> but aren't you excited about the possibilities of technology? why are you always down about tech

look. at heart i'm a socialist technocrat. of course i believe in the power of tools, but i am extremely not hyped about fascists using tools.


voice assistants are a great example of tech that could be awesome. imagine if the AI behind siri or alexa just never called home, never putting your data at risk. but instead the AI doesn't live on your phone, really. you only receive an extant client who only knows how to phone home, resulting in massive breaches and liabilities with the police because of talkative listening devices.

and yet, for many people, it is still the most accessible way to use a computer.

tech under capitalism sucks 

the tragedy of tech, hardware and software, under capitalism is that its sole purpose becomes to disenfranchise labor. to replace workers, to cut off workers from decision-making, and otherwise to protect the institutions of rent and property.

of course, without rent and property and disenfranchisement, reducing the amount of labor necessary for general economic operations is a great boon. shorter shifts without loss of pay, for example.

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tech under capitalism sucks 

@garbados under capitalism everything starts or turns into shit

tech under capitalism sucks 

@garbados I was at a virtual nanosat conference recently (the conference was virtual, not the nanosats), and they kept talking about "the Internet of Things in Space"

motherfucker what? Are you connecting your satellites to wifi-enabled coffeemakers? Or are you talking about an inter-satellite meshnet, in which case why not just call it that?

re: tech under capitalism sucks 

@RedFuture because "intersatellite meshnet" is too hard for the investors to think about 🙃

re: tech under capitalism sucks 

@garbados also the orbits don't work if you don't put the branded coffee pods in

seriously though it was billed as a scientific and hobbyist conference! There isn't even a big investment market for pocketqubes! Has the business-speak just rotted their brain to the point it's automatic?

re: tech under capitalism sucks 

@RedFuture No one really wants to think about engineering because it's too expensive to build good things, and even to build shitty things you need investment. So they lean on tired and meaningless expressions like "internet of things" to mean literally anything that is connected to a network, because that's the only point of reference bizdev types have for networking infrastructure.

@garbados even there I can see a technical argument for having it client/server – the AI runs better in a data centre than on a phone, it's more efficient to centralise processing, whatever – but as long as the server is controlled by a computer landlord it can't be trusted by anybody

@aeonofdiscord right. all technical arguments for this architecture are ethically hollow. like, well we had to build the listening device this way or it wouldn't be efficient. hear me out: don't build listening devices.

@garbados In building "Rhapsode", I find myself telling people that they really don't need to call him to perform the computation! I've studied this...

I understand why companies keep some of the recordings, but it'd be more respectful to talk with the users facing the bug like we normally do on "issue trackers".

@garbados In fact, Siri is mostly present on the device. It's one of the reasons why Siri's results are less good than Google assistant's.


To pick one example, Siri examines e-mail on the device, whereas Google analyzes everything in your Gmail account on their servers and keeps a log of everything you buy for which you receive an e-mail receipt.


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