The Saddest Little Carnival in the World

There’s a thin strip of land in the Jersey City Heights wedged between the street and the edge of the baseball field near the reservoir.  A few times a year, a carnival, of sorts, will encamp in that one-block-long urban landscape, transforming the area into the saddest little carnival in the world — filled with emptiness and longing and no joy to be had anywhere for any ticket price.  Even the Fire Ball circle roller coaster has no flame.

Continue reading → The Saddest Little Carnival in the World

Panopticonic Consumerism or Mad Marketing?

Jamie Grace wrote this article.

The journalist Pete Warren noted in an article for The Guardian (UK) earlier this month that Google have duly noted, anticipated and are working toward solving the major problem that exists in attempting to link mobile Internet technology, social networking and online advertising. Google have developed their Orkut social networking application specifically for mobile phones – and so hope to dominate the most powerful form of advertising yet commercially developed – and in future, perhaps the most invasive as well as the most lucrative.

Continue reading → Panopticonic Consumerism or Mad Marketing?

Surveillance is Good for You

Jamie Grace wrote this article.

Police in the UK increasingly use new monitoring and tracking technology to capture burglars and ‘home invaders,’ as well as car thieves. Suburban houses in high-crime hotspots are turned into Panopticonic dens with enough camera equipment inside them to identify an offender wherever they move within a building.

Continue reading → Surveillance is Good for You

No Private Parts Privacy

With gasoline peaking at $4.00USD a gallon — more than twice as much as a year ago — it makes one wonder if that devastating blow to the commoner’s pocket is a governmental feint to hide the insidious loss of more valuable and basic liberties.

Continue reading → No Private Parts Privacy

Eyes on the Street in the Early Lives of Cities

In the early lives of cities, having “eyes on the street” was the prime way neighborhood crime was policed and thwarted. The classic, semiotic, image of that early neighborhood watch was the old woman leaning out the window, delicately balancing her elbows in a feather pillow on the windowsill as she watched the activity on the street below.

Continue reading → Eyes on the Street in the Early Lives of Cities