recycle the cloud

We all hear the story about how going paperless is greener, saves trees, etc. We also hear the story about how electronic isn't necessarily greener because our computers use energy, etc. Blah blah blah, the stories go, but it's ultimately a matter of trade-offs. Meanwhile, Google, Facebook, and other gargantuan server farmers give us ever-bigger quantities of space that we fill ever-less-important shit. So we migrate from paper to our drives to the cloud. Ah yes, the innocuous-sounding white, floaty, cloud. But just because the server farms aren't in our backyards doesn't mean they're not using lots and lots energy. So, I declare, recycle the data cloud! Crude possibilities:

>>Ritualistic webmail inbox cleansing parties.

>>Ritualistic burnings of unused alts in virtual worlds.

>>Recycler-magician-performers who transform your virtual shit first into something beautiful and then back into empty space.

>>If anti-file-swapping bots can recognize a song traveling through the network, can’t they recognize duplicates of other data, destroy them, and use pointers instead?

>>If authors just tagged their digital files with expiration dates, e.g. in the metadata.

virtual mergers and acquisitions

Virtual worlds almost never die, writes Castronova). But that doesn’t mean they can’t merge and acquire, especially as demographics change. Will Club Penguin merge with Webkinz or will penguins eat stuffed animals? Or will either of them soon be wearing mini-skirts and staying out past curfew?

AI for EI

According to the World Institute for Development Economics Research, too much economic inequality (above a Gini coefficient of .40) negatively impacts growth, due to incentive traps, erosion of social cohesion, social conflicts, and uncertain property rights, while to much equality (below a Gini coefficient of .25) negatively impacts growth due to incentive traps, free-riding, labor shirking, and high supervision costs (2001). But even if we accept this, who wants to be on the bottom rung of a so-considered optimal distribution of wealth? Well says Edward Castronova, “how do you make a world in which everyone is in the top 10 percent? The answer: AI.” Sounds absurd. But would the economy know the difference?

real photos of cybersex

Sounds gross. But aren’t you curious? At least a little? Google image searching wasn’t too fruitful. (Do cyberLovers get come on the keyboard? Actually, do they use the mouse-keyboard setup, or are there interfaces designed specifically for this purpose?) Some curator would certainly commission this series. Definitely that one in Me, You, and Everyone we Know.

pattern widget

Information about our everyday lives is increasingly digitized via social network sites, social calendaring, blogs, twitters, etc. So how about some kinda widget that digs through the information and finds recurring patterns? A widget that identifies correlations between the activities we do, social interactions we have, emotions we feel, foods we eat, and colors we wear, among other things. Patterns in when we fight with our Lovers (correlated with wearing yellow?), feel most creative (correlated with playing badminton?), experience bad gas (correlated with eating dairy?).

Now expand the scale to include the micro and the macro. Let the widget identify correlations between the social interactions we have, colors we wear, local weather, global economic news, and the stars. President Reagan consulted an astrologer for patterns between politics and celestial movements. We could concoct a widget for patterns between much much more, which would help us not only identify patterns, but engage with and potentially create them. Like dancers and musicians.

hold on a sec, I’m having an orgasm

A man I salsa danced with the other night was wearing a bluetooth. But what the title of this post suggests would be extreme multi-tasking.

the modern wrath of Tartarus

The mountain of shit known as our inbox feels like the modern-day Sisyphus myth. Except that our fate is worse. Not only can we never thoroughly plow through all those emails, but we receive them faster than we can reply. Which means that the mountain up which that boulder must be pushed just keeps getting taller and taller. If only our email clients had video game mode, with bomb-detonating SFX for every delete, we'd have some moral support around here, if not a little fun. Instead of "you've got mail!" it could be...

virtual avatar as 3D mirror

Imagine being able to walk up to yourself, and analyze your beauty from 360+ degrees with zoom capabilities to ensure that every strand of hair is perfectly in place, identify which angles are best for photographs, and have consultants help you with your posture. I’m thinking politicians and wealthy cougars.