Talking with the Left Field podcast about Sidewalk Labs's plan to build a surveilling "smart city" in Toronto

We've been closely following the plan by Google sister company Sidewalk Labs to build a surveilling "smart city" in Toronto; last week, I sat down with the Out of Left Field podcast (MP3) to discuss what's going on with Sidewalk Labs, how it fits into the story of Big Tech, and what the alternatives might be. Read the rest

Bulletproof thobes and abaya

Tailor Saleh Alnahdi is courting the conservative Saudi gentleman who still worried about being gunned down in the street with a line of bulletproof thobes and abaya, lined with Aramid ("a little more expensive than kevlar") and complying with the US National Institute of Justice Body Armor Compliance Certificate requirements. As @evacide quipped: "This is not what I was expecting from the dystopian cyberpunk present, but here we are." Read the rest

Pepsi plans to use cubesats to display ads in the night sky

Pepsi has announced plans to contract with the Russian space startup Startrocket to project massive "artificial constellations" spelling out ads for a "nonalcoholic energy beverage" in the night sky; Startrocket is planning to launch a cluster of cubesats with reflective mylar sails in 2021. Read the rest

Pepsico launches a K-Cup for juice

Pepsico is the low-key -- some might say deliberately hidden -- backer of the Drinkfinity system. As Jaiksmith says, "it's a proprietary bottle that uses proprietary "pods" that are a mix of dry and liquid ingredients, no artificial sweeteners. For $35 you can get a bottle and 16 pods...about twice the cost (per oz) of their other product, Tropicana Orange Juice." Read the rest

Nebraska State Senator proposes constitutional amendment to allow corporations to create tiny, sovereign nations with no laws, taxes or rules

Nebraska State Senator Paul Schumacher [R-22] [(402) 471-2715] has proposed an amendment to the state constitution that would create 36-square-mile regions in the state where corporations would enjoy up to 99 years of sovereignty, with "no city or state taxes and no local or state regulations." Read the rest