Tag: Technorhetoric

clippy suicide
anthropomorphism and design

Rule #7: Respect Social Standards

Anthropomorphic products enter the human social space. Humans have the most complex social behavior of any organism on Earth. Anyone or anything trying to join in should be careful to do it right.

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Visual
Augmented-Bodies

Effortless Learning

Matrix-style learning sounds like an impossibility, yet new research suggests it might become reality. Boston University and ATR Computational Neuroscience Laboratories in Kyoto have conducted experiments in which they demonstrated that they…

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blue coral
Biomimicmarketing

Growing Cement like Coral

Corals are the master builders of the animal kingdom. Powered on plankton and their symbiotic algae, hard corals extract the carbon dissolved in seawater and turn it into their calcium carbonate skeletons.…

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Biomimicmarketing

Robot Guide Dog

Possibly the answer for blind people with cynophobia, the fear of dogs. This robot guide dog is stil a bit slow compared to the old nature version, but as technology advances it…

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Designed-by-Evolution

Human Nature Forecast

Interview witth TEDx on how people are technological by nature, yet how we also need humane technology to remain human, or become even more human than we are today.

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incredible shrinking man
Augmented-Bodies

Incredibly Shrinking Humanity

Arne Hendricks will be presenting The Incredible Shrinking Man at the Next Nature Power Show on November 5th.

Social erosion, fisheries depletion, deforestation- for the 7 billion people on earth, we’re not just approaching an era of resource scarcity, we’re already there. Except for the lucky few, food, shelter, and even water can be expensive and in short supply. We have tried to address global problems with bigger technologies and bigger laws, but what if we decided to go small? Really small. How would the world change if every human was only 50 centimeters tall?

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De Nederlandse Berg
Dynamic-architecture

Get Thee Up into a Fake Mountain

If you felt like building a 2,000 meter mountain in the Netherlands, which features would you like to add? Journalist and accidental landscape visionary Thijs Zonneveld wants to know. Suggestions have included …

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THfTA
Sentient Spaces

Trading Humans for Trading Algorithms

The economic system and profit motive has been a driving force that steers and even dictates social change. Investors and stockbrokers have been a major influence to these social changes, as they decide where money is allocated to serve a specific function. The reason why money is invested in some rather than other businesses isn’t always related to evidence that any given company will do better than the other. Rumors and trading floor gossip sometimes fuel speculations that reap major profits for some and painful losses for others. Losses that could mean the termination of jobs. Of course investment and successive financial gains can also lead to job losses, mostly due to automation where machines replace human workers.

Now in a strange yet somewhat satisfactory twist of irony, the people who have been making money out of money, have a growing chance of being replaced by faster and cheaper algorithms that can do their jobs better.

“The Foresight Project” by the “Government Office for Science” of the United Kingdom produced a report called “The Future of Computer Trading in Financial Markets” which investigates the trends of computer trading and its effects on financial markets. One of these effects is the replacement of human speculators by algorithms. Thus far about a third of UK trading is done by computers compared to three quarters in the United States.

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sins
Intimate Technology

Sin free for just €1.59

For just £1.19 ($1.99, €1,59) you can download an app for your iPhone which offers tips and guidelines with the sacrament, “the perfect aid for every penitent” as the description reads. This,…

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berg lumine plat
Fake-for-Real

Holland Gets an Unnatural High

When the Dutch built the Netherlands, they forgot to add any mountains. The highest point in Holland is a measly 323 meters, compared to 2,962 meters for the highest mountain in Germany.…

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eyeborg
Anthropomorphobia

Deus Ex: The EyeBorg Documentary

Back in 2009 Rob Spence, a cyborg film maker, worked together with a team of ocularists, inventors, engineering specialists on a prosthetic eye which can capture and stream video. He then started…

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NextNatureIsNutsButILoveIt
Biomimicmarketing

Drugs are Nuts

Thinking about Next Nature can sometimes result in a feeling of vertigo. Normal standards are eroded and slowly replaced by next natural ones. A bewildering example can be found in a letter the Food and Drug Administration (FDA) sent to a manufacturer of walnuts.

Based on claims made on your firm’s website, we have determined that your walnut products are promoted for conditions that cause them to be drugs because these products are intended for use in the prevention, mitigation, and treatment of disease. The following are examples of the claaims made on your firm’s website under the heading of a web page stating “OMEGA-3s … Every time you munch a few walnuts, you’re doing your body a big favor.”

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northern corn rootworm
Manufactured Animals

Monsanto’s Technorhetoric Kills Corn

Mega-agro-biotech corporation Monsanto recently denied that insects have developed resistance to their patented Bt corn. Injected with a bacterial gene toxic to corn rootworms, Bt corn has proven so successful with farmers that it now makes up 65 percent of the corn planted in the US. Fields of wilting, dying corn are now following years of massive popularity. Bt-resistant worms have been found in Iowa, Illinois and Minnesota, and are likely to continue spreading.

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handwriting_530
Back to the Tribe

Why Handwriting Must Die

Associate professor Anne Trubek argues that handwriting will soon be history, because writing words by hand is a technology that’s just too slow for our times, and our minds. A copy-paste summary from her essay:

“Handwriting has been around for just 6,000 of humanity’s some 200,000 years. Its effects have been enormous, of course: It alters the brain, changes with civilizations, cultures and factions, and plays a role in religious and political battles.”

“Most of us know, but often forget, that handwriting is not natural. We are not born to do it. There is no genetic basis for writing. Writing is not like seeing or talking, which are innate. Writing must be taught.”

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Noosphere

Let the Algorithms Roam Free

In this TED talk, Kevin Slavin explains how computer algorithms are breaking free of their virtual habitats and changing the physical world to their liking. Through algorithms, humans are starting to understand …

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Anthropomorphobia

Human Augmentation™

As a gamer, I come across many visions of possible futures. But this trailer from the upcoming video game Deus Ex: Human Revolution, the third part in the Deus Ex series shocked…

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