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Vintage Outlandish!

This Content From 2003 (or earlier) see index

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Tech: empower yourself

We can build the web

I've always wanted someone to re-make this poster to relate specifically to the web, because we build it. We can do it!

The future is now

I'm a geek. I've been a computer nerd since I was four or five. My dad, who didn't see me that often because I was living in Iowa at the time, got me a computer, a Commadore VIC-20, for christmas. I learned to read in large part so I could play the text-game "Adventure".

Having grown up more or less immersed in technology, and subsequentally feeling very empowered in that area of life, I find the average citizen's fear of machines to be both strange and unfortunite. When speaking to other people about computers I often say, "it's a whole other world," which is pretty true, actually.

Even though my livelyhood is in some part dependent on other people being in the dark about how these overpowered calculators work, the trepedation of the masses to get their hands dirty is one of the things I aim to change in my lifetime. To get Marxist for just a second, Computers represent a radical re-distribution of the means of production for all elements of culture. First in print with desktop publishing and now with film, cheap machines lower the capital cost point for high-quality production to the point that any enterprising individual with a will can make it happen.

And that's not even getting into the revolution that the internet has coded into its digital DNA. The web may have been corporatized, but it's still an anything goes, all-comers-welcome place, the true global public forum. I really believe that it has the power to redress the imbalance between cultural consumption and cultural creation we have right now in the world. I have a whole site about this stuff that I did for a class back at NYU: denizens.cognisant.net.

Anyway, I like the idea that technology, the intellegent application of energy amplified by machinery, has the potential to make people confidant about their abilities, to give them powers they didn't have before. In the words of David Bowie, we can be heroes.

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Trips in Space and Time 8/02/03

Big Wheels in Berkeley
I scored a set of west-coast wheels today at the Ashby BART station flea market. It's a very tall schwinn road bike, black, deceptively heavy but smooth-riding. Thirty-five dollars to boot. I oiled and cleaned the works, dialed in the bakes and took it out for a shake-down cruise immediately. Nice riding on a beautiful saturday, realizing how out of shape I am as I wheezed my way though the hilly area behind the Berkeley campus.

After about an hour I started to get the swing of it. Made some minor mechanical adjustments (including a free wheel truing at the bike collective on Shattuck), drank a few liters of water and started finding my groove, cruising up and around and ending up with a beautiful view of the whole bay. The roads here are not kind to the speed inclined -- too many stop signs and crosswalks and lights -- but it was good to get out and proj for a while. This changes my summer dramatically.

...older trips...


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