trying to listen to more music this year too.

So I’m going to write about that it here to. Last year was full of some fantastic stuff, mostly listened to in between financial forecasting, salesforce administration, employee utilisation reporting and data pack wrangling at my former place of employment.

This week I’ve been listening to the new Charlie XCX album – Pop 2 which is really good. I mentioned to an acquaintance the other day that it’s the first PC Music produced album that seems to go beyond their typical ‘Production Shtick’. I presume this is Charlie XCX’s influence..

Have a good week and remember:

IMG_20180101_120906.jpg

021 :: I used to bother to post things here

I’m aware that I lament almost every time I bother to login to wordpress to post something… I used to write a round up of all the things that happened during the previous year but stopped in jan 2016.

That was back even when a blog with a total of 21 posts (including this one) would get thousands of views because of strong social ties and network effects. Not so much anymore – But as I will explain, I’m going to be writing a little something here more often. Writing more in general really. If you find this blog. Let me know on twitter here.

2017: unrelated + unordered observations

2017 was a fucking horrible year for me. A year totally consumed by stress, health problems and work. The former two things all fell out from the later.

Quitting my job at the startup I’d been working at for the previous two years was possibly one of the best decisions i have ever made in my life. When i finally quit I was suffering from Hypertensive stress: causing anxiety in social situations, muscle locking in my legs that left me in agony at night and unable to walk properly, I was grinding my teeth – it also began affecting my Crohn’s Disease. I blew up relationships with friends and generally was an unbearable human being to be around – even myself. I should have quit sooner, and I should admit and publicly state again to my friends, family and my partner that all told me to do so well in advance of actually pulling the trigger I’m so sorry i didn’t do it sooner.

My partner and I went to Portugal for a spa holiday the week after I left work and a lot of the stress immediately melted away in the Sun. Pithy idioms like ‘a weight of your shoulders’ really contain truth once you experience them in effect.

IMAG2146-EFFECTS

I’m still suffering from anxiety and really don’t like the idea of busy social situations. In fact last week, I was dreading going for drinks with some of my oldest and closest friends on Christmas Eve whilst back at my hometown. As usual though, when I actually got there it was 100% fine and i was honest and talked to them about how my prior concerns before i walked down the seafront had now melted away, it turns out several friends also had had anxiety about going out too – It seems that it’s a low level collective emotion, almost all of it driven by over work and guilt at not having time for socialising. The whole work thing was all back in September with at least a six month build up and I haven’t really done anything in the four months since except sit at home and slowly try to pull different bits of myself back together…

2017 was the year that twitter went to 240 characters – I like it. It’s made for a much clearer space. Slightly more room for nuance – but only just. There is however still no time and space allowed to be convinced under the logic of the modern social network. You have to have a position immediately to keep the whole machine running. Long threads of 240 characters however are annoying and are better served by other mediums/platforms. 1 tweet is a microblog. A chain of ten 240 character tweets is just a short blog write it somewhere else. I commented a while back on twitter that we should all go back to writing blogs and I think this is an extremely good idea Warren Ellis made a comment in his newsletter about that and added “It would be fucking funny to see everyone go back to Tumblr and dance in the ruins as the sun went down.”. This is a good place to start as i mean to go on in 2018.

I made a resolution in Jan of 2017 to write more. At least 500 words a day / At least 5 days a week for the entire year. With a few exceptions i managed it. In addition I also won nanowrimo again. It was quite a lot of words put down into a word document. None of it is likely to ever see the light of day, but it did provide me some discipline during the worst parts of the year, a space to vent, and has been been good practice which was it’s intention. I really like the 500-1500 word writing length and for perhaps the first time in my life i enjoy writing. As a result i got to join the rejection club, an upshot of all this writing was i submitted a short story to a solarpunk anthology. The editor gave me some fantastic feedback and i hope to write more this year maybe one of ‘em might even be accepted ¯\_(ツ)_/¯

2017 was also the year we moved again. After three years in a cramped and damp basement flat we now have a wonderful ground floor flat with a garden. I’m hoping to make the most of it in 2018. With work stress last year the idea of doing anything beyond a little weeding and buying some garden furniture was a write off. This year i think we’ll be planting a edible container garden plated in polycultures. We also have a south facing balcony so i’m excited for plenty of tomatoes in the summer.

IMAG1831.jpg

Our garden is the back one with two apple trees in need of some TLC

I read A LOT. The full list of completed books is on my Goodreads. I also consumed more academic papers in the last 18 months than at any other point in my life perhaps since university. I’ve changed my mind about how many things truly work in the world, and that has had an impact on how i see it. I’ve been blown away by amazing thinkers in fields like ethnobotany, anthropology and straight up biology (soil science is amazing) even economic thinkers. I might write about a few of these someday. I am also extremely grateful to Gordon White for inventing the term ‘The Anthropogreen’ and for being introduced to the work of Ethan Roland Soloviev and his 8 Forms of Capital.

Screen Shot 2017-12-24 at 18.56.13.png

On the Solarpunk front, the Tumblr I have run with Adam Flynn for the last few years has doubled its followers in 2017 and interest in the genre is accelerating all over the web. The decentralised P2P social network scuttlebutt community has embraced the term and some fantastic writing has been coming from them. I wanted to start a solarpunk podcast in 2017 but 2018 will be the year that this actually happens. Mainly it’s going to be an excuse for me to talk to amazing people about the amazing work they are doing. Do watch this space because it IS coming. I also pulled together the solarpunk reference guide this year which was more work than i was expecting but im glad i’ve done it and it’s uptodate. there are some page improvements that i’ll be making to it by hacking mediums HTML.

2018 is the year i need to find an income. After the last 4 months of sitting at home reading, writing and watching a lot of star trek I’m not sure exactly how it’s all going to work out but i need to do so as my position as someone who is privileged to be able to take a few months of work can’t last forever…

But as a first step – I’m starting a company called The Ruderal

“A Ruderal species is a plant species that is first to colonise disturbed lands”

Screen Shot 2018-01-02 at 15.59.29.png

I’m not sure exactly what form the company will take, but I’m envisioning something like the a DIY record label/zine publisher I ran as a teenager. Housing and storing the things I’m putting energy and effort into. Things like the solarpunk podcast i’m starting, #stacktivism, potentially a rebooted thought menu of some kind, and any consulting / strategy work and speaking (which I have a number of engagements coming up).

Here’s a preview of that:

Screen Shot 2018-01-02 at 16.06.05.png

I am hugely grateful to all the friends, family and people who supported me in 2017.

I hope 2018 treats you well.

020 :: 10 In The Wind

A brief note over here to prove I’m alive.

Had some health problems recently but nothing major. The last few months in between waking up, commuting, working, commuting and sleeping, I’ve been toying with another visual essay that will be in a similar style to Colonising the Clouds.

It’s called ‘Seeing Through The Debris’ and will be on The Breakaway Civilisation, Conspiracies and how to parse them. I posted some WIP on tumblr at the weekend. Teh full thing should be out fairly soon. But in the mean time an except is embedded below:

P.S I might start blogging a bit more in short bursts here. No one reads blogs anymore anyway.

019 :: #TTW16 abstract

PHEW. So for the second time in 2 years I just submitted my extract/talk proposal to the theorizingtheweb conference that takes place in April in New York . The Abstract is reproduced in full below. Even if I am unsuccessful, the same as I said 2 years ago I think the piece is a useful early 2016 ‘flag in the ground’ to orient my self around this year. This is the direction a lot of my thinking and speaking will headed this year. If you have any comments or the subject interests you please do get in touch on twitter, leave a comment on here, or mail me via the contact form on my homepage:

It really should be seen as a continuation from my previous talk at #TTW14 and a continuation of my thinking on/in this space – I’m quite open about it building on my previous talk in my abstract. The title alone should be a hint LOL.

Colonising the Clouds Pt2

Citizenship of the stack (or the art of 21st C Prussian Forestry ) 

In my previous TTW presentation I explored the notion of ‘Infrastructure Territory’ and the way institutions, corporations and nationstates approach digital dualism. I ended by pointing to the emerging condition of a new geopolitics that can only exist by presupposing a digital dualism where geopolitical actor’s territory can exist in informational space. One which ignores the reality of discrete and distinct sheds of computers distributed across multiple global jurisdictions in physical space, owned by entities incorporated under existing national law:

“The geopolitics of the Cloud, as an example, it is partially defined by the ‘accidental’ de-lamination of traditional Westphalian geographies of sovereignty through the realization of other topologies” – Benjamin Bratton UCSD

This talk will build on my former argument and recap with sightings of this delamination in progress: the ‘Ghost in a Shell Corporation’ how “Uber filed a motion to dismiss a lawsuit…claiming it exists only in cyberspace”, how ISIS’s approach to sovereignty and geographic borders mirrors the concept of super jurisdiction, Facebook’s neo-colonial efforts to roll out internet.org, Estonia’s e-residency program. These new networks of trust are causing friction between existing geographies of sovereignty at the geospatial level and potentially giving rise to the notion of a ‘Citizen User’ at the individual level.

In the time provided I will attempt to take the audience through a fast paced argument that reframes the ‘Algorithmic Society’ – the dominant ‘modus ponens’ in recent artistic and academic discourse – towards the idea of a ‘Database Society’ and the very broken reality of database bureaucracy and information brokerage in complex institutions.

In order to explore the condition of user-citizenship we will need to examine how institutions ‘see’ with a brief overview of the different types of institutional identity: EG: Physical body, Bureaucratic Record, Sets of attributes or score, Identity is a username/password or proof of memory, and Potential identities.

A commonality between Stacks and States (or any complex institution) not mentioned previously in pt1 is the idea of ‘value’ or ‘productivity metrics. The connection between citizen, user and value are closely related. Resulting in the idea of a ‘productivity potential’ : At the Nation State level it manifests as GDP or GDP Per capita. In the organisation as key performance indicators (KPI’s) and are hangovers of 20th century scientific management.

This kind of identity assignment comes from very early nation state concepts of the surname as well as 19C ideas of productivity and scientific land management. The famous failures of Prussian forestry are very real. We should consider a way of updating this story and read the impact of German Forestry as a shift to the rack-mounted landscape. In this database society we should place ourselves in the midst of  this slow motion forest die off. Increasingly citizens, employees and users don’t want to behave in ways that companies vision of them requires – these motivations, behaviors and desires are illegible to an institution. I will also be talking about Ents…

-0-

Anyway, thats it. If i’m unsuccessful then thats totally ok, I’m going to be be writing on this at some point anyway, and as a bonus means i have a talk in my back pocket which is useful. If you want me to talk about this at a thing you’re doing let me know.

 

018 :: “I have learned that to be with those I like is enough” ― Walt Whitman

It’s been nearly a year since i posted here and the funny thing is the last post #017 was literally being a round up for 2014.

I haven’t ever been one for blogging because in part my dyslexia but also my general hatred of writing. I started this blog years ago with the intention of writing once a week. That lasted about 3 weeks… and then it turned into a place to dump the occasional post of things i’ve been up too. One of the main problems is that i haven’t ever figured out what this space is ‘for’ web diary it shouldn’t be.

What are Blogs for? Brings me onto a major current of discussion that has been running in back channels and freely over beers this year. That discussion of the state of social media and, feelings towards it and how does one engage with it.

In 2015: Some friends have gone ‘write only’, others read only, Some have repurposed seizable personal accounts towards publishing ventures and others have gone full sekret account and time warped back to 2008 twitter. I’ve been toying with the idea of moving over to tumblr and publishing everything out to twitter ‘write only’ style too but i’m still not sure.

Warren Ellis posted ‘Throwing Yourself Down A Memory Hole’  over at morning.computer in early December:

I’m tempted to delete every tweet I’ve ever posted.  Leaving the account live, but scrubbing it of life. On the one hand, that is doing violence to the public record.  But that is egotistical.  I remember stories of people executing “mass scribbles” on the Well, back in prehistoric times, and people apparently being terribly upset about it. But the net was very small back then. On the other hand, you see — who’s going to care? When I got on the web, there were still jokes about being able to read to the end of it.  Now it’s massive and loud and sprawling and the absence of any one person’s social media posts is less than meaningless to the public record.  There are already people who use services to delete their own tweets after a week. Self-destructing conversational atoms. Treating the whole thing with the ephemerality it probably deserves.

We all had a lot to say about the idea of a global conversation, but it turned out that most of us were at the back, muttering to ourselves, or, on occasion, finding ourselves talking to a chair.

Today I remain undecided.  How about you?

Ahmet A. Sabancı (@ahmetasabanci) followed up with a thoughtful response

RE: THROWING YOURSELF DOWN A MEMORY HOLE by @warrenellis

I was trying to find a way to build myself a “calmer internet” for some time, because of the very similar reasons. Most of the things we call internet today is a total mess and they’re doing everything possible to turn these into something more useless. While we need more stuff to curate the information flowing, we get more stuff makes all these more impossible to control. Because, let’s make it clear, advertisers wants it that way.

What should we do now? When I’ve started using internet, what I fall in love with it was conversation and the limitless information I can consume whenever I want, however I want. But we somehow let this controlled by Google, Facebook, Twitter and others. While they did a lot good at first, they’re now letting the control to the advertisers and governments. And that’s why I can’t leave my blog and other sites I’ve build. I prefer having this conversation from blog to blog and at the comments instead of Twitter. I know that it won’t reach a lot of people but same goes for tweets and Facebook posts too. And I prefer writing a blog post instead of 20-of-234 style Twitter rants.

Others this year have written or spoke on podcasts about using social media more ephemerally, (you should all listen to http://mindfulcyborgs.com/ if you arn’t already) and i’m inclined to agree.

Gordon (runesoup.com) also wrote this month:

In the between space of what blogs were and what they are becoming -in person discussion, comments, social posts, actual blog posts and lived personal experience

All this combined makes me think that 2016 should be devoted to more in person conversations, more dinners, attending more meetups & days spent talking and hanging out with friends in person. As for my own approach to social media that is TBD, maybe i’ll just try and blog more, tweet less and generally spend less time there.

I met with Ben in early Dec on a Sunday for brunch. The day generated 8-10 pages of notes, we drank beers and i paid well over the odds for Egg and Soldiers. However it was one my favourite days in the latter half of this year. Other memorable things that have happened this winter have included: A burger disaster in a hawaiian restaurant with Jay Owens, and having lunch with communist friends in between discussing the state of the Mainstream media’s coverage of the Corbyn leadership and screwing around an Occulus.

With that in mind looking back on the last 12 or so months it has been a less eventual in terms of ‘Stuff’ and more eventual in terms of ‘life’. So instead of posting general links to things i’ve written or content i’ve produced this year i thought i might write some brief notes month by month that stick out in my memory for 2015.  This list is an non exhaustive list obviously [EDIT: Looks like a lot of the things i mentioned are IRL interactions so 2016 might just be the year of ‘experience’]

Jan

Talk on Egregore’s, consciousness, and ‘corporations as people’ at a birthday unconference and either alienated or angered the entire audience which was pretty awesome. Went to the Whitechapel bell foundry with my friend Arthur.

IMG_20150125_124215

Whitechapel Bell Foundry

Feb

Transmediale was fun if exhausting, i ran a workshop with Tobias Revell and Erica Scourti on the subject of ‘Mobilizing Infrastucure Space’  – the notes from the workshop can be found towards the end of this archived hack pad here. Missed Eve’s birthday.

16417351835_98961d3186_z

Tired and Hungover – Photo by @mjays

Zed Books ‘The Coming Insurrection in Publishing: self-management, digital networks and social change’It was a good event and i enjoyed the conversations afterward.

March

Marrakech festival of magic with Eve, cold and rain, week long project management accelerator – refreshing to attend a thing on project management and gantt charts weren’t mentioned once.

20150323_111440-EFFECTS

Our Riad – Google ‘Autoawesomed’

April

Friends Birthdays and Friends Weddings, Spring days and walks along the Thames. Events felt like a struggle to attend but i’m glad i did once i got there, the company of good friends.

May

Recruiter contacted me about a seeing a man about a dog. Played a SHIT LOAD of Wasteland 2, Drinks in the sun by the river.

June

More birthdays, A boozy night out in soho with mailing list co-conspirators meeting irl for the first time. Jack Parsons day, and the INFRA_SPECTION residency cycle at the white building coming to an end. Ending with the great ‘INFRA_SPECTION – A [ Mini ] Summit, more phone calls and interviews about that dog, Freud’s house adventure with Eve.

IMAG0148

I said ‘Who’s House?!!’

July

Jupiter return ended, my 30th birthday, Accepted a job offer, drinking with magicians. I remember the sun setting over london from the garden on the roof of the Google / King Studios St Giles building. All change pls.

IMAG0300

Selfie Sticks Are Amazing

August

Unemployment, adventures in Oxford with Eve, stayed in a prison, daily pub garden ‘meetings’ with other interstitially employed friends, folk festival ciders with old friends and Eve.

IMAG0334

Folk Folk

September

Long Progress bar in Brighton . Boozy evenings with musicians & internet folk, Crashing on Voss/Goatleys couch. A long day with DiakronNew job began with a bonus embarrassing interview.

October

Byzantine mosaics in Venice with Eve and her Fam, more birthdays, Q4 kick off, hard work.

IMAG0638

Santa Maria e San Donato, Murano, Venice

November

More hard work, went full wyrdo, comics signings, weird day at the dentist, more birthdays, noro virus courtesy of Eve, autumn fog on the Thames path.

IMAG0733

Surbiton -> Kingston Thames Path

Dec

Social calendar apocalypse, office parties, friends from out of town, finished all the hard work, realised i need to learn the basics of accounting, introspection and reflection

-0-

This year has also been the year of newsletters, in the spirit of this post you can probably tell i have enjoyed the return to the long form, it’s a more personal form of communication from friends and acquaintances and internet strangers. The list below is stolen from Damien Williams’ (@wolven) Technoccult’s round up that i have added to, to make up my current subscription list:

And a few others I have either forgotten or aren’t for the public web.

You got a newsletter? Let me know 

New Beginnings 2016

  • New year’s resolutions include sorting out: Thought Menu, QQuietly, Family of Giants
  • Finishing both the looooong writing projects i’ve been working on half assedly in 2015
  • Fix my bike (it is STILL very poorly after having bits wrenched/stolen from it in August) and get riding again
  • Finish the Audio project i’ve been working on
  • Play a gig with my the new band
  • Read the massive pile of books i didn’t read in 2016
  • Blog more

So 2016 looks like a year spent finishing up all the things i didn’t do in 2015. That’s ok, it makes it all the more achievable…..

017 :: Colonising the Clouds + Other stuff I forgot to post about in 2014

:: Colonising the Clouds ::

Last summer i posted a visual essay on Medium of Slides and Notes from a presentation given at Theorising the Web #TTW14 NYC April 2014 with updated/expanded comments. I really like the possibility that beautiful html storytelling can/could afford – A few people however have said that they couldn’t get on with all the ‘scrolley’ but ah well. Maybe i’ll sort it out and post it to tumblr or something.

The piece was later put on a reading list for a university of new south wales MA course (which was something i never thought would happen) and i have subsequently had the opportunity to read quite a few thoughtful and critical response to it.

You can read the abstract/submission for this talk previously posted on this blog here. I have also embedded a video of the full panel and the Q&A from #TTW14 at the bottom of the medium post if you prefer.

Screen Shot 2014-05-07 at 20.05.55

 :: (DIS)ASSEMBLING #STACKTIVISM – A SALON :: 

In october i was part of a salon during frieze week at the Goethe-Institute presented in conjunction with the whitebuilding called (DIS)ASSEMBLING #STACKTIVISM – A SALON alongsideKari Altmann (Artist in Residence at The White Building)Paul Raven (University of Sheffield)Julieta Aranda (E-Flux)

There was a reading list issued beforehand. So the discussion was quite sprawling and far reaching. I had a great time.

Video of the evening below (sorry cant figure out how to center it)

:: Thought Menu ::

TTM #11 happened in mid-september after a long hiatus do to all four of us being super busy. We have big plans for 2015 though.

:: Other Stuff :: 

Other news for 2014 i was made a fellow at the RSA in 2014 and also a researcher on ‘corporate meta-intelligences’ at the institute-of-atemporal-studies which was nice

I moved house

Started a DIY record + publishing label with some punks from margate

Started a slow burn audio project that i hope to come to fruition soon in 2015

Started a new job

:: Whats next? :: 

Need to hit 10000 words of a writing project I’ve been asked to work on by end of april. If un successful expect it to be strip mined for essays here and there

Berlin later this month (jan 15) for transmediale.de to run a workshop on Mobilising Infrastructure Space

Beyond that: i’m hoping to make it to Manchester for @futureeverything – specifically the haunted machines conference (details TBA)

Have a half written piece based on a talk i gave in 2014 about compression, the loudness war & instagram filters