Tag Archives: neoliberalism

Completely Different and Exactly the Same

I was flattered to see Nicholas Carr picking up on a blog entry I wrote about the Cartesian dualism underlying most thinking about the Singularity. I was equally pleased to read this comment on Carr’s post from CS Clark, who is otherwise unknown to me: I’m reminded that many tech/law debates depend on the new […]

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Centralization and the ‘Democratization’ of Higher Education

amazon central

In my previous post, “Computerization, Centralization, and Concentration,” I discussed how the fact that decentralization and distribution are genuine hallmarks of the networked computerization revolution can easily blind us to the fact that centralization and concentration, especially of economic power, are also its hallmarks, in many cases even more strongly than are the former. One […]

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Computerization, Centralization, and Concentration

uranium enrichment centrifuge

One of the most dangerous canards of the digital revolution is the one according to which distribution, decentralization, and democratization are the characteristic hallmarks of contemporary mass computerization. To writers of earlier ages (Huxley, Orwell, Lem, Weizenbaum, Wiener, Mumford, Ellul, Roszak, just to name a few), such sentiments would seem shocking, because what they understood […]

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Leaving and Not Leaving China

In the latest skirmish in the Google-China information war–but is really more like a US-China war, it seems to me, in which we have been drafted by a private corporation with what I can’t see as consent–Google has shut off its mainland china servers and redirected traffic to google.hk. It’s another remarkable example of the […]

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Draft for Comment: ‘Playing with Rules’

The Electronic Book Review kindly published an in-depth review of The Cultural Logic of Computation (and of Mark McGurl’s The Program Era: Postwar Fiction and the Rise of Creative Writing, both Harvard UP 2009) by Brian Lennon titled “Gaming the System.” The editors of the journal ask all reviewed authors to respond; after far too […]

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Fuchs on “The Empire of Economic Surveillance”

The brilliant Christian Fuchs reflects on Google buzz in a posting distributed today on nettime-l and [idc] titled “Google Buzz: Economic Surveillance – Buzz Off! The Problem of Online Surveillance and the Need for an Alternative Internet.” Among the more interesting observations including what is becoming for me one of many indications that Eric Schmidt […]

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Neoliberalism, Info-determinism, Expressive Absolutism

One of the central and most symptomatic of computational slogans is “information wants to be free.” Like most computational ideologies, it’s willfully techno-determinist, almost vitalist, with regard to “what information does,” even if many who recite the slogan may find ways to construe it otherwise. Like many pieces of “wisdom” that circulate in the digital […]

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Revolutions and the Politics of Networks

First published on Harvard University Press blog, Jun 24 2009. Few words have been heard more often lately than revolution. The word occurs in two ways, but the connection between them is at best fuzzy. First, commentators wonder if Iran is going through a political revolution. Second, they speculate about an “internet revolution”—not merely a […]

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A New Way to Grade: What Are Computers For? #57

From The Chronicle of Higher Education, Volume 52, Issue 27 (March 10, 2006). Section: The Faculty. Page A6. http://chronicle.com/weekly/v52/i27/27a00601.htm A New Way to Grade At Texas Tech, freshman composition has been revolutionized. Is the result too mechanical? By PAULA WASLEY Last semester Lindsay Hutton “taught” 1,940 students. She met only 70 of them in person. […]

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