~e; Electromagnetic News & Views #159

From brian carroll <human@electronetwork.org>
Date Fri, 14 Jan 2005 21:06:18 -0600

Electromagnetic News & Views -- #159

00) Electronetwork.org Commentary (01/14/2005)

01) Top Stories of Electromagnetism
02) Electromagnetic health & safety
03) Electromagnetic trash & treasure
04) Electromagnetic security & surveillance
05) Electromagnetic power & energy
06) Electromagnetic current & human affairs
07) Electromagnetic transport & communication
08) Electromagnetic matter & information
09) Electromagnetic trends & inventions
10) Electromagnetic weaponry & warfare
11) Electromagnetic business & economics
12) Electromagnetic artworks & artifacts

00) --commentary--

* Some people deny that products are designed to make
a profit on their obsolescence. Searching for a decent
drill, I found a case-in-point: cordless power tools.
Drills and other tools are now mostly cordless and if
used for hobbyist (not daily, professional) work, it is
likely that over time the rechargable batteries which
provide power to these devices will wear out, or so a
salesperson warned. Batteries for cordless tools cost
in the .US $60 range. The old, expired batteries (ni-
cads, too) may even go to a landfill if just thrown out.
The power tool eventually will need another battery, and
it is thus another cost to factor in when purchasing a
tool. Advice was given to invest in tools that all are
of the same voltage and brand so that batteries can be
swapped amoung them. A corded power drill was much less
advanced (seemingly the same design as 20 years ago) and
yet costs were comparable to these other drills, without
any design benefits, except a better investment in terms
of power and cost over the lifetime of the device. The
ease of use of the cordless drills cost environmentally
and economically much moreso than an older corded drill.
The gain is in freedom of movement and location, which
may be needed in many cases. Though as a 'standard' for
power drills, having cordless power tools and not corded
has huge societal, environmental, economic, cultural costs.
Went for a small cordless screwdriver instead of a drill,
for what was needed, a replacment battery for it costs
more than the device itself. So when it comes time to
replace the battery, it will be cheaper to throw it out
and start over again. How can such a business be legal?

* regarding digital cameras: it would seem that cameras
are still conceived mainly as extensions of film-based
technology. different lenses are needed to alter what
is captured by the camera, while there are 'sepia' and
other 'modes' as a novelty. whereas a imaging chip could
likely be developed to allow a wider range of lightsources,
including ultraviolet and infra-red (UV/IR) as part of the
electronics circuitry. also, because of electronics, time-b
based photography should be much easier, time-elapsed and
long-exposure, so that new types of photography can be
explored that goes beyond the unique limitations of film
cameras. a timer-based small format camera made which can
be placed on a kite, a camera for long-exposure daylight
photography, for thermal imaging, and potentially even
'standard' filters could be possible via software which
analyzes and (pre-/post-) processes imagery in camera.
for instance, what if a camera had 'neutural density'
adaptability, or prism effects based on light, somewhat
like a short-set of standard lenses, which could replace
the 'sepia' and other nostalgic recreations (for 'old
tyme' photo simulations). also, photo technology which
could better capture electronics displays (such as a
neon display, or streetlights) would be helpful for
any who are not professionals yet like to try to
capture the mundane landscapes. one technique that
is possible with digital cameras is to put a camera
with its LCD display opened, atop a monopod and hold
it about 10 feet in the air and capturing images from
this perspective by way of a timer/delay. if a camera
had a remote wireless (bluetooth/802.11g) LCD display,
one could see the photo the camera will capture without
having to guess what the shot is like 10' up. or even
on a model plane or on a bicycle, car, or a motorcyle.
so too with flashes, is it possible new types of flashes
could be integrated in digital cameras, such as an IR
flash for an IR digital camera setting, or even types
of multi-colored LED flashes (related to lens issues).
these types of innovations could change perceptions of
digital photography, too. it may already be happening.

01) --top stories--

Nick Coleman: 'Pay-to-play' writers need to be stopped // **  

	'Money always talks. But when it goes underground to finance hidden  
attacks, it also corrupts. Which is why any columnist or commentator  
who weighs in on politics and public policy should be required to  
promptly and fully disclose whether they are being paid to promulgate  
their views.' .... 'Most mainstream commentators know that taking money  
under the table will mean not getting paid by their employer much  
longer. But in our blog new world, not everybody discloses their hand,  
or their motivations..'

Resonance. The Electromagnetic Bodies Project // (congratulations!)
Curators : Nina Czeglady and Louise Provencher

	'Electromagnetic Bodies is an interdisciplinary collaboration,  
providing an opportunity for the participating artists to reflect on  
their own practice in the light of scientific research. With Nikola  
Tesla's (1856-1943) pioneering work as a point of departure, the  
primary objective of the Electromagnetic Bodies project is to consider  
the human body simultaneously as a source, an echo, a transmitter and  
as a point of resistance to electromagnetic waves. Considering the long  
history of imaginary and concrete automata, culminating in the present  
concept of the cyborg and the post-human issues, one may consider the  
need of re-interpretations of the issues of expression, gesture and  
agency in the context of body immersion in the electromagnetic realm.'

Environmental Activist Say Sound Wave Research
Off Yucatan Peninsula Threatens Marine Life

02-- electromagnetic health & safety

Vending machine industry aims at obesity
	'The industry is promoting the "Snackwise Nutrition Rating System,"  
developed by Columbus Children's Hospital in Columbus, Ohio.' .. 'The  
software evaluates the nutrition content of food based on calories,  
fat, sugar, protein, fiber, calcium, iron and vitamins A and C. A snack  
is assigned a point value, which is then translated into a color. Green  
is "best choice," yellow is "choose occasionally" and red is "choose  

Group: Don't Give Kids Cell Phones // "precautionary approach"

Torture to uncover brain secrets
Volunteers are to undergo torture to see if faith eases pain.

	'A team of neurologists, pharmacologists and anatomists will ...  
analyse how people react by using brain scans.'

Mind Over Matter: Patients Put on Thinking Caps // overview **
Brain-computer interface technology continues to advance, with one  
patient now able to control a robotic hand with his thoughts. New  
research shows such results may also be possible with a noninvasive,  
external interface.

	'If people with physical handicaps could control a computer by just  
thinking, they could also operate light switches, television, even a  
robotic arm -- something the 160,000 people in the United States who  
can't move their arms and legs would surely welcome.'

03-- electromagnetic trash & treasure

Recyclers Discover Cash-Filled ATM

04-- electromagnetic security & surveillance

// the paragraph beginning 'One could suggest three intersecting areas'  
// to me, a synopsis of sociological relations (online the Internet)  
// quote: ... 'A sense of mastery is generated through the contemporary
// popular media, where the spectator is infused with an artificial
// sense of control over the machine and an exterior world represented
// on the screen. Within the perfect world of the operational system,
// reality is subsumed within the dictates of the interface.' ...
// should be published in the New Yorker and-or the Atlantic Monthly.
// most everything in it directly relates to electromagnetism, too,
// and it is amazing to read such an integrative sense of events...

OPERATIONAL MEDIA. Jordan Crandall // *** (amazing. hyperinsightful...)

	'This essay is about a unique modality of the spectacle that has  
emerged in this era of new security machines and mobile apparatuses of  
engagement.' [and] 'As a conceptual and material apparatus of  
engagement, operational mediation has always been about the detection  
and strategic codification of movement, and the development of  
maneuvers of strategic positionality. Against many of the orientations  
of virtual discourses over the last decade, which have often situated  
virtuality in terms of delocalization and disembodiment, its tradition  
is one of precise locational and temporal specificity. In this sense,  
operational media can be thought to serve as a *reaffirmation* of  
positionality and place.  It plays an important role in the resurgence  
of temporal and locational specificity witnessed in new surveillance  
and location-aware navigational technologies.'

Spy Another Day: Realm MPS // Mobile Personal Server (MPS)  

Hacker 'Gets More' From T-Mobile 

	'A hacker broke into a wireless carrier's network over at least seven  
months and read e-mails and personal computer files of hundreds of  
customers, including the Secret Service agent investigating the  
intruder, the government said Wednesday.'

[and] Hacker read Secret Service e-mails // via cryptome.org
Agent resigned after personal computer compromised

05-- electromagnetic power & energy


06-- Electromagnetic current & human affairs

Robot makers say World Cup will be theirs by 2050

	'A Japanese consortium of robotics experts has thrown down the  
gauntlet to future players of the beautiful game by claiming their  
engineered humans will play mankind off the park within 45 years.' ....  
'One area that researchers are not keen on tackling, however, is robot  

Historical Society gets rare Bob Dylan tape // ** bugmenot.com

	'A rare 1960 recording of Bob Dylan that would likely make a bundle in  
a Sotheby's auction is instead now a part of the Minnesota Historical  
Society archives, thanks to a Minneapolis man.' .. 'Known to Dylan  
bootleg collectors as the "Minnesota Party Tape," the 12-song recording  
was donated to the Historical Society last week by Cleve Pettersen, who  
kept it at the back of a drawer for many years.'

07-- electromagnetic transport & communication

// might the dynamics of spam/virii change if encrypted?

Simple snoop-proof email launched // Ciphire

Roboshark to hunt tourists // *** via engadget.com

	'Roboshark's companions will include a shoal of robotic tuna - dubbed  
Tintuna - and a collection of robotic sting rays.' .. 'Andrew Sneath  
will programme all the fish to behave in as natural a way as possible.'  
.. '"The Tintuna school like real fish," Mr Sneath said. "They have  
cameras in their eyes, and will group together when they see the shark  
as a protective measure."' .. 'Roboshark will also be programmed to  
chase the tuna, but only if it sees a lone fish moving on its own.' ..  
'"If a tuna leaves the group, the shark will chase it," said Mr Sneath.  
"And if it catches one, it will stun it. The fish will go all catatonic  
and float to the surface for a while.' .. '"And our stingrays won't  
like light - if a diver shines a torch on them, they will shoot for  

08-- electromagnetic matter & information

Multi-core competency // new chips, programmers needed...

Big bang sound waves explain galaxy clustering // ripple per .5 billion

	'But beginning about 400,000 years after the big bang, the universe  
had expanded and cooled enough for electrons and protons in the fog to  
start combining into neutral hydrogen. That freed both the photons -  
which became the ancient "afterglow" of light seen by astronomers - and  
the trapped sound waves to travel unimpeded through space.' ..  
'"Instead of ringing, the waves kept going," says Daniel Eisenstein, an  
SDSS team member at the University of Arizona, US. He says it took  
about 600,000 years for most of the trapped photons to be freed, so the  
sound waves from these "overdense" regions would have travelled about  
500,000 light years when the ringing stopped.'

Artist/Scientist 'Dream Team' Assembles With Goal Of Capturing
And Displaying Gigapixel-sized Images // ** NYU Big Picture Summit

	'The project has two parts. The first is to design and build a new  
camera, expanding on concepts embodied in the R1, that can capture a  
gigapixel of digital information at a speed of 1/15th of a second or  
faster.' .. 'The second part is to create the display system, which  
Ross likens to building an “electronic Sistine ceiling.” It will have  
16 times greater data display capabilities than one currently in use at  
Sandia, among the world’s most advanced. The display would provide an  
overall view of images at a very large scale while allowing viewers to  
perceive extremely fine detail.'

09-- electromagnetic trends & inventions

Improved image-shrinking technology claimed // 28% less JPEG

Transistor Genetics: Scientists At The Weizmann Institute
Use DNA To Assemble Nanosized Electronic Parts

10-- electromagnetic weaponry & warfare

U.S. seeks to restart nuclear talks // N. Korea post-Bolton diplomacy...

<nettime> Operational Media // (war, strategy, media, perception)

	'In the end, the workings of operational mediation -- borne of a  
formal programming logic, of the primacy of pattern over presence, and  
of the agonistic calculus of tactics and maneuver -- cannot be  
understood by formal linguistic meanings alone.  It calls for us to  
recognize a dimension of *affect*:  an axis of intensity that underlies  
the symbolic register, continually confounding politics of  
representation.  To attempt to accommodate this dimension is to enter  
the domain of contradictions, where violence can be both horrific and  
pleasurable, and where surveillance can be voyeurism.  It is the realm  
where one secretly thrills to the potential spectacle of crime, and  
where danger is not only avoided but also secretly courted.  It is the  
realm of the disaster imaginary and the criminal unconscious, played  
out in the "adventure factor" in military recruitment advertisements,  
immersive games, and extreme sports.  It is the "morbid curiosity" we  
feel when, present in the aftermath of a violent act, we have to look,  
but we don't want to see.  It requires the acknowledgement of danger as  
a constitutive element of attraction:  the unpredictable, dangerous web  
of intrigue that pulls us into the narrative world.'

Pilotless aircraft protects Sharon // via drudgereport.com

11-- electromagnetic business & economics

[general] Will We Ever Learn?  By Stewart Brand
Jared Diamond says society's future depends on what we take from the  

Wholesale Prices Slump on Energy Costs // .US

Prediction: India, China will be economic giants

	'... In general, the council says the risk of great-power conflict is  
lower than at any time in the past century, but that as China, India  
and other growing powers improve their weaponry, the world's most  
powerful nations may be increasingly tempted to engage in pre-emptive  

The Shadow Internet // thanks * (see graphic)
They take a single stolen file and pump out bootleg media by the  
millions. Inside the pirate networks that are terrorizing the  
entertainment industry.

12-- electromagnetic artworks & artifacts

Circuit by Amanda Downs // Woodburned panel. interesting...

Art appreciation 2005: // via artsjournal.com (amazon/e-bay of art?)
Log on and print out affordable art that's good

	'This month, [Spokane painter Megan Murphy] launched Artocracy.org, a  
new link between artists and a previously untapped audience.' .. 'The  
audience gets good art in the $20 to $50 range. If the site catches on,  
featured artists could end up with incomes worthy of the name. "I think  
$2,000 to $5,000 a month would be nice," she said. "I also think it's  

3 Photographs by Jana Freiband // EM nightlight...

Expert rebuffs Hockney claim that Old Masters traced their paintings

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