That’s not to say that all circular buildings represent some emergent 21st-century order. It is interesting, though, that past precedents have usually been buildings designed for spectatorship: sports stadiums or, more resonantly, panopticon prisons, where inmates’ cells are arranged in a ring so they’re visible to guards in a central observation tower. Take away that tower and you have the Apple campus. — The Guardian
Circles are an emerging form of office buildings (e.g. Apple HQ, Zappos, Government Communications HQ) and organizing people (Holacracy), as they convey positive qualities like transparency and open collaboration. But, as one New Zealand artist warns in his work, what sinister undertones linger...
Visitors to the garden bridge in London will be tracked by their mobile phone signals and supervised by staff with powers to take people’s names and addresses and confiscate and destroy banned items, including kites and musical instruments, according to a planning document. [...]
Caroline Pidgeon [...] said she feared the bridge was following “a worrying trend of the privatisation of public places, where the rights of private owners trump those of ordinary people”. — theguardian.com
We were invited to Qatar by the prime minister's office to see new flagship accommodation for low-paid migrant workers in early May - but while gathering additional material for our report, we ended up being thrown into prison for doing our jobs.
Our arrest was dramatic. — bbc.com
It’s a Thursday morning in Beijing, and the world’s most famous living artist, Ai Weiwei, is sitting with one of the world’s most controversial technologists, Jacob Appelbaum, in the second-floor lobby of the East Hotel. [...]
On a whim, Ai suggests that they call Wikileaks founder Julian Assange, who has been living for the last two years at the Ecuadorian embassy in London. [...]
Ai and Assange talk for several minutes about the mundanities of the dissident life. — fusion.net
The idea behind CV dazzle is simple. Facial recognition algorithms look for certain patterns when they analyze images: patterns of light and dark in the cheekbones, or the way color is distributed on the nose bridge—a baseline amount of symmetry. These hallmarks all betray the uniqueness of a human visage. If you obstruct them, the algorithm can’t separate a face from any other swath of pixels. — theatlantic.com
Looking at the diagram of a restricted image reminded me of the ubiquitous stock photograph of the NSA, the one reminiscent of the Kaaba and among the few used by news outlets. The photograph’s ubiquity, along with its subject’s resemblance to another opaque monument, serves as shorthand for an institution that seeks to be perceived as beyond human comprehension or accountability.
I made my pilgrimage not to the NSA, however, but to adjacent temples of lesser gods. — creativetimereports.org
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