Categories
Philosophy

The Rank Psychological Absurdity of 21st Century European Imperialism

The whole sorry mess of this conflict strikes me as a psychological (as much as ideological) pathology that endlessly reproduces itself, not as a function or measure of its successes but as the heroic recharacterisation (as you reflect, above) of its failures and suffering. It is perhaps a little like a gyroscope that follows its […]

Categories
Alien Anthropology

War Crimes

It is quite unlikely that you do not know what is going on in Ukraine at the moment and notwithstanding that this is only the most recent of a long litany of horrors that neither belong uniquely to Russian military or even this particular moment in history, it is a terrible, terrible thing. We should […]

Categories
humanity

The Mad King

We have never before had such immediate and persistent access to the happening facts of any conflict. Even as the litany of horrors in Ukraine unfold before us, please remember that beyond whatever data is recorded and stored, each and all of us are the living memory, human experience and historical witnesses to these proliferating […]

Categories
technology

Machine Intelligence as Criminal Mastermind?

Context: The Criminal Potential of Artificial Intelligence Beyond autonomous cybernetic system as tool or aperture of adversarial vulnerability lies the distinct possibility of AI as malevolent criminal mastermind. Notwithstanding the current paucity of anything even vaguely resembling Artificial General Intelligence, and regardless of our best (and worst) aspirations to benchmark and bootstrap this technology into […]

Categories
technology

Cybersecurity’s Endless Spinning Wheel

Context: Utah cyberattacks on the rise as millions paid out in new ‘double-extortion’ ransomware schemes Does there ever come a point at which the accelerating combinatorial complexity of this context transcends human aptitude to comprehend and mitigate the hyper-inflating entropy of the problem-space? I imagine that as long as human brains, incentives and motivations are […]

Categories
technology

Engaging Ransomware

The perceived value of any particular information system, entity or artefact is directly proportional to the combined resources applied to protect it from unauthorised access. It is only as a function of the most simply-conceived models and idealised frameworks that such a dynamical system could ever remain static and unchanging. The reality is that complex […]

Categories
technology

Information Technology is Implicitly Insecure

The discussion that no one appears willing to have is that from the very inception of these information technologies, doubt and uncertainty has been endemic and irreducible. Turing’s proof of the implicit undecidability of computation took its recursive cues from Gödel’s prime number shenanigans in the Incompleteness proof. These systems are first and foremost open […]

Categories
technology

Ransomware Attacks On Hospitals: Acts of War?

Implicit and endemic grey-zone ambiguities mean that this might never be attributed to anything other than (yet) another heartlessly self-serving criminal enterprise that is leveraging the inflated value of hospitals and health data during a public health crisis. I expect there are some logical and legal hurdles in defining acts of war this way. Not […]

Categories
technology

Countering Influence Operations: An Enigma?

Context: Facebook: Recommended Principles for Regulation or Legislation to Combat Influence Operations It is a fascinating issue. I suggest that the complexity of the problem far outstrips these assertions of interdiction and oversight. We have seen pretty much the same thing happen in cyber security. Where a property or quality, if not the actual content, […]

Categories
Alien Anthropology

Is Law in a Symbiotic Relationship with Crime ?

In what ways does regulation, interdiction, surveillance and retrospective analysis or definition actually and inadvertently (re)produce the problems it seeks to diminish? Distinctions between legal and illegal are clearly and self-evidently important but in terms of comprehensive analysis and aspirations towards effective problem resolution they may also be a foundational misdirection. It is becoming clear […]

Categories
Alien Anthropology

Countering Fake Brands

This issue of Fake Brands and commercial “knock-offs” represents interesting problem. These clearly exist on a spectrum that begins with the dodgy Rolex bought from a street vendor and ends with potentially life-threatening fake medicines. Most solutions appear to be retrospective, reactive and post facto attempts to influence behaviour or punish those purposefully profiting from […]

Categories
culture

Social Computation, Complexity and the Constructive Necessity of Dissonance

Some reflections occurred to me while listening to this Santa Fe Institute podcast today: Rajiv Sethi on Stereotypes, Crime, and The Pursuit of Justice, What of questions concerning the nature of social, psychological and cultural value systems when considered as a unified whole? While it is clear that the aggregate macrostate of any particular system […]