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

My videos are on these two youtube channels visionontv 3,832,876 views and undercurrents 22,689,976 views

 

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Problems with boat solar install

 

Installed a MPTT 12v set-up on my boat about 9 months ago, worked well getting 4-8 amps from 2x 120w panels mounted flat on the boat cabin roof.

 

A week or two ago it started to fail, one of the panels was putting out 1.4v the other full volts so disconnected one panel and the set-up worked for a few days before the other panel failed. It was putting out full voltage but only showing 0.1 amp on the MPTT controller under full sun.

 

Checked all the wiring, no change, so replaced all the wiring, this did not fix the issue. With all the new wiring I put in a older non MPTT charge controller and went away for the weekend, came back to find the battery’s at the same state of charge.

 

The “broken panel” was putting out 1.4v in the shade and 9.5v in full sun, the “working panel” 13-20v depending on the sun, but no power was going though to the battery’s.

 

I removed both panels and installed a old 100w flexible panel, this worked with the old charger and the MPTT charger. It seams both of the 120w panels had failed.

 

Talking to the the suppler to resolve the issue.  

Boating Europe

 

Circumnavigating Europe by inland water ways in a converted north sea oil rig lifeboat.

3-4 year trip from London to Russia and back through:

 

Thames - London

Seine - Paris

Rhone - Marseille

 

Over winter in the south before returning in the spring:

 

River Rhine – Germany

River Main – Germany

River Danube – Austria, Balkans

 

Over winter in Bulgaria:

 

Black sea – sea of Azov

Then the inland waterways through Russia to St Petersburg and into the Baltic sea

down the coast of the Baltic states and into the canal network in Poland/Germany

 

Cross channel back to London

 

I set off from Kew Bridge 11th and the first stop on this journey is the river Darent in Dartford, “Milda” will be here till the weekend of the 21st before setting sail for the Medway (weather and tide permitting)

 

http://hamishcampbell/boat

https://www.facebook.com/boatingeurope/

 

Cheap travel/small screening projector

LED bulbs, cheap lithium battery’s and high power USB charging have changed what a projector is. Its now easily possible to have a full cinematic experience in your pocket and run it for hours on very cheap USB battery’s. The days of expensive, power hungry and fragile projectors are over for all but the most demanding permanent set-ups. The are hundreds of these “micro” projectors available, they vary in quality a lot, here is a review of a good one.

If your looking for a very cheap travel/small screening projector I can recommend this one

ECsee-ES130-Mini-DLP-Projector

Tiny, relatively well made, lots of ports and did I say very cheap.

LED bulb so robust long life and low power.

Plays videos from HDMI, USB thumb drive, micro SD card in many formats (it will not play surround sound audio files). As with many embedded playback devices it can get the aspect ratio wrong this is a normal problem. Will work fine by HDMI with image and sound from a laptop etc.

Used it at a recent all night illegal rave party under a railway bridge to provide background images, plunged into a small USB battery (5000mah) it easily lasted the night on loop.

Fits in your pocket and has a built in battery which last 1-2 hours, charges/runs off standard USB up to 2amps.

Its no were near its rated 800 lumen, more like 50-100 which is normal for a projector this size. You would have to pay something like £500 for a 500 lumen LED projector. Its brighter and the sound is louder if you plug it into a 2amp USB battery/power supply rather than run it off its internal battery.

Sound might be an issue when running on mains power due to hum.

In darkness it creates a large bright (somewhat over saturated) image, like all micro projectors it will struggle to overcome ambient light.

Specification:

Display Type DLP Technology
Resolution 854x480
Highest resolution supported 1080p (this is acturly only 854x480 and will be dowen scaled)
Brightness 800 Lumens (this is not true)
Contrast 800:1
Aspect Ratio 4:3 ,16:9
Built-in battery 3.7V 1500 mA
Focusing Manner Manual Focus,F=125
Image Size 14 to 150 Inches
Projection Distance 35.5cm-430cm(short throw)
Lamp LED Lamp
Power consumption 10W Max
Speakers 8Ω1W
Lamp Life 20,000 Hours
Interfaces HDMI/USB/AV/SD/3.5mm earphone jack
Supported Video Format 3GP(H263, MPEG4) / AVI(XVID, DIVX, H264) / MKV(XVID, DIVX, H264) / FLV(flv1) /
MOV(H264) / MP4(MPEG4,AVC) / MPG(MPEG1) / VOB(MPEG2) / RMVB(RV40)
Supported Audio Format MP3 / WMA / ASF / OGG / AAC / WAV
Supported Picture Format JPG / PNG / BMP
Supported Document  Format TXT
Color Green, White
Dimensions 78*71*24.5mm (L x W x D)
Weight 130g

 

Have been testing it for a week, so far I would say a buy.

7/10 value for money

 

Open Media Network

The project

The Open Media Network is a project to play a small role in revitalising the open web. It uses the tried and tested technology of RSS, taking it out of a basic personalised mash-up of feeds into an open metadata social network. Its initial focus will be around alternative media, enabling projects to grow and cross-fertilise independently of the social media corporate giants.

Rationale

The #dotcom silos are completely dominant in terms of people's identity, for publishing and for networking etc. At social events you once gave your phone number, then your email address, and now you friend on facebook.

By contrast, the open web has plateaued or is already in decline, depending on your point of view. To fix the issues of why the open web is failing we first need to look at why it succeeded:

  • KISS throughout
  • no identity checking
  • no security

The internet/web was a KISS trust-based network that took over the world we have been living in for the last 30 years, and it was no accident that identity checking and security were missing from the original internet/web.

To reboot the open web will take many overlapping streams of open projects. Here we are proposing a KISS project to that end.

Let's look at a small, once healthy stream. Alt/grassroots media used to play a large role in the world. Now all that remains is a few sprigs of green in a polluted/dry river bed. In its heyday the global #indymedia (link broken) network rivalled the BBC and CNN in its scope and coverage on the big days of action and international summits. Now all that is left are some strongly branded small projects (http://novaramedia.com), that grew from #dotcom social media and are only networked within them, and a handful of big legacy projects (http://www.democracynow.org).

The problem we face is a pre-web problem, that of silos. That is each project is a small pool in a empty/dry river and there are very few links or shared data from one to the other (link to 3 projects). The currency of the web is the "valid link"to build networks. Alt-media's growth is severely limited by this lack.

Open Media Network

The OMN is one project to fix this problem.

It is a project of the 4 opens. It is a human-based project at its core, as opposed to an algorithmic project.

Quite simply we want alt-media sites to link to each other and share content, to become a healthy network rather than isolated drying-out silos. 

The outcomes needed for it to work are easy to achieve, and they have a large possibility to grow/empower projects as a network.

The project uses RSS as a data object exchange format, using a tagging folksonomy as a way of shifting the data flow between federated sites. It uses both native code plug-ins and javascript to “embed” links to this tagged data flow in open web sites and blogs (working example visionontv side bar on http://newint.org)

RSS aggregating news portals are not new, which is a major part of their strength for the realizing of the Open Medium Network. Taking this tried and tested tech into an open metadata social network is new. Another thing which will be new to some of the media side of the project is the 4 opens.

Each participant in the OMN will embed at least one news river in their sidebar. 

The plan is to build synching aggregating portals / hubs (based on existing CMSs) that feed those sidebar rivers.

Human networking based on trust is key.

Aggregators choose to link RSS feeds into their hubs.
Users choose the tags for the link streams from the hubs into their side bars. 
To facilitate trust, basic security is built in.

  • flows can be on auto or moderation
  • there would be a feed-based roll-back for when spam gets through the trust network.

User embeds, either native or JS, are boolean tag based and have metadata editing rights based on trust (hosting hub gives them this), with 3 levels: auto/moderation/rollback.

NOTES for Developers:

This project uses technology to build a human network. There's a sense in which the simplicity is as important as the code. The project can grow to work in many different ways but the base has to be KISS. 

NOTES for journalists and media makers:

You retain complete control of what appears on your site. As the trust network builds, it will become higher quality and faster to administer.

Outcomes

From simple springs big rivers grow to feed the sea.

In my 30-year experience, I have seen too many alt-media projects grow, flower and fade away, without aggregating or archiving themselves into a state of permanence.

This project can play a crucial role in solving this, as hubs will not only be able to moderate the flows of news, they could achieve it, with no extra work, in a massively redundant distributed way. 

The same basic project and tech will work fine for the blog-rolls of sites, creating more “static” dynamic linked side bars. This will reboot the idea of “webrings”. 

It can also form the basis of identity. People are just a tagged data object that can be sorted into “flows”. This opens up social networking to creative thinking. 

Sites link to each other both though trust, the human side, and through links, the machine side. Both are a good opportunity for the open web to compete with the closed silos.

The networks of hub sites become portals in their own right, driving traffic to the root news orgs/blogs that feed them.

 

300 words

The Open Media Network is a KISS hybrid client server/peer2peer project to play a small role in revitalising the open web. It uses the tried and tested technology of RSS. Its initial focus will be around alternative media, enabling projects to grow and cross-fertilise alongside the social media corporate giants.

For the full background to the project see this http://hamishcampbell.com/en/home/-/blogs/open-media-netwo-1?

  • Stage one (6-12 months) basic linking and embedding programming, basic beta roll-out – the outlandish funding.

  • Stage two (6-12 months) is synchronising and meta-data editing, then expanding roll-out.

When we have basic working code, set up a number of exemplar hubs to beta test the project in the real world and push out embeds to existing real world alt-media sites.

This project is largely social technology. The tech part is configuration and repurposing existing CMS's and their plug-in architectures.

Pre-programming - there is a need to look at the existing code/plug-in base and spec out a number of roots to working aggregating CMS to seed development.

List the parts that need scripting/programming/configuring.

Work out the basic meta-data format (RSS/atom) 

These no exclusivly act as “seeds” for the aggregating hubs. They already have some of the basic functionality needed. Take this list to open source programming projects such as LINK etc.

As an open project built peer2peer, the core is to get a lot of people at different levels of expertise working on each bit and run them all in parallel. There is no right answer and no signal point of use/failure.

 visionOntv project can offer to match the funding coming from outlandish.

I take this comment from a famous programmer as a complement "feels dated in the language and tech" that’s the point ;)

--------------------------

Briefly describe what support in addition to funding you would require to make your project a reality. This could include people with other skills, or office or event space.

The funding is nice to keep focus, but the core help is the links and knowledge network that outlandish provides. The content and media side we can handel. The running of aggregation we have been doing for over 20 years, over many generations of failing alt-tech. At the moment we only have youtube play lists and embeds, this is a crap situation, not to say embarrassing state of alt-media.

Is (client server) p2p torrent infrastructure failing?

There are lots of sites down, lots of fake files etc.

A colleague Richard Hering has posted a number of music videos to YouTube. As these contain a synchronised score of complex music, they have unique educational value. Sony recently blocked a number of these in no less than 244 countries. “Sony have bought up a 50 year old recording they never made and now take it down wherever it is shared”.

He also uploads to torrent sites, where such very old culture (for instance the music of Johann Sebastian Bach) is popular, and should surely be treated as a common heritage.“People need to share, it's a basic need I think”. He used to upload such videos to Piratebay, but this has not accepted registrations for a while now. He uploaded it to Kickass and and some people still find it there, but the Piratebay has not indexed it and and you cannot even find it on google. The crackdown on piracy has lead to the proxy universe being full of poorly indexed and fake sites. The proxy "copies" are not mirrors....

This is looking to me like we have a crisis in the client server side of P2P, which might be about morale and the burn out of the open generation. ISP blocking is probably driving down ad revenue… Google is now pushing down real torrents, which means it's pushing up fake torrents. It's a shadow or a corpse of a P2P network.

[Richard Hering adds a note here: it's very important not to underestimate the problems which google is now causing. I searched my popular torrent on a number of search engines, just using its title plus the word "torrent". The results:

1. Duckduckgo.com - first on page one.

2. Yahoo - first on page one

3. Bing - 4th on page one

4. Google - page 7! Despite tracking my activity and selecting what I see on that basis, which ought to push the result up.

So Google is suppressing torrents. In future I think I will use duckduckgo, as it does no tracking. I already use it on the phone, as it blocks ads.]

Without tech activism, I think this p2p world is ending. It will continue "submerged" inside the #dotcons. But another part of the open web fades. That was what true p2p applications such as RetroShare were about. Escaping from the silos of torrent sites. True p2p might still be an option but would need activism to push it into mainstream view. It's a little harder to setup, but it's not rocket science, use it or lose it is the mantra and we have lost lots. “I remember Peter Sunde from tpb saying that it wouldn't be a bad thing if torrents got killed off - it would force innovation” But the question we beg “only if we innovate".

RetroShare would solve these issues and it "innovates" human networks as a useful "side effect". But a German court has tried to ban it. However RetroShare is just p2p encryption, which is basic to the web, so can't be banned, with out huge clateral damage to the #dotcoms, especially if used for something legal.

https://torrentfreak.com/anonymous-file-sharing-ruled-illegal-by-german-court-121123

“A court in Hamburg, Germany, has granted an injunction against a user of the anonymous and encrypted file-sharing network RetroShare . RetroShare users exchange data through encrypted transfers and the network setup ensures that the true sender of the file is always obfuscated.”

The issue here is human error: he added the promedia as a direct friend. To quote TorrentFreak “Promedia posed as a “friend” of the respondent. The decision of LG Hamburg is not compelling.”

We live in a world now where the younger people (early 20s) are possibly part of the post-P2P generation for whom the internet is facebook etc

What a thought.

A OMN post for geeks

Climate change and our basic environment are running away with our future.  The technology network that could help to save us is splintering. We are fucked, the open web, the thing all progressive geeks build on has plateaued and is visible fading.

A project to play a small role.

It's about stupidly simple and naively open it's an original open Internet Project.

Lest we forget the original Internet was people creating pages linking to people created pages this is what the world wide web is. Networking human beings creating communities using technology.

If you make this too complex to start with you miss the point it's about people and communities facilitated by technology it's not about technology facilitating people and communities.

The difference might seem small but it's important as it's the difference between the original Internet and the intranets that grew up and dominated before the open human powered web swept them away.

Geeks not knowing what they have been doing have been destroying this web of humanity and replacing it with a web of machines clever but inhuman.

If you want to reboot a human Internet it needs to be human first rather than machine first. There is a real challenge for geeks to understand this as it flows against their mindset. CP Snows two cultures is still dominant a strong but invisible flow.

If we are to reboot the open web, we need to put human beings activity, community and empowerment at the root. The counter intuitive is to get humans to do more, not less, as we find the basic satisfaction in life by actively creating the world we live in.

The wiki, the blog, the link, the website.

Don't look down on simple

Put people to work doing something they find meaningful, algorithms can stand in the way as much as they can help here.

All community is based on “open standards” that are widely shared. It's the sharing that makes a standard.

Care for the soil as everything to do with the life world comes from it. To move this forward we need to nurture and create the soil of the open internet. All the high tech seeds you are in love with are falling on barren soil.

To nurture this, one stream would be a human powered semantic web that is based on already widely shared “standards”.  

Many streams, nature loves diversity and simplistic often pushes over complex.

The OMN is a spring, a stream, a river.

The Base idea works with media items (posts) , sites (community's), people (identity).

It digs history and memory deeply into the network without extra work or much thought (through widely distributed redundant data)

At each stage it empowers the individual, the community and fundamentally horizontalists this empowerment.

Geeks can of course build streams of complex from this common soil.

Just as the original web did it is a stream to expand the commons. From its flow life can grow, such a simple project could help save us all.

And build a world based on linked semantic data.

Build simple, build trust, the is power in open.

OMN link

The spring (OMN) - The river of news project

Am not going to say anything you probably do not know in this application so will keep it short.

The project has been inspired by the technical work and ideas of Dave Winer (http://scripting.com) and the practical media work and open web projects of Hamish Campbell (http://visionon.tv and http://hamishcampbell.com)

The aim of the project is to play a small part in overcoming the mind space gap that is highlighted on the side of my blog:

“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”

Its a no-brainer to say that the open web is failing as more of our mind share is taken up by closed networks such as #failbook and propitiatory “eco systems” such as apple, google, Amazon, Microsoft etc.

If we are to play a meaningful role is saving the commons we all build on we need a raft of projects and more impotently basic infrastructure to help re-boot the open web to push these encloses back. We need to cross the river talked about above, this is much harder than it looks, if you haven’t tried it you probably wont appreciate the difficulty involved.

Rivers, streams and springs and useful metaphors for understanding how we look at “news”.

* The springs are our blogs, our company pages etc.

* The streams are aggregaters based on subjects, our twitter streams and #failbook walls badly for-fill this role

* The rivers are currently our old mainstream media and increasingly the enclosing areas of #failbook and #dotcons.

I have a open standards based project to play a role in building up “news” outside of the #silos and will still work inside the silos so the is little to lose.

The OMN

Todo Europa boat trip

Before:

 

* Finish kitchen

- crow bar

- make wood structure (Y)

- find table top

- test fridge

- sink waste connection

- put in window

- insulation

- hooks for cups and pans, drying rack

- sheet of hardboard for wall

 

- stool

 

* Electrics

- socket kitchen, wood stove, toilet

- look at underfloor, think about moving

- roof power, light

 

* wind mill email

 

* floor

- look at ballast and storage

 

* sought clothes

 

* look at servicing engine + buy parts.

- deal with fuel leak

 

* look at new ropes?

 

* Fire place lower (complex)

 

* For the trip

- Facebook page for Thames, Medway, Coast, Crossing, North France

- Paul about the convoy

 

* Life Raft and Flare?

* Ask to buy 2 life jacket

 

* Tidy

- clear the seats and back

 

 

* Thames

Book lock

Tell CRT I left their waters

Look at tides and time

Fill up with fuel

Program radio with more resets

Redundant Navigation on black laptop.

 

* Medway

- the mud or the party

- tender?

 

 

* Coast

- talk to coast guard

- look for ports

 

* Crossing

- talk to coast guard

- bit of research

 

* French port

- what papers?

- Wallets of ships papers

- inshoreces

- licence river

- Vat paid, VAT fuel

To escape our silo thinking

“A river that needs crossing political and tech culture - On the political side, the is arrogance and ignorance, on the Geek side the is naivety and over- complexity”

 

What am highlighting here, Geeks think this is to simple to think about, the politicos have no understanding of this. Both are happy with silos as it gives them “total control” of there tiny things. These isolated siloed islands are no match for the continents that the dotcons control. The issue here is that nobody cares for the big thing that all these tiny things grow from, this big thing “the open internet” is withered from neglect. The shrinking “open internet” is further perverted by political legislation and Dotcon grasping/enclosing it becomes a ghost of its old self.

 

Thinking to escape this sad and bad fate.

 

The web is made of links:

 

* Articles are just data objects

 

* Data flows

 

* Feeds are living links to move data object flows

 

* The link is were the value is (google learned this a long time ago)

 

* Synchronisation and redundancy of data is key to resilience and remembering the past links (value)

 

This is hard for the politicos to hear, but, content is just something to link to.

 

This simple thinking is held safe by the 4 opens.

 

The is a small resurgence of alt-media projects (such as LINKS ) but each of them is a silo and will likely flower and fade.

Hope filled tributary's feeding fresh water to the polluted mainstream

DRAFT of 3 examples of “working” contemporary alternatives and their malcontent’s.


The Village Butty
A lovely project provided originally by a hard-working individual with small funding and continuing energy. The need, boaters need a warm dry open common place, if their unique contemporary “village” culture is to survive the long term slow and grinding pushing out of CRT and local councils, not to menturn the self inflicted internal sabotage of its own often mad dispoleing crews.

The village butty is a re-booting/rebrinding of the older james's butty for hiar, the early project had burned out then faded due to the the off balance of money making outreach and community value boater use. In the end it alienated both and with a waning of good will and no money coming in the butty was going to be sold. A new younger more energetic crew came in to save the day, with a real crowed funding outreach, boater community lead, the butty was saved.

But the is a denial/unknowing of the need to balance/manage community that is pushing this out of balance to the money making side (fair anufe the failer of this side of the balance was the resion for the need for the reboot). But if this understandable swing reaction is not brought back into balance then the good will of the community side of sustainability  balance will be lost and with out this it becomes harder to keep a boat working on the water, aspesheraly in such a small place as London. The boater community provides the couler and direct practical support when needed, as well as its own headaches ;)

This needs a community hart-hart gathering to unblock the constipation that is currently blocking the shit from coming out, a bit of composting will need to be preprepared for this gathering for the resulting smell not to drive people away.


The London Hackspace
One of the few continuing/ongoing “secessess” of alt-DIY organising in the UK. It is not only a fantastic place full of interesting, competent and active people, its organised in a way/model for how grassroots could be expanded out to fill in more social spaces.

Was originally set-up and run by a competent invisible affinity group as the space grew this became an opaque affinity group, with suseass and increasing membership this opaque group became visibly dysfunctional due to dilution and burn out of the original core crew. Affinity organising, while still core, was submerged into bureaucracy, hard rules and angry trolls hitting each other with them filled the online spaces and left the real world space dulled and filled with low level broken.

The space continues and a big smoky flare up and resulting gathering helped to resolve the surface issues, but the underlining fractures have not been addressed to truly sustain the project, lets hope it survives the move to the next premisses and continues to grow and mutate.



The Hive Dalston
This one started well but fell into an ideological clash that became hidden in a smoke screen of personalty politics. The lack of any clear vision made it impossible to resolve as the underlining tensions were blocked from being spoken. One side pushed the other aside and took over sole running of the project, it became a ideologically driven shadow of what it needed to be, in this it moved to being part of the problem rather than part of the solution, making it hard to continue to support the project in any way.

This is not beyond rescue, and the balance between (selfish/stupid) evil and (open/growing) good is still in the air. One solution, a moment of evil, a bit of power politics would put this project back on track, light and dark need each other, some times the devil is right.

 

Conclusion

To move all these projects on we need to reknit the broken bones of the past.

 

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