For decades, the WELL has rung in the new year with a weeks-long public discussion led by Jon Lebkowsky and Bruce Sterling (2018, 2017, 2016, 2014, 2012, 2010, 2007, 2005, etc).
This year's contributors include Tiffany Lee Brown and James "New Aesthetic" Bridle (previously).
As you might expect from such an august panel, they're off to quite a start. Sterling has continued his tradition of declaring different countries to epitomize the year: this year, it's Ukraine, in "the EU-Russia shatterbelt where the elderly village grannies, the last ones too poor to flee, are harvesting their turnips while getting randomly pounded by mortar fire" ... it's "typical of our times. It's the patient zero for the actual trouble. The prospects for real peace there are very slim. The prospects of that kind of offshored Violence Lite appearing elsewhere, those are high."
Bridle, meanwhile, thinks the boasts of an upcoming "dark enlightenment" (or any other kind of enlightenment) are overblown, briefing instead for an upcoming entanglement: "weird, niche communities - antisocial media, distributed and federated services, truly decentralised ones as well as real urban anarchists - and they feel like different places to
talk about power and agency, and formulate strategy."
I do have one self-set task for the SoTW this year. What is
the forthcoming shape of the 2020s> Moore's Law is dead, there's
no Singularity, the fix is in tech oligarchs of (take a breath)
Google Apple Facebook Amazon Microsoft Baidu Alibaba Tencent Netflix
Samsung. They're in charge, but they're sitting on heaps of cash
with nothing much to do with it.
So what does post-disruption, post-Moore's Law,
tech-industry consolidation look and feel like? What kind of world
is that, what matters to people who live then? What happens when
there's no Next Big Thing, and you live in a New-Dark Hot-Peace?
What do people do with their time, their ambitions -- just tremble
at the Greenhouse thunderstorms? They're bound to be up to
State of the World 2019 [The WELL/Inkvue]
(Images: Andreas Dantz, CC-BY; Bruce Sterling)
I'm in the midst of couple of weeks' worth of lectures, public events and teaching, and you can catch me in Toronto (for Word on the Street, Seeding Utopias and Resisting Dystopias and 6 Degrees); Newry, ME (Maine Library Association) and Portland, ME (in conversation with James Patrick Kelly).
Octavia Butler (previously), the brilliant Afrofuturist, McArthur Genius Grant-winning science fiction writer, died far, far too soon, leaving behind a corpus of incredible, voraciously readable novels, and a community of writers who were inspired by her example.
EFF has just posted a job listing for a development director, seeking someone to "take charge of EFF's eleven-person Development Team in their efforts to raise over $13 million each year," starting late 2019 or early 2020.
There’s reading for pleasure, and then there’s reading for fuel; absorbing the great ideas in nonfiction books so you can apply them in your own life. In today’s hectic pace, it can be difficult to find the time to do that reading – especially for the entrepreneurs and professionals who can benefit the most from […]
Breaking into the big leagues as a project manager isn’t done overnight, but there are principles that anyone can learn, and they’re applicable to nearly any business. No matter what your field, if there are multiple teams working toward a common goal, you’re going to need a roadmap. The Project Management Professional Certification Training Suite […]
On the one hand, nostalgia is “a corruption of the historical impulse,” according to William Gibson. On the other hand, “Super Mario Bros.” will never not be cool. Luckily, there’s a way to satisfy that retro gaming while still keeping an eye on the future: The GameShell Kit. This thing is simultaneously the last handheld […]