Here’s another favorite Overview from 2015. Greenhouses - also known as plasticulture - cover approximately 20,000 hectares of…

dailyoverview:

Here’s another favorite Overview from 2015. Greenhouses - also known as plasticulture - cover approximately 20,000 hectares of land (more than 75 square miles) in Almeria, Spain. The use of plastic covering is designed to increase produce yield, increase produce size, and shorten growth time. For a sense of scale, this Overview shows roughly eight square miles.

36.715441373°, -2.721484966°

www.dailyoverview.com

Here’s another favorite Overview from 2015. The Forbidden City in Beijing, China was built from 1406 until 1420 by more than one…

dailyoverview:

Here’s another favorite Overview from 2015. The Forbidden City in Beijing, China was built from 1406 until 1420 by more than one million workers. The palace complex, which contains 9,999 rooms, is surrounded by walls and a moat that are 26 feet high and 171 feet wide, respectively.

39°54′53″N 116°23′26″E

www.dailyoverview.com

James C. Scott reviews ‘The World until Yesterday’ by Jared Diamond

review, history, violence, statecraft, capitalism, tribalism, slavery

The fact is that slaving was at the very centre of state-making. It is impossible to exaggerate the massive effects of this human commodity on stateless societies. Wars between states became a kind of booty capitalism, where the major prize was human traffic. The slave trade then completely transformed the non-state ‘tribal zone’. Some groups specialised in slave-raiding, mounting expeditions against weaker and more isolated groups and then selling them to intermediaries or directly at slave markets. The oldest members of highland groups in Laos, Thailand, Malaysia and Burma can recall their parents’ and grandparents’ memories of slave raids. The fortified, hilltop villages, with thorny, twisting and hidden approaches that early colonists found in parts of South-East Asia and Africa were largely a response to the slave trade.

http://www.lrb.co.uk/v35/n22/james-c-scott/crops-towns-government

Blue evaporation ponds are visible at the Intrepid Potash Mine in Moab, Utah, USA. The mine produces muriate of potash, a…

dailyoverview:

Blue evaporation ponds are visible at the Intrepid Potash Mine in Moab, Utah, USA. The mine produces muriate of potash, a potassium-containing salt used widely by farmers in fertilizer. The salt is pumped to the surface from underground brines and dried in massive solar ponds that vibrantly extend across the landscape. As the water evaporates over the course of 300 days, the salts crystallize out. So why are you seeing such vibrant colors? The water is dyed bright blue to reduce the amount of time it takes for the potash to crystallize; darker water absorbs more sunlight and heat.

38.483377775°, -109.681333272°

www.dailyoverview.com

How Daniel Rigmaiden discovered Stingray spying technology

surveillance, fraud, investigation, stingray, NDA, evidence, ACLU

Daniel Rigmaiden is the man who first discovered Stingray while he was in prison facing charges of tax fraud. In an attempt to live off the grid, Rigmaiden had concocted a scheme where he would file tax returns for dead people. He did so for quite a while — making sure to cover his tracks — and was able to rake in thousands of dollars. Despite his intense meticulousness to details, Rigmaiden was ultimately caught by the authorities. Yet he didn’t understand how they became hip to his ways. He used a slew of fake IDs, maintained almost no public identity, and even lived in the woods. The only weak link, he thought, was the cellular AirCard he used to access the internet. But, given that he only used fake identities and anonymized his web browsing, Rigmaiden did not understand how they tracked him down. And so he began to research.

http://uk.businessinsider.com/how-daniel-rigmaiden-discovered-stingray-spying-technology–2015–6?op=1?r=US&IR=T

Charisma and Causality

Art Review, Timothy Morton, Art, causality, OOO, appearances

Things are exactly what they are, yet never as they seem. We live in a world of tricksters. We never left the pre-Neolithic. It was all a nightmare that went viral. And we know this, because we have modern science. And this is the world described by object-oriented ontology. Which is why OOO is so great, and the real reason why it comes in for such hostile fear and rage. According to this view, an artwork cannot be reduced to its parts or its materials, nor can it be reduced to its creator’s life, nor to some other context, however defined (the last decade, the current geological era, the economic structure of human society, art discourse, power-knowledge – anything). And art has an actual causal effect. Art just is tampering directly with cause and effect, because art is what cause and effect actually is. Art is charisma, pouring out of anything whatsoever, whether we humans consider it to be alive or sentient or not.

http://artreview.com/features/november_2015_feature_timothy_morton_charisma_causality/

Martin Shkreli Accused of Being Surprisingly Good at Fraud

Bloomberg, Shkreli, fraud, investment, Wu Tang, SEC

Here are the criminal indictment and Securities and Exchange Commission complaint against Martin Shkreli, who was arrested today not for jacking up prices for lifesaving drugs, not for buying the only copy of a Wu-Tang Clan album and not listening to it, not for being generally vile on Twitter and in interviews, but just for garden-variety securities fraud. Here’s how the indictment describes the early going at Shkreli’s second hedge fund, MSMB Capital

http://www.bloombergview.com/articles/2015–12–17/martin-shkreli-accused-of-being-surprisingly-good-at-fraud

What about confusing clutter? Information overload? Doesn’t data have to be “boiled down” and “simplified”? These common…

“What about confusing clutter? Information overload? Doesn’t data have to be “boiled down” and “simplified”? These common questions miss the point, for the quantity of detail is an issue completely separate from the difficulty of reading. Clutter and confusion are failures of design, not attributes of information.”

Edward R. Tufte (viainthenoosphere)