Links for Resilience #2

Security

In Baltimore and Beyond, a Stolen N.S.A. Tool Wreaks Havoc - The New York Times This is a good reminder that the tools and processes we create may not remain in our control forever. Our threat models should include considering who might get access, whether due to espionage, bankruptcy/foreclosure, acquisition, leadership change, etc. How might they use and abuse those assets? What protections do we have in place?


Sustainability

Insulin is becoming financially unattainable for many people who need it, with a price that is far out of line with the production costs. “Open Insulin Project” is looking to change that. Biohackers work on do-it-yourself insulin


“Why did we make technology that will live for 18 months, die, and never rot?”

Modern Intellectual Property laws have contributed to an ever-worsening model of “disposable technology” and forced obsolescence. One of the worst aspects is devices where key parts (such as batteries) cannot be replaced. As an example story, read: AirPods Are a Tragedy. We need to create technologies that can be maintained, repaired, and updated.


Speaking of intellectual property, EFF warns that A Terrible Patent Bill is On the Way, and requests support.


Low-Tech magazine has a couple articles about how modern wind power installations are not often actually sustainable, along with some ways we might be able to change that.

Society

I recently learned about CASBS, which has an incredible collaborative & querying model for research fellowships. More here: Center for Advanced Study in the Behavioral Sciences - Wikipedia


An interesting comic about the meaning and signaling of modern men’s apparel.


Strong Opinions Loosely Held Might be the Worst Idea in Tech - The Glowforge Blog If we want real conversation, we have to be more honest about our level of confidence. Our community and decisions will be better for it.

Self

A Better Information Diet (Ed Batista) Wow. This is an excellent summary of the main vulnerabilities that the attention economy is exploiting, as well as some things we can do to counter those attacks. It’s a longer read but very much worth it. (Think of it as attention practice!)


Interesting: there’s a potential for MDMA to become approved as a prescription therapy for PTSD. Can efforts to bottle MDMA’s magic transform psychiatry? - The Verge

Also, remember the scare about Ecstasy rotting brains? Oops:

Five months after Congress passed its anti-rave legislation, Ricaurte reported that he’d mistakenly given his animals meth, not MDMA, and retracted the paper. The fiasco, described as an “almost laughable laboratory blunder,” got its own chapter in the book When Science Goes Wrong: Twelve Tales from the Dark Side of Discovery. But the damage had been done. Federal officials continued to bankroll their preoccupation with proving that MDMA causes brain damage while ignoring known risks along with its healing potential.

Summary

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