I've had this motorcycle lift for well over eight years and I haven't used it the last 2-3 years; it's been sitting in the garage ,covered in junk. More recently I have decided to drag it out and repair it. The reason I haven't used it is because it is quite dangerous.
I stare through my laptop screen, unwilling – no determined not to focus. My unshaved chin rests on my arthritic hand. My dry lips uninterested in the fresh coffee steaming under me. I wait for the meds to kick in – it’s late now, 11:03 AM perhaps they are beginning to work – that is how I able to talk to you now.
Essay written for MFA in June 2019 (James Tregaskis all rights reserved)
Introduction Surveillance has been with us throughout western history. The use of technology opens up opportunities for covert activities. Increasingly sophisticated methodologies are employed with each advance in technology. In this paper I set out examples of surveillance, contrasting desirable and undesirable outcomes in its use. I present examples of recent and more sophisticated techniques of surveillance to raise the question – is surveillance out-of-control? Evidence suggests that the Internet has accelerated the advancement and aggregation of bad actors in the commercial arena to a toxic extent, a manifestation referred by commentators on surveillance as ‘surveillance capitalism’ . Could it be that the government-initiated high technology surveillance methods used on their populations are a good thing and perhaps necessary for the ultimate survival and benefit of mankind? The resultant asymmetry of power does not only lie in global corporations but is also held by governments. How has the evolution of surveillance and the questions it raised been dealt with by artists and how do they approach the subject?…
(white man, middle-class, 67 years old, raised as a Jew)
…. sends me (white man, middle-class, 66 years old, raised as a Roman Catholic)
an email in response to my previous email containing a link to an obscure video ‘The Melting Pot’, written by Neil Shand and Spike Milligan in 1975 . It is very dated and poor quality, comprising the two main characters, played by Milligan and John Bird – both wearing brown makeup and speaking in typecast ‘stupid Indian’/’Peter Sellers-esque’ accents.
The pilot show never saw the light of day after its first broadcast, despite many episodes having been recorded. Perhaps the BBC thought it was well below Spike Milligan’s usually funny standards. Perhaps its racist humour finally propelled it into the dustbin of history… At the time, many TV shows were being broadcasted, reflecting in full sight, the public’s appetite for racist comedy accepted in the mainstream.
Unwisely I sent it to the [old friend], he is a big fan of Spike Milligan.
So, in response to this, the [old friend] replies:
How about the fros [sic] in the audience in this? Come on…
[I’m] Reading this at the moment…
[person_b] chose this excellent book for her book group. You might like to read it?
Following my visit to IFSEC I spent the day at Orgcon 2019, organised by the Open Rights group. Meeting was held at the modest premises of the Friends Meeting House in Euston Road. Contrast this with the enormous IFSEC exhibition held in the Excel Centre in June. I’ve already written about IFSEC and recall how Tony Porter the information Commissioner ridiculed the efforts of the likes of Open Rights Group in the opening keynote session (during his question and answer session).
With my usual bout of insomnia, I read the obituary of Peter Fonda who has died, aged 79. Fonda was made famous by the film Easy Rider. Just now, an old friend, Tony sends me a WhatsApp message this morning. Tony, like me, a keen motorcyclist and lifelong friend. Tony co-ran London’s largest motorcycle showroom in 70’s; we grew up together riding motorcycles. Tony writes: “another style icon of our youth Peter Fonda is dead; he is more responsible for you riding a motorbike than you think”.
It’s already seven days beyond my tutor’s deadline. I am recompiling for the umpteenth time dlib and opencv after multiple attempts. I have to clear my mind I am surrounded with detritus from the last 10 years in my workshop. I find bottles of tomato chutney from 2011 and noxious homebrew essences from previous production runs, dating back from five years ago. I collect together the various coloured alcoholic liquids of various colours to re-distil them and bleach the distillation apparatus, running clean water through it.
I have assembled the breadboard to test out a JQ6500 sound module. The module is capable of storing five different MP3 files that playwhen a connection of the pushbuttons is madr, situated on the intercom. The switches include lifting the phone cradle.… More...
The days click by at an alarmingly fast rate, up at 8 o’clock bed at midnight.
My aim is to use the modified intercoms I have already prepared, incorporating facial recognition to produce a new exhibit, using the familiar Raspberry Pi concealed inside the phone in conjunction with asmall concealed camera using Python Face recognition.