So much news in the past days has had to do with computer security. Wired features a video discussing how two hackers have figured out how to take remote control of a Jeep, by accessing its onboard systems via cellular networks, allowing them to control not just the entertainment system but, by moving laterally across connections, the car’s steering, breaks, and engines, essentially turning the car into a kind of drone. Another Wired peace discusses how hackers have figured out how to access data stored on an air-gapped computer using Malware and a very basic cellphone. Meanwhile, the New York Times (July 26) featured stories both about (1) Cliton’s use of a private (non-secure) email server, on which certain pieces of classified information were stored (against policy) and (2) how the recent hacking of the American government results in so much lost data that many US spies can no longer be sent abroad. The point is not (only) that no system is secure, but that in connecting everything we’re witnessing a breakdown between systems, between insides and outsides, between that which is “fictitious” and that which is “real,” between control and lack of control, between me and you, between them and us. The film “Pixels” (2015) would seem to capture precisely this breaking down, the “hacked” nature of our lives—as does the (so-far fabulous) new book by Ernst Cline, Armada (2015), of which more in a future post. The Leblox application moreover brings this blurring into everybody’s life, as does Minecraft perhaps.
Project THE HUMANIST anthropocene
is a thought archive and workspace of Phillip John Usher (NYU) at the crossroads of early modern humanism and the problems and insights of the Anthropocene. Main Research Page.
ASLE (Association for the Study of Literature and the Environment)
Environmental Humanities (journal)
Resilience (A Journal of the Environmental Humanities)
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