Slavoj Žižek · The Non-Existence of Norway

Žižek, Europe, utopianism, migration, refugia, refugees, Norway, There is No Norway

There is something enigmatically utopian in this demand: as if it were the duty of Europe to realise their dreams – dreams which, incidentally, are out of reach of most Europeans (surely a good number of Southern and Eastern Europeans would prefer to live in Norway too?). It is precisely when people find themselves in poverty, distress and danger – when we’d expect them to settle for a minimum of safety and wellbeing – that their utopianism becomes most intransigent. But the hard truth to be faced by the refugees is that ‘there is no Norway,’ even in Norway.

http://www.lrb.co.uk/v37/n18/slavoj-zizek/the-non-existence-of-norway

This thou must always bear in mind, what is the nature of the whole, and what is my nature, and how this is related to that, and…

“This thou must always bear in mind, what is the nature of the whole, and what is my nature, and how this is related to that, and what kind of a part it is of what kind of a whole; and that there is no one who hinders thee from always doing and saying the things which are according to the nature of which thou art a part.”

Marcus Aurelius, Meditations (Book Two.)

Cameron’s World

internet, design, retro, web, web1.0, personalisation

Cameron’s World is a web-collage of text and images excavated from the buried neighbourhoods of archived GeoCities pages (1994–2009). In an age where we interact primarily with branded and marketed web content, Cameron’s World is a tribute to the lost days of unrefined self-expression on the Internet. This project recalls the visual aesthetics from an era when it was expected that personal spaces would always be under construction.

http://www.cameronsworld.net/

“Catfish” demonstrates that online intimacy is about quantity, not quality. Back in 2007, Leisa Reichelt, the head of user…

“Catfish” demonstrates that online intimacy is about quantity, not quality. Back in 2007, Leisa Reichelt, the head of user research at Government Digital Services in the U.K., defined ambient intimacy as “being able to keep in touch with people with a level of regularity and intimacy that you wouldn’t usually have access to, because time and space conspire to make it impossible.”

Consider the “Catfish” - The New Yorker (viaiamdanw)

India’s Forgotten Stepwells

architecture, water, infrastructure, india, civilisation

Rudimentary stepwells first appeared in India between the 2nd and 4th centuries A.D., born of necessity in a capricious climate zone bone-dry for much of the year followed by torrential monsoon rains for many weeks. It was essential to guarantee a year-round water-supply for drinking, bathing, irrigation and washing, particularly in the arid states of Gujarat (where they’re called vavs) and Rajasthan (where they’re baoli, baori, or bawdi) where the water table could be inconveniently buried ten-stories or more underground. Over the centuries, stepwell construction evolved so that by the 11th century they were astoundingly complex feats of engineering, architecture, and art.

http://www.archdaily.com/395363/india-s-forgotten-stepwells

Poison-Injecting Robot Submarine

robots, automation, conservation, reef, QUT, starfish, crown of thorns

This one-shot poison (which is harmless to everything else on the reef) is what makes autonomous robotic sea star control possible, since it means that a robot can efficiently target individual sea stars without having to try and keep track of which ones it’s injected already so it can go back and repeat the process nine more times. At Queensland University of Technology in Australia, a group of researchers led by Matthew Dunbabin and Peter Corke spent the last decade working on COTSBot,* which has been specifically designed to seek out and murder crown-of-thorns sea stars as mercilessly and efficiently as possible.

http://spectrum.ieee.org/automaton/robotics/industrial-robots/poison-robot-submarine