CityVP Manjit

4 years ago · 2 min. reading time · visibility 0 ·

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The Joy of Tracking

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First one should read this :

China’s CCTV surveillance network took just 7 minutes to capture BBC reporter

Is this an Orwellian nightmare, or a way to sleep easier at night knowing facial recognition technology aided by artificial intelligence can pinpoint anyone within site of a CCTV camera, and that in a time when we are not even close to the arrival of quantum computing. 

The joy of tracking will only be a joy if the technology identifies people who would otherwise be classified as jerks in our society, but humanity is still a distant concept and reality shows us that we are far more invested in the control of human beings.  I am not one for sticking a tape on the one computer that is equipped with a camera, though it is good to work on the computer and from time to time, stick one's tongue out at the camera - if only to convince ourselves that even a single human being is actually interested in what it is we are doing or not doing.  In aggregate my data is more valuable if it is linked to monetary incentive but the ease of surveillance becomes uncomfortable when we know it is in the hands of jerks, rather than protecting us from jerks.

Eventually we will get this respect for people thing right, but not for the foreseeable future.  In terms of the Internet's development we are still stuck at the klondike stage.  This is where a few people (often jerks) look at data and see "gold in them hills".  Then there is the super-jerk who is not even invested in how much financial benefit is involved, for the super-jerk is just bat-shit crazy.  So how do we deal with this world where surveillance is becoming the new normal and a lot of it is imposed by organizations who still see us as units of production.  Today we are more than just units of production, we are also the product for those organizations who profit from tracking us.   Every privacy organization speaks of data not being personally identifiable but if we get customized ads based on what we have recently expressed online, if that is not data that is personally identifiable, then I don't know what is.

The trick for me is about how I become comfortable with this new normal and at the same time get creative about how one goes about protecting whatever that leftover thing called privacy is.  One of the thoughts I had is buying a computer that has no internet connections, but then one needs a USB key to transfer information from and to it, so not even a stand-alone computer is impervious to tracking.  The cookie monster is not the only way tracking is done and even if we permanently wear a hat and sunglasses, how do we avoid people taking photographs of us and from them tagging us on social media.  Even with stern seclusion and personal privacy habits, we no longer live in the age of the recluse.  We live in the age of instant broadcast which will immediately find a fascination with people who are not followers or mainstream mannequins, so even Howard Hughes would find that hiding in our age has become a rather futile activity.


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CityVP Manjit

4 years ago #4

#6
The key for me @Jan 🐝 Barbosa is personally morphing and adapting to ever changing ways and also cultivating interests. Most people would not click a link about Acxiom http://archive.fortune.com/magazines/fortune/fortune_archive/2004/02/23/362182/index.htm and even if they did, in the steady flushing of media, that article would dissipate in short-term memory and not be filed to any long-term memory. Cultivation aids learning in a way followership cannot. There was always the adage of "if you can't beat them, join them" but there is a new reality today, which is "don't try to beat them, adapt to the change". That reality is driven by a whole series of technology tsunami's. Artificial Intelligence is one, Crypto-Currencies is another. beBee so far has not become a "Them". At the level of what I refer to as mainstream social engineering there are people like Douglas Rushkoff who think about these effects https://www.theguardian.com/technology/2016/feb/12/digital-capitalism-douglas-rushkoff but that still is an outside-in view, whereas my learning pathways are inside-out. The outside-in view is one that I feel got perpetuated because most corporations are also inside-out and large social media companies are corporations. I am not separate from this tracking but if tracking is an ecology we live in, I can guide my thinking by knowing I am tracked. At the quantum level even a particle is effected by measurement as if the particle knows it is being measured and so why not view tracking from a quantum mindset. In the spirit of Aikido however - the joy of tracking is firstly knowing we are tracked and then creating so many tracks that the tracking becomes information noise :-)

CityVP Manjit

4 years ago #3

#6
The key for me Jan \ud83d\udc1d Barbosa is how personally morph and adapt to ever changing ways and also cultivating interest. Most people would not have any reason to click a link about Acxiom http://archive.fortune.com/magazines/fortune/fortune_archive/2004/02/23/362182/index.htm and even if they did, in the steady flushing of media, that article would dissipate in short-term memory rather than be filed to our long-term memory. There was always the adage of "if you can't beat them, join them" but there is a new reality today, which is "don't try to beat them, adapt to the change". That reality is driven by a whole series of technology tsunami's. Artificial Intelligence is one, Crypto-Currencies is another. beBee so far has not become a "Them". At the level of what I refer to as mainstream social engineering there are people like Douglas Rushkoff who think about these effects https://www.theguardian.com/technology/2016/feb/12/digital-capitalism-douglas-rushkoff but that still is an outside-in view, whereas my learning pathways are inside-out. The outside-in view is one that I feel got perpetuated because most corporations are also inside-out and large social media companies are corporations. I am not separate from this tracking but if tracking is an ecology we live in, I can guide my thinking by knowing I am tracked. At the quantum level even a particle is effected by measurement as if the particle knows it is being measured and so why not view tracking from a quantum mindset. In the spirit of Aikido however - the joy of tracking is firstly knowing we are tracked and then creating so many tracks that the tracking becomes information noise :-)

CityVP Manjit

4 years ago #2

#1
A single power cut shows us how much dependency we have on the grid, indeed many people actually exhibit symptoms of stress when their connection is down. It is not as if the first thought is, "oh good ! that gives me time to read a book" instead in broad daylight a sense of disconnection arises. This means two things, we don't put much regard into developing contingencies in case of a power outage and we have not thought of alternatives regarding social norms. If a person gets stressed about disconnection then invest in alternative power sources - a back up generator, installation of solar panels or other means of batteries that keep the power on. If it is a loss of connection to the Internet, then the contingency is engaging in kinds of work that does not require immediate use of the cloud or networked connection - which may also help us improve our backing up of data habits. If it is social norms, then here is an opportunity to go next door and knock on one's neighbours door and introduce yourself to them - it is amazing how many people have no idea who lives in their neighbourhood. It maybe the neighbour is an asshole, so then think about creating a neighbourhood group, and if the weather is good to organize a street party.

CityVP Manjit

4 years ago #1

#2
You would think that laptop or smart phone manufacturers would create a sliding cover which we can manually use, but that shows how complicit these companies are that they would spend months figuring out how to make a product feel nice to the touch but not pay a passing regard to privacy factors.

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