The problem with white tech bros saving the world

I went down the e/acc rabbit hole just a little ways and I’m already frustrated that people who nominally support decentralization cannot see that any movement that is mostly a bunch of rich white men in urban Western environments is NOT the revolution they think it is.

AI is powered by decentralized digital sweatshops

AI at this stage requires reams of data annotation and human feedback. “As the technology becomes ubiquitous, a vast tasker underclass is emerging — and not going anywhere.”

“Autism is a Spectrum” Doesn’t Mean What You Think

It’s not a gradient that goes from “less autistic” to “more autistic”. That’s the entire wrong way to think about it. If you think about the visible color spectrum, red and blue are on opposite ends, but blue is not “really intense red”, they are actually just different colors. So, my understanding now is that “the spectrum” is a set of different traits that, if you have a lot of them, that makes up autism, but the traits show up differently in different people.

Jon Stewart interview on the US Classified Documents system

As you can imagine, it’s a mess. Really interesting, though. Data scientists will have to sort it out. 

Offline: Chris Hayes on Attention vs Recognition

Chris’s thesis is that attention is the addictive-drug version of recognition (someone seeing and acknowledging your humanness). I think the moral panic about corporations hijacking our attention is disempowering. We can turn it off. This whole era in human history may be calling us to develop a conscious relationship with our attention.

Techlore: Privacy Specialist Responds to John Oliver’s Data Brokers Segment

Great info and good links in the description box to tools for protecting your privacy. 

Cleo Abram: The Big Misconception About Clean Energy

The end goal isn’t to use less energy; everything about how we live is made better by more energy. The goal is to produce massive amounts of *clean* energy. 

Johnny Harris: The Dark Side of Electric Cars

“Clean” energy so far just means not fossil fuels. It doesn’t mean clean in any other way–fair societies, less environmental damage, etc. It’s up to us to make those things happen too.

Knowing Better: Neoslavery, The Part of History You’ve Always Skipped

Good overview of the real history of slavery, before and after the Civil War, continuing through debt peonage and convict leasing.

Of Pods, Squads, Crews & Gangs: Small Group Experiments In Radical Belonging

I’m beyond thrilled about this article! This is the kind of social relationships I want: Pods. Small groups of people devoted to growing together.

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