Very pleased to have been part of the EDIT2.0/ project.
And I'd like to publicly thank Craig Burston (for more than one thing) here:
For having doggedly organised this in the first place. Great work, sir!
For having allowed me to be part of it. (I donated some audio to the tape and a piece to the booklet)
For having even-more-doggedly pursued getting a copy to me - despite having had a difficult 2015 himself - (seemingly) despite the best efforts of the Royal Mail to deliver this to me. I believe Craig may have mailed this to me on three different occasions.
I think Craig started organising this about a year ago. The project launched sometime in Sept or Oct (sorry, memory's a bit sketchy here), and - thanks to Craig - I've finally got my copies. Cheers!
Hopefully, those of you who were interested scored copies either back at the LDN launch or via the college back in autumn.
Old White People (aka The New Yorker) try'n pump up the value of their Facebook Shares, 'cos As Any Fool Kno, TWITTER IS ALREADY DEAD.
Too much noise, too many adverts, too many trolls, too much repetitive circularity of conversation. Good 'bot platform, though.
But this is, like, one big Facebook fanboy jerkoff:
"In Facebook’s case, the company has demonstrated its mastery of product focus and long-term commitment to user experience. While Mark Zuckerberg’s empire sent users sloshing to and fro on the seas of privacy invasion in its early years, the past five years have seen the company come to dominate and define the concept of a social conversation. If users get abusive on Facebook, they’re dealt with. If someone wants to wage a campaign of noise and intrusion, the repercussions are varied and plentiful. You may not agree with Zuckerberg’s “one identity” concept, but the fact that people have to register their real names has certainly made Facebook a much safer space in which to engage. That’s to say nothing of its mobile and ad offerings, which the company has finally paired elegantly, allowing Facebook to take an even larger bite of mobile-ad dollars. The company closed its latest quarter with revenue up a whopping fifty-one per cent year over year.In Facebook’s case, the company has demonstrated its mastery of product focus and long-term commitment to user experience."
LOL everything, espesh that last sentence. Yeah, them Old White People really gettin' the hang of Facebook now.
Wasn't long ago that pundits were saying Facebook was dead because it hadn't embraced Mobile quickly enough.
"Meanwhile, a series of mediocre product changes at Twitter (such as the much-hyped but ultimately confusing Moments feature), a stagnant user base, and a massive executive brain drain have called into question whether Twitter can survive as a business. In the past week, the company has lost its vice-president of media, V.P. of product (to Instagram, natch), its head of the growing video service Vine (to Google), its V.P. of engineering, and its H.R. head. Unsurprisingly, the company’s stock has lost about fifty per cent of its value over the past three months."
It's never too late or too soon to say how much I hate Jack Dorsey, though. I hated him before it was fashionable to hate him LOL I may even hate him as much as I hate Zuckerberg, but it's a tough call to make. The man who once berated all of Europe for its "lack of ambition" returns to his failing, no - failed! - company. No more ski holidays or rare vintage motorbikes for Jack for a few months. He gotta WORK. Poor Jack.
"These molecular investigations shed light on the large human trials that have implicated antioxidants in cancer. It is possible that the supplements did not trigger cancer, but rather accelerated the progression of existing undiagnosed cancers, making later discovery of the disease likely. In other words, it “could be that while antioxidants might prevent DNA damage - and thus impede tumor initiation - once a tumour is established, anti-oxidants might facilitate the malignant behavior of cancer cells.""
"The researchers, chiefly from the Broad Institute, Harvard Medical School and Boston Children's Hospital, found that a person's risk of schizophrenia is dramatically increased if they inherit variants of a gene important to "synaptic pruning" -- the healthy reduction during adolescence of brain cell connections that are no longer needed.
""In patients with schizophrenia, a variation in a single position in the DNA sequence marks too many synapses for removal and that pruning goes out of control. The result is an abnormal loss of gray matter.
"The genes involved coat the neurons with "eat-me signals," said study co-author Beth Stevens, a neuroscientist at Children's Hospital and Broad. "They are tagging too many synapses. And they're gobbled up.""
A cure is still a long way off, obviously, but it offers hope that the causal mechanism(s) can be further clarified and therapies eventually developed. You might not be aware that I'm an Open Science advocate - well, you do now - so I found this part a heartening read:
"This could not have been done five years ago," said Hyman. "This required the ability to reference a very large dataset. When I was [NIMH] director, people really resisted collaborating. They were still in the Pharaoh era. They wanted to be buried with their data."
The single's a classic, of course.
But a couple things I bounced off recently made me briefly (re-)consider what it meant to "live on video" (contemporary Surveillance Society aside).
I rewatched Videodrome a few weeks ago, for the first time in - ooh, a couple decades maybe - so it was interesting to see how things had played out realworld-wise in the meantime: but the stuff that really caught my eye this time round was not the supposed 'Body Horror' themes that Cronenberg was famous-notorious for, but the 'living on video' / interchangeability of reality & the mediadrome narrative tics. The McLuhanesque Brian O'Blivion character (a precursor / near-relative of Max Headroom, yeah?) was far more fascinating to me now than when I first saw the film in my 20s. (Love the bit where his daughter preserves an archive of video-clips of him - that's how he 'lives' now, she says, how he exists - on video! - Heh: how very Instagram, how very *er* post-Web 2.0 with its obsession for documenting, well, everything). Anyway, since re-watching it, Videodrome now seems to be all over my timeline bubble (maybe it's been on TV recently or something? Plus: combined with the sort of folks I follow / interact with online, you can see how this mini-Videodrome relevancy-resurgence might be anything but a coincidence LOL - *blows good-humoured raspberry at the RAW-aggregation / 23-coincidence micro-industry*)
Then Warren posted this yesterday, which kinda fascinated me in all sortsa ways: "It feels like a dated gag – the “television candidate” is a bit we were doing in science fiction in the 60s, 70s and 80s, after all." Yep.
And then, this, which I stumbled over early this morning, which seems like it partially answers Warren's line of thought. The head of CBS, basically saying "we want political candidates acting crazy on TV, because it's good for our revenue-streams..." which is kinda D'UHR! as soon as someone says it out loud, but normally sits below the surface of things undisturbed, and infers a sort of recursive-cultural-loop in which people already in the public eye (and on TV) are encouraged by the mediadrome to constantly act as if they're on TV - as if they only exist inside the mediadrome. Which they kinda do. And, yes, sure, it's all very 80s, as Warren rightly points out -- but also very PKD, Cyberpunk, Baudrillard, Cronenberg, etc - round up the usual suspects!
My own suspicion is that we probably climbed inside the TV-set en mass on the day that Kennedy got assassinated (Ballard hints at this very strongly) and we never quite climbed out again. It was the start of the great Mediadrome Mass Migration; they've changed the names of the boxes we're sat inside several times since then, but it's mostly variations on the same thing.
The Trans-X ("transex") single plays out some other, slightly different themes, but there are points of convergence w/ Videodrome. The record was a huge gay / non-cis hi-nrg hit which is, of course, open to all sorts of different / non-totalising interpretations, one of which might be that the idea of 'living on video' is to live your life as if on TV - (or in an MTV pop-video of that era) - to create and assimilate new identities from 'video', to borrow from unlikely and defiantly wayward role-models, to absorb and project the Fabulously Glamorous, the Other, soak up the essence of the True You whose existence is denied or suppressed in 'this' world but is revealed - becomes available (for appropriation) - when viewed on the other-side-of-the-80s-video-screen, and can be readily re-enacted on the dance-floor, the street, etc. "Living on Video" in this 80's context seems to be requesting that the listener copies costume / gestures / attitudes from video (itself an exaggerated copy of 'this' world), spin-rinses them with their own desire-deficits and reintroduces them back into 'this' world in an elevated, meta-exaggerated form of self-reinvention. Long Live the New Flesh!
Don't wanna riff too much about Videodrome itself (though it is endlessly flippin' fascinating) 'cos (a) I had some serious root-canal work done this morning and I feel utter shit right now; and (b) folks waaaay cleverer than me have written n critically sifted this far more vigorously / rigorously than I could, BUT: Cronenberg's introduction of the video-slot / slit into his protagonist's torso plays out on a number of levels, one of which could perhaps be seen as a temporary 'feminisation' of the Max Renn character - Cronenberg's body-horror-triggering here hinging on the cismale's fear / fascination of being physically penetrated - though the opposite of this invasion-of-self is Renn's 'growing' / 'fusion' of / with a gun-hand - an overtly phallic objectype - so that the character not only flips between the real world / the video world, but seesaws between 'male' / 'female' phenotypes (foreshadowed by Woods' flirting with different dominant / submissive positions earlier in the film -- tensions which he never seems to quite resolve and which mostly account for the anxieties and confusions that drive the character, the narrative and the viewer). No one in the film - male or female - is ever quite who they seem to be.
As well as acting as surrogate genitalia, the video-slot is also a portal through which data / information can be (physically) imported via the sexually 'haunted' video-cassettes. As we're all aware, real-world information received from the mediadrome can be used to 'control' societies, to disseminate false narratives and ideology, but Cronenberg seems to be saying that the information inserted via the tape (data from the 'world' of 'video') can also be culturally disruptive, revolutionary and invoke physical / ideological changes in individuals - a positive (and internet-preempting) message that seems to parallel that of certain strands of 80's hi-nrg dance-music.