For our continuing "Boing Boing on GOOD" series, I wrote a brief essay about the possible psychological dark sides of Twitter, Flickr, and lifecasting that may go beyond amplified narcissism. Are the Truman Syndrome and Abraham Biggs's live suicide on Justin.tv canaries in the coalmine? From my article, titled "All the Web's A Stage" (above artwork by Imaginary Foundation):
In 1968, Andy Warhol famously forecasted, “In the future, everyone will be… famous for 15 minutes.” Of course, he was right. Personal computers and the Web have democratized the tools of media so that most anyone can create and distribute their own content without the need for deep-pocketed middlemen. Can’t get on TV? Start your own network. Create your own reality TV show starring you. Flickr already abounds with users who unabashedly post steady streams of self-portraits shot with phonecams held at arm’s length, and fans who praise them. And at microblogging hub Twitter, there are thousands of people delighted to share what they’re eating for dinner or that they’re stuck in traffic, and many thousands more who seem to care.
At Institute for the Future, where I’m a researcher, we’ve been exploring the idea that “everyone will be a channel,” and how that experience might inform and change the way we relate to each other, and ourselves...
This gadget does exactly as promised: it looks like a thumbdrive (sort of) and fries the circuitry of any computer it’s plugged into. It’s made from camera flash parts, is charged with a standard AA battery, and delivers a 300V zap of DC destruction to the port for all your USB-murdering needs. Note that this […]
The Cobham catalog, exposed by The Intercept, features countless pages of surveillance gadgets sold to U.S. police to spy on American citizens: tiny black boxes with a big interest in you. In the creepily bland feature lists and nerdy product names is a whisper of a dark future; perhaps darker than anyone can imagine.
This image depicts the most commonly-found stylesheet colors on the web’s top sites—Paul Hebert did an amazing amount of analysis and this is just one of the intriguing visualizations he came up with. Most of these are obvious staples, especially HTML red and blue, though it’s interesting how far the blue “cluster” is from the […]
Holiday shopping is in full swing, and the Striiv Touch is one of the best gift ideas I’ve landed on. Its simple design works for females and males, and its wide range of features makes it suitable for even the non-fitness enthusiasts in your life.Unlike traditional fitness trackers, the Striiv Touch also acts as a smartwatch. It […]
The Pocket Tripod PRO had massive Kickstarter success in 2013, raising almost $85,000 in a single month. But this isn’t just another case of pre-release product hype. This ingenious little device folds out from a credit-card-shaped plastic slab into a sturdy stand with a surprisingly wide range of motion. In portrait orientation, your phone slides […]
Loot Crate is a totally different kind of subscription service that mails subscribers monthly boxes filled with curated geek, pop culture, and gamer paraphernalia. Its cult following awaits a box every month filled with everything from bobble heads to T-shirts to special edition collectibles. But nothing gets Loot Crate fans as excited as the limited […]