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Relying on algorithms for biosecurity

what extent will we rely on algorithms to sustain social distancing as we move into an intermediate phase of biosecure vigilance rather than biosecurity crisis? What would this reliance exclude? Can we develop collective habits of coordinating ourselves in shared spaces to the same degree if algorithms are orchestrating the underlying dynamics of the process?

The return of normality

One of the key fault lines in post-pandemic politics is likely to be the return of ‘normality’. The pandemic won’t have an off switch, as this useful piece explains. If ‘herd immunity’ is achieved it will likely be a fleeting achievement within national boundaries, leaving countries bound up in a logic of biosecurity which could intersect in worrying ways with the neo-nationalism which precedes the pandemic.

Post-pandemic reconstruction

I’ve been thinking a lot about what reconstruction will look after pandemic, as well as how it will compare to older periods of social reconstruction. There’s something of this captured in Anne Helen Petersen’s newsletter last night about the potential significance of online communities after the pandemic. Will the trend of bowling alone be reversed as we begin to leave the crisis stage of COVID-19?

The creative freedom of post-work

From Post-Capitalist Desire by Mark Fisher, pg 77: I just think about the Beatles. What does a post-work society look like? It kind of looks like what life was like for them, doesn’t it? They didn’t have to work. They’d made enough money, surely, by the early Sixties to just […]

The sublime high of visibility

This monologue from speed-fuelled gonzo journalist Cameron Colley in Iain Banks’ 1993 novel Complicity suggested something interesting to me about social media. Have social platforms made this accessible to the masses while simultaneously cheapening it by leading us from who gets to speak to who gets heard?

New Book: Post-Human Futures

This volume engages with post-humanist and transhumanist approaches to present an original exploration of the question of how humankind will fare in the face of artificial intelligence. With emerging technologies now widely assumed to be calling into question assumptions about human beings and their place within the world, and computational […]

What big tech knows about your children

The digital platforms you and your family use every day — from online games to education apps and medical portals — may be collecting and selling your children’s data, says anthropologist Veronica Barassi. Sharing her eye-opening research, Barassi urges parents to look twice at digital terms and conditions instead of blindly accepting them — and to demand protections that ensure their kids’ data doesn’t skew their future.