BLDGBLOG carries Simon Norfolk‘s incredible photo today of the MareNostrum supercomputer, housed in a chapel at the Technical University of Catalonia in Barcelona. Quite a contrast from One Wilshire, about which more can be read again in the AUDC Wiki, which has recovered from being off-line for a few weeks.
Earlier this year, after comparing advertisements from the 1980s and the present day, I suggested that the consumption of luxury items has become more and more widespread in network culture
Recently, I ran across a story in the Economist on
The Disappearing Mid-Market that argues that consumers are finding new ways to save through eBay and other bargain outlets (buying used clothes is more acceptable than ever) while buying more and more luxury goods. The result is the end of the mid-market. Goodbye Sears and Macy’s.
How do individuals relate to each other on the Internet? A paper from the Journal of Computer-Mediated Communication, The Social Affordances of the Internet for Networked Communication, suggests that in place of groups, we will see the rise of network individualism.
Talking Headers is a history of email. I was amazed by the account of Steven Lukasik, ARPA’s director from 1971 to 1975, lugging around a thirty pound Texas Instruments terminal and an acoustic coupler to check his email once an hour. More about the terminal Lukasik was likely to have used here
In my article on the Centripetal City, I suggest that the concentration of Internet infrastructure poses a potential terrorist target. But what of the other sort of terror, the Orwellian terror of complete government surveillance, the state of exception created by total war? Network culture may appear to be liberating, but what of this dark underside? In (post-)Soviet America, you don’t Google the NSA, the NSA Googles you!
The scandal over wiretaps by the NSA has been brewing for some time, but yesterday Wired Magazine released documents that detail charges that AT&T built secret rooms in a San Francisco company office in order to cc: traffic from its WorldNet Internet Backbone to the NSA. Read Wired’s story here and view the documents in pdf hereRead more
Together with Unjoo Noh, I designed the new web site for the United States chapter of the International Working Party for the Documentation and Conservation of building sites and neighborhoods of the Modern Movement (DoCoMoMo). Take a look and, while you’re there, find out more about this worthy organization of which I am a national board member.
The Economist recently ran a story on how the world’s biggest charity runs IKEA:
What emerges is an outfit that ingeniously exploits the quirks of different jurisdictions to create a charity, dedicated to a somewhat banal cause, that is not only the world’s richest foundation, but is at the moment also one of its least generous.
The animation accompanies Holmes’s paper on The Diffusion of Wal-Mart and the Economics of Density