Virtual Horizons & Futurology for 2021: Žižek on The Great Reset

With much ballyhoo and bellyaching about the absurdly miserable year of 2020, our collective calendars have finally turned to 2021. The year-end was marked by effusive declarations of relief and hope, even though these admissions of optimism were often tinged with cynical self-awareness reflecting the continuing complexities of our current moment (i.e. coronavirus vaccines are … Continue reading Virtual Horizons & Futurology for 2021: Žižek on The Great Reset

Hiroki Azuma’s General Will 2.0 and Urban Planning

The Japanese cultural critic Hiroki Azuma has contributed some of the most inventive contemporary propositions for the use of information and communication technologies for democratic practice. In General Will 2.0 (2014), Azuma argues that democratic ideals should be “updated on the basis of the realities of information society” (p. iii). Simply stated, the proliferation of … Continue reading Hiroki Azuma’s General Will 2.0 and Urban Planning

The Soul in Cyberpunk: Consciousness, Higher Selves, and the Tarot of 2077

“The tarot will teach you how to create a soul.” Jodorowsky, The Holy Mountain Cyberpunk 2077 released last week, and like so many others I’ve been exploring the game (to the best of my ability considering the performance issues on my console hardware...but that’s currently being discussed ad nauseum across the Internet, and I am … Continue reading The Soul in Cyberpunk: Consciousness, Higher Selves, and the Tarot of 2077

MISC Monday: MLK media literacy; social media stress; the attention economy, and more

Almetria Vaba of PBS Learning Media has posted a collection of resources for exploring media literacy through the legacy of Dr. Martin Luther King, jr.: Examine the life and legacy of Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. and the Civil Rights Movement with hundreds of PBS LearningMedia resources.  Here is a sampling of resources from the … Continue reading MISC Monday: MLK media literacy; social media stress; the attention economy, and more

Smart Cities: India’s initiative; technologized transport; democratic dilemmas and dystopian dangers

Smart cities continue to be a hot topic for urban designers and commentators, even as the very definition of the term is debated. Kieron Monks at CNN recently addressed this in an article on the next generation of smart cities: The urban planning equivalent of a Rorschach test, a "Smart City" can be taken to … Continue reading Smart Cities: India’s initiative; technologized transport; democratic dilemmas and dystopian dangers

Mind-controlled exoskeleton opens World Cup; AI will crash the stock market; Cortana’s personality

The 2014 World Cup kicked off yesterday with a futuristic twist on the opening ceremonies. A paraplegic kicked a soccer ball using an exoskeleton designed by the Walk Again Project: The exoskeleton -- a system comprising a helmet implanted with a microchip that sticks out from the underside; a T-shirt loaded with sensors; metal leg … Continue reading Mind-controlled exoskeleton opens World Cup; AI will crash the stock market; Cortana’s personality

Guns with Google Glass, city of driverless cars, Kurzweil on hybrid thinking

Tech companies and weapons manufacturers are exploring the crossover potential for firearms and wearable technology devices like Google Glass. Brian Anderson at Motherboard reported Austin tech startup TrackingPoint's foray into this inevitable extension of augmented reality applications and posted the company's concept video: "When paired with wearable technology, PGFs can provide unprecedented benefits to shooters, such as the … Continue reading Guns with Google Glass, city of driverless cars, Kurzweil on hybrid thinking

Inside Korea’s gaming culture, virtual worlds and economic modeling, Hollywood’s Summer of Doom continues, and more

I've long been fascinated by the gaming culture in South Korea, and Tom Massey has written a great feature piece for Eurogamer titled Seoul Caliber: Inside Korea's Gaming Culture. From this westerner's perspective, having never visited Korea, the article reads almost more like cyberpunk fiction than games journalism: Not quite as ubiquitous, but still extremely common, are PC Bangs: … Continue reading Inside Korea’s gaming culture, virtual worlds and economic modeling, Hollywood’s Summer of Doom continues, and more

Hacker’s death, wearable tech, and some Cyberpunk

White hat hacker Barnaby Jack was found dead in San Francisco this week; he was 35 years old. From the Reuters article on his death: His genius was finding bugs in the tiny computers embedded in equipment, such as medical devices and cash machines. He often received standing ovations at conferences for his creativity and … Continue reading Hacker’s death, wearable tech, and some Cyberpunk

Mice memory implants, augmented reality trends, predictive policing, more

In case you haven't already heard, scientists have implanted false memories into the brains of mice. Scientists have created a false memory in mice by manipulating neurons that bear the memory of a place. The work further demonstrates just how unreliable memory can be. It also lays new ground for understanding the cell behavior and … Continue reading Mice memory implants, augmented reality trends, predictive policing, more