A river that needs crossing political and tech blogs - On the political side, the is arrogance and ignorance, on the geek side the is naivety and over- complexity

My videos are on these two youtube channals visionontv (2,622,479 views) and undercurrents (21,576,123 views)

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Hamish Campbell
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Date: 01/03/15
Richard Hering
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Date: 03/02/15
Patrick Chalmers
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Matthew Paul Foster
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John Sinha
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Barrie Slipper
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Diamind
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marc barto
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Glenn McMahon
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Seraphine
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What works in Activist video?

Made 2 films with nearly a million views each on youtube, in both cases part of the reason they are "successful" is because people are hating on them.

More than thirty climate activists and local residents took mass direct action to prevent excavation work on Britain's biggest ever open-cast coal mine at Ffos-y-fran in South Wales.

Many people are learning to live sustainably, without money. In this video, they discuss their struggles, how they got to and developed kew bridge eco-village.

Parasitic traditional media

Its interesting how parasitic traditional media is, an idea or a news story will come out in a sub-culture (contemporary media) weeks or years before it becomes a “story” in traditional media. This time lag – together with the general lack of connection in traditional media to where story’s come from/break is noticeably dysfunctional in our new connected world.

This parasitical behaver will continue in-till we solve these issues in contemporary media:

* financial support for the production of grassroots per-per media – something like flattr is an example of an attempt to solve this problem.

* Ethical norms of linking and aggregation in per-per production need to solidify and be coded into contemporary media projects. An example of this would be the OMN project.

* a general discrediting of traditional media as a reliable source of information – shifting peoples behaver of linking away by providing better working contemporary media projects. An example of this would be the http://visionon.tv project.

The current connections between contemporary and traditional media are largly broken, do we try and fix it or not is the relevant question? Do we actually need these old gate keeping institutions and if we do, are they flexible and lean anufe to survive anyway? I think diversity of strategy’s are probably helpful here. 

Working on the boat - insulation

Insulation is importent for comfort and to stop rot/rust issues with condensation on boats.

http://www.spray-insulation.co.uk/Measuring.htm

http://www.sprayfoaminsulation.co.uk/services/marine-boat-insulation

The will have an added effect of absorbing/dampening engine noise - as I have herd that the lifeboats can be very noisy. Its going to be expensive - around £500 http://www.foamseal.co.uk/diy-spray-foam/index.php?cPath=3800006 but can leave this till the end of the summer.

Lifeboat to liveaboard conversion

Am thinking about getting one of these to covert into a live-in open media centre. They vary from 7-9m in length and have seating (like sardines) for 30-60 people. 

Proposed mission would be to: 
* remove most of the seats to open the space up 
* paint it so it wasnt bright orange (need a good weeks dry weather to 
do this) 
* put in some very basic live in space, bed, table etc. 
* fit some basic solar panels, batterys etc. 
* steam punk it up a bit. 

This would be done wombling style if anyone wont's to help. 


They are fresh off oil rigs so should be in working condition with all survival gear in them.  It seams that one of the reasons the is a lot of surplus lifeboats is that oil rig workers are getting fat (PDF) so the current lifeboats aren't large anufe.

Am going up to Scotland to have a look (and maybe buy) end of the week, then put it on the river lee/canal to do the rest of the fitting out over the summer.

Outline cost of liveaboard in the UK

BSS costs (4 years) £150

insurance (1 year) £120

Gold licence, all rivers and canals (1y) £643 (less for only rivers or canals)

Craning off truck into water on river lee £142

Red diesel Propulsion is about 0.75ppl

 

Licence initially would be continues cruising - Optional cost Mooring £1000-5000 (1y)

 

Here is the law on continues cruising – you can stay for two weeks in many spots http://canalrivertrust.org.uk/media/library/633.pdf

 

Here is the width of canals - Red and blue are good for the lifeboat size wise - Gray likely not http://www.jim-shead.com/waterways/mwp.php?wpage=Inland-Waterways-of-England.htm

The is breakdown cover for boats like the AA - river rescue 

Things to look at:

insulation

Lifeboat dft (PDF) 

BSS handbook

Apple’s Middle finger: It’s Pointed at You

The problem of people falling for lifestyle marketing.

A presentation of the idea of the Open Media Network and where it currently is

A presentation of the idea of the Open Media Network and where it currently is

The OMN is owned by nobody and run by nobody. It is merely a set of "stupidly simple" open standards, open databases and working practices.

We are building some hubs to flesh the network out.

Currently there are over 20 sites in the network. And OMN embeds on such sites such as New Internationalist and Games Monitor.  These embeds are using the OMN customisable video player.

How can you get involved? What is there at the moment? Let's highlight some of the applications you can currently use:

http://link.openworlds.info is an open database of links to radical projects. These can be added as an embed on websites to create the interlinking that is so important to the open internet’s health. This will be federated.

http://news.openworlds.info is a newsflash service to widen our networks outside facebook. It is building into an open data and open access federated network. You can grab an embed for your site sidebar.

http://visionon.tv Auto updating quality controlled video embeds with playlists (eg http://globalviews.visionon.tv/embed), drawing from a huge database of radical video. This is a working federated network.

http://blog.openworlds.info This is the first stage of an open blogging network.

http://fund.openworlds.info Open funding network – is a place for media activists to get small amounts of cash for their projects and equipment.

All of these applications actively need development work.

Please have a look at these links for more information and background on the network.

Here's an entertaining piece of polemic on the problem we face.

Here is an outline of possible OMN solutions

Why ethical aggregation and conversation?

It's all based on an ongoing understanding of the political history of the internet

A bit of humour

Why are conversations about technology, privacy and social change so difficult?

 

Over the last 10 years I have found a lot of intolerant and prejudiced attitude toward the impact new technology will have on our work and society. A recent conversation sparked off this thought. Our society has foundation myths - and they aren't the bible any more - consumerism and selfishness/paranoid narcissism it seems to me – we are Thatchers children.

 

Many of the conversations about the impact of the open web and corporate social networking with people are like a conversation at the edge of a cliff. Its high and the cliff edge is crumbling into the maelstrom of the sea far below, am on the edge of the cliff looking out and the person am having the conversation is standing on thin air. Our foundation myths are about not looking dowen which make this issue invisible, and explains the reaction, people don’t what to see, if they look down they fall, not a nice feeling.

 

How to work through this will-full/wishful ignorance driven by narcissistic fear and denial? Its clearly unhealthy for us as a society in the medium and long term, but it is a useful coping strategy for the individuals and organisations in the short term.

 

 

Thought please?

Ethical aggregation and conversation - OMN

What is ethical aggregation?

Always link back to the original producer hosting site. The exception to this is when the site is a corporate hosting site such as YouTube, then linking to an embed on an OMN site is preferable linking to that site. The content should be consumed where the producer of the content likes it – this should be built into our open CMS's as far as possible.

Reactive permissioning: the producer of content should be empowered (as far as technically possible) to decide how their content is consumed on sites. Eg, via embedding a simple title link, excerpt, or full content. This is by trusted feed not by genearly ristricting the content of the RSS feed. 

Our databases should be open to exporting of content by simple RSS aggregation or by a XML export option.

Metadata should be synchronised across the networking to enrich all media content.

  • link back to the source
  • reactive permissioning
  • no reposting

It's OK to add additional hosting options for media files – but the original publishers hosting/views should be respected. In the RSS feed, add content file URLs as fallbacks rather than as default media sources. A good aim is to back up media sources tohttp://archive.org and as a torrent file. If new open hosting options come along then these can added. Then only fall back to the original host if the corporate hosting source errors or is censored (respect for producers hosting desion and for reasons of scaling).

Where is the conversation?

This is an unresolved issue that is looking for a good solution. Some key points:

  • Move it off corporate hosting and networking sites as much as you technically can such as FB, twitter and youtube. Use such sites to post links to OMN content and sites.
  • Can we move the conversations with the RSS feeds? So that the conversations happen across sites and

appear across sites in activity streams? This is probably technically possible within the RSS02 spec – let's implement it.

What is the Open Media Network?

It's about human co-operation working with machine aggregation tools.

It's a stupidly simple social project using largly existing basic web technologies.

- RSS in and out via tag (with de-duping and field-matching).

This is it for the technical side of the project.

Then there is the social side: open licences, open data, open source, open process.

* open licences generaly means creative commons for content and GPL for software.

* open data means that all the core data of the projects can be exported into other node databases. This can be done via the basic RSS in and out or with an export option to a basic XML file.

* open source: that all the core software of the project is free to be edited and be changed.

* open process means that the organising of the network is done in public wikis and using public tools. Activerty strems makes projects transparent to user involvement.

The idea of the OMN is to re-build the vitality of the open web. The problem it hopes to overcome is HUGE.

* Applications like Facebook and Twitter have closed off the majority of people's online interactions and privatised/controled them for private gain and social control.

* openweb tools have withered from lack of use and resources.

There is currently little possibilty of an alternative to the polished world of google, facebook, twitter, amazon or e-bay etc. Many people are now talking about these issues, but the solutions they come up with are single sources, not networks. How do we make visible the value of cooperation?

The technical side is relatively easy. It's the social side that is the biggest barrier to revitalising the open web. The problem with all the failed pre-open networks is complexity and their proprietorial nature, This together with a failure of social cohesion (co-operation) has lead to an almost complete meltdown in the radical media space.

Why is the OMN different?

This is in no way a new project. Its innovation is purely in an understanding of the limitations of past projects. Over the last 10 years there have been many projects that have attempted the same thing.

Why will this work now?

It is built with existing standards - nothing is new or untested. It has an understanding of the failure of the social side of such networks. And aims to overcome this: 

* the geek problem of "improving" projects and thus running the risk of breaking the simplicity is overcome by insisting that nodes support all of the open RSS standards to be part of the network. Thus if an improvement is useful it will spread and if it is not it will fade without breaking the underlying fallback tecnologies. The idea is that the network will be resistent to the failure of improvements and open to the sucess of innovation - while being robust if this for some reasn fails.

* The social problem - the network is built by trust, thus will scale organically with no overarching control or hierarchy to block innovation or accress. There are no hardcoded APIs that limit and shape user involvement and data flow.

* too big and distributed to fail - opendata and node redundancy will help the network to be robust and resistent to the failure of large nodes. Also, the trust nature of the network will keep nodes honest and reliable without a central controlling athority. One part's decline is actually an opportunity for another part's growth.

* the issue of state repression. The network is a part of the open web using only open web standereds. This makes it part of a project that is currently too big to fail. As long as the open web is needed by state actors and corporations the technology of the OMN cannot be shut down without shutting down the open web. If one node is shut down its job is simply taken up by another. Data duplication means that little, if anything, is lost.

* Too much concern with security limiting open process is a real danger. The unspoken question is: open process for whom? - currently we use facebook which is open procees for governments and corporations and fundamentally a closed process for the rest of us. Without open process, the trust which the network relies on is very limited. thus the growth of the network will be stunted, and it will likely wither. Open process will not appeal to everybody. But as it is fundamental, people unhappy with it should not get involved.

For the more tec motivated here is a old rightup:

http://springofcode.org/organise/-/wiki/Main/Open+Media+Network

and here http://springofcode.org/organise/-/wiki/Main/Open+Media+Network+proposal

 

Videos from the eSWP event - spacehijackers

Interview in May 1st protest party in central London by space hijackersinterview with a humble custom service operator about overworking people and how to stop it.What is anarchy?

May 1st political party central London

Space hijacers afterparty when blocking a street in London was fun but made no sense. Grumpy liberal commenting on it.

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