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"the mobile social fin de siècle"
April 19, 2012 8:51 AM   Subscribe

The Jig Is Up: Time to Get Past Facebook and Invent a New Future - After five years pursuing the social-local-mobile dream, we need a fresh paradigm for technology startups. "This isn't about startup incubators or policy positions. It's not about "innovation in America" or which tech blog loves startups the most. This is about how Internet technology used to feel like it was really going to change so many things about our lives. Now it has and we're all too stunned to figure out what's next. So we watch Lana Del Ray turn circles in a thousand animated gifs."
posted by flex (9 comments total) 10 users marked this as a favorite

 
The Singularity is officially here and now.
posted by infini at 8:57 AM on April 19, 2012


Maybe we should just stop starting up technologies and start using them right. For instance, federate Facebook, Twitter, YouTube etc for privacy (not to mention scalability and reliability) reasons1. Standardize ebooks in a useful way. Open cell phone networks. A la carte cable lineups. Etc, etc, etc.

Make it the Century of the Human Being and make technology actually work for people rather than making it work just well enough that people will use it and Huge Corp gets rich.

1 I know federated versions of some of these exist. Now use them.
posted by DU at 9:02 AM on April 19, 2012 [15 favorites]


I see. And exactly where can I obtain said gifs...?
posted by d1rge at 9:54 AM on April 19, 2012


And exactly where can I obtain said gifs...?

Lana Del Ray Dancing (FTFA)

Oh, the Video Games singer ... huh.
posted by mrgrimm at 10:20 AM on April 19, 2012


DU: "Make it the Century of the Human Being and make technology actually work for people rather than making it work just well enough that people will use it and Huge Corp gets rich."

Socialism with a human face didn't work in Czechoslovakia, and I have a feeling Capitalism with human face won't end up succeeding in the 21st century, either.

*sigh*
posted by symbioid at 11:25 AM on April 19, 2012


Yes, not much of interest is happening in our culture anymore except people’s lives are filled with more and more tiny time wasters. That’s what we’re spending all our brainpower and dollars on.
posted by bongo_x at 11:26 AM on April 19, 2012 [1 favorite]


Yes, not much of interest is happening in our culture anymore except people’s lives are filled with more and more tiny time wasters. That’s what we’re spending all our brainpower and dollars on.

Oh wait, the quote I'm thinking of was related to *gasp* communism
posted by infini at 11:34 AM on April 19, 2012


I liked Tom Ewing's take on this piece:

This may all be true but, ah, so what? Expecting a paradigm shift every five years isn’t “disruptive” or “innovative”, it’s just greedy.

What’s actually been happening in the last five years may be bad for tech-oriented neophiliacs but tech’s loss is culture’s (and commerce’s I guess) gain. The filtering and diffusion of already-invented stuff through society is still ongoing, and frankly a pause while we get a grip on what it means economically, culturally, and politically is a good idea. (Tech writers think they have a handle on all that stuff too, of course, but I don’t believe that’s true.)

posted by rory at 12:50 PM on April 19, 2012 [1 favorite]


...I have a feeling Capitalism with human face won't end up succeeding in the 21st century, either.

Consolidated flamed out pretty badly in the mid-90s, but before doing so, the title track from their Friendly Fascism album has proven to be prophetic:

"Welcome, ladies and gentlemen, to the end of the twentieth century and the arrival of friendly fascism. Regrettably, millions will die as before. But just think of the tremendous selection and savings you'll gain. Of course the loss of freedom and democracy are tragedies, I know, but consider the enterainment value contained within and to remind you, it is you, the people, who have mandated this course of our fate so please come with me..."
posted by stannate at 2:23 PM on April 19, 2012 [1 favorite]


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