Lots of fire and explosions, some cool engineering, chemistry, and physics. Some decent ideas for someone trying to be secure in their information. I'm not sure what more I need to say to introduce this resource.
Today's suggestion is fun and practical and is only tangentially related to freedom or philosophy. CodinGame is a game in which one programs their character in just about any programming language (no Rust, sorry). The game runs through a series of tests to see how many contingencies your program can over, granting a higher score for more tests cleared. I've been playing it this morning to see how much I remembered of Bash and Java and realizing that I've forgotten just about all my C(++).
What does this have to do with philosophy? Programming languages are function-driven languages. Like the difference between math, spoken language, artistic expression, programming language is another type of language. In order to best explore reality, I believe a philosopher has to have at least a passing familiarity with these different kinds of expression, each with their unique grammar and vocabulary. It gives one the epistemic and phenomenological tools required to see things from different angles, maybe even noticing regularities that would otherwise be missed.
Also, even though one may never find themselves programming autonomous drones to defend the planet from invading aliens, such know-how can server one's survival well, especially in high-tech self-providing environments. In order to run an aquaponics bunker/greenhouse off of a handful of Raspberry Pi-s, one would likely have to do a little coding to get them to do what one wants.
Also, this game is fun and you should try it for that reason.
The time has come, I think, to purge some podcasts off my list. I have more podcasts than I have time, and some of them have ceased providing utility for my current situation... which happens a few times a year. Usually, when this time comes, I share on facebook the ones that I am abandoning and why. Now that I have a platform on which I talk about podcasts incessantly, I figure this may be a better place to do so.
Podcasts I continue to listen to (in order of priority):
Podcasts I no longer listen to:
Podcasts that have been discontinued:
As one would expect, I am opposed to all of the TLAs in both principle and based on their actions. Of late, the FCC has been at the heart of some non-issues. Most especially that of Net Neutrality, which simply would not be an issue in a free society.
In the latest instance of the FCC attempting to halt technology and freedom, they are attempting to lock down all of the software interactions with hardware concerning network infrastructure. This is a major problem for three reasons:
The Beastlick Internet Policy Commission Outreach Team recently produced a new media license, similar to the existing GPL license. However, unlike any other media license, it does not hinge it's enforcement on the violence of the state being used to enforce it.
As a matter of fact, it is the only valid license that allows use by anyone EXCEPT governments and government employees. Enforcement of the license hinges on honor and shame as opposed to the violence of the state used to enforce the benighted concept of intellectual property.
As is the case with all things created by Michael W. Dean, the BipCot NoGov License is simultaneously something functional and farcical. It is functional as a legitimate media license that operates in the typical legal jurisdiction of copyright, EULA, and copyleft, granting the user of such a license some degree of protection from the insanity of IP laws and courts. It is also farcical at the same time, mocking the entire system of copyright law and courts, hinging its enforcement on shame and disallowing government use demonstrates the anarchist ethos in a peaceful manner.
So, if you make anything and put it out on the market, I recommend you follow in teh footsteps of HYPERCRONIUS and Ninja Trek, by licensing it with the only anarchist media license that currently exists:
Due to licensing issues with Weebly, this blog is only partially covered by the BipCot license, but once I secure my own domain and host, you can rest assured that it will be fully covered by the BipCot license.
Today's resource suggestion is another book. This one is available on amazon for purchase or, for free, in unabridged installments at The Daily Bell. It is a fun novel which explores real technology, real cultures, and provides the reader with a new way of looking at the world and a set of actionable options for improving one's quality of life.
To call Thieve's Emporium a work of science fiction would be unfair. While it somewhat defies genre, I guess it could be considered an educational drama? The characters are largely fictional, but what they face and what they do are largely non-fiction.
I don't want to spoil too much of the plot, and I have not quite finished the book yet, but I strongly recommend people read this book. With unlikely sympathetic characters in a world that is designed to marginalize them, and a slew of philosophical, moral, and ethical discussions that can and should be sparked by this work, It's certainly a good way to spend a lazy weekend.
Today's resource is tied to last week's full post, and relates to future posts on property. It relates to my recent entreaty for prospective Windows 10 users, as well. Today's resource is a long-ish, but important video that gives a great overview on the role technology plays in our lives, the role cryptography plays in that technology, and the ridiculousness of the laws and social constructs we have built around that technology. While his suggested solutions are certainly flawed, at least this guy is willing to address the issues and their existential ramifications.
Windows 10 is great,as long as you fix it first. And by "fix", I mean "turn everything off."
Microsoft has a tendency to build a decent system, and then heap mountains of bullshit on top of it, turn it on by default, and charge you for it. More concerning than your machine doing things that you don't know about, or Microsoft trying to charge you for it, is the reality that each one of these settings presents a serious security risk.
Even though everyone knows why security is important (even if they choose to ignore them), it's important to remind people that even if you've got a boring vanilla machine that you use exclusively for words processing and email, these security risks open ones machine to being used by malicious crackers for whatever nefarious purposes. I am occasionally called upon to help people get a machine running after it bogs down or breaks... every time, it's so riddled with bitcoin miners for ISIS, data miners from the NSA, ad/spyware for evil corporations, tor nodes and proxy gateways... and any one of these things can, if the government so chooses, get one landed in prison or killed.
So, in a manner of speaking, making sure you don't use the default settings on Windows 10 is a life-or-death situation. Here's a handy guide to at least pretend you're being cautious.
And here's a short song about just one of the many ill-advised portions of the License Agreement:
Bitcoin, as both a technology and as a currency, is an invaluable tool for the rise of freedom and decentralization. There are those in governments (especially the US government) who understand this and are doing their best to smother it in its crib. The remainder are ignorant and happen to be blundering their way into attempting the very same sort of abortion.
Fortunately, the government cannot regulate Bitcoin, they can only regulate the points of contact between Bitcoin and the legacy systems that the government controls. This, of course, has made access through exchanges and more traditional methods of exchanging one form of money for another quite difficult and somewhat risky. Fortunately, where there is a market demand, the market provides:
Purse.io is a simple solution to a ridiculous problem. Much like Brawker, a previous endorsement of mine that has since gone out of business, Purse.io allows one to essentially use their credit/debit card to buy Bitcoins.
Basically, someone makes a wishlist entry on a site like Amazon and places an appropriate amount of bitcoin into an escrow wallet to purchase that item. You then order that item form their wishlist. When they receive the item, the bitcoin is released from escrow and sent to your account. Congratulations! You've just got yourself some invaluable magic internet money.
The process works in reverse, as well. If you want to spend your newly-acquired Bitcoin to buy something from Amazon (say the price jumps in value 600% again and your $50 in BTC becomes $300 in BTC overnight), You need only to make an Amazon wishlist entry and to place enough bitcoin to make the purchase worthwhile to another Purse.io user (people frequently get amazon products at a 5-25% discount buying in BTC) and just wait for someone to fulfill that wish.
I've only used the service once, but the UI was seamless and easy to use, the instructions were clear and simple, and I managed to get my Bitcoin right away, courtesy of same-day shipping on Amazon. This is a great starting place for people who are bit-curious but intimidated by all the paperwork and regulatory bullshit associated with using fiat to buy crypto-assets on exchanges.
Today's resource suggestion is a blog post on ZomiaOfflineGames.com. You may recognize the site from the resource suggestion on HYPERCRONIUS; the man who made that game is a huge content producer, daily content on one of his handful of blogs, weekly or twice-weekly podcasts, video games, etc. All of his material is worth the time and effort; even when he is wrong, he is such in an intelligent and informative way. Today's resource suggestion is about the "quantified self" and the rise of wearables marketed as self-quantifiers and the inherent dangers and cultural tyrannies that can result from their use.
Wearables can kill.
It's short and to the point, and gives one a good taste of what to expect from the podcast or other blog posts.