Babylon sunset

halloween2013November starts with a week away for TB and Adnan in Greece where reSync will attend the New Babylon Revisited event at  Goethe Institut Athen to work with locals and users of the AWMN to explore file synchronisation during Restreet workshops on 7th and 8th.

Meanwhile we have been striving to tidy up both the rambling bit.spc.org resource library and the longer term installations at Deckspace. In the run up to the end of our 13th year at Borough Hall we are set on a campaign of clear up and clear out of unusable cruft.

As a result there is now a growing pile of redundant PC’s, aged wifi access equipment, sound systems and cables to dispose of. Please join us during the first week of December from Wednesday to Wednesday for a rummage through what’s there and if it suits you take away stuff you fancy after-which we will have to clear these out to liberate the storage area and allow some breathing space to accommodate fresh material the new year might bring us.

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Do what?

omvFor those collating archive materials, scanning images, artwork and transposing texts there are anxieties around storage and protection of the accumulating material that we would like to dispel so that further review and re-presentation can be well supported.

Last month we set up a Synology diskstation 212j a twin drive NAS product to provide MayDay Rooms with project archive space and backup storage for office desktop pc’s. So far it presents no shortage of services to allow for flexible access and publishing but we are still looking at some open source distributions to improve options.

slaxThe best looking of these is OpenMediaVault which is based on Debian linux and can be installed from CD or USB drive onto SD, HDD or run as  a Virtual Machine. We are still keen on reusing the many desktop PC’s which otherwise get left to one side in favour of faster hardware but which in most cases surpass the spec of commercial NAS products.

We also spent a week looking at SLAX which reminds me of the BLAG (brixton linux action group) of over a decade ago.. and also boots from CD/USB in standalone or PXE server mode to offer lightweight desktop re-activation of legacy hardware that may well usurp the bloated mainstream linux distributions we normally recommend!

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Daft drudger

Over a decade of webhosting and subscriber support at Deckspace we have from time to time faced difficulties. The last week of August was a shock to the system as scheduled migration of subscriber domains went badly and it’s taken ages for everything to settle down. So apologies if your website was offline or if you landed at an unfamiliar page.

The effected domains are 120years, Consume, Dataunion, Exploding Cinema, Hivenetworks, Moylondon, lisa-bennett, Mutantfilm, Piratetv, Raylab, WirelessFM to name but a few!

Many of the SPC subdomains like OWN, Fuller and Storysacks were also effected so apologies to all effected!

Many thanks to Garry and Ellis of RedRawinternet, now hosting SPC subscriber domains, for his generous support and tenacity in the face of so much chaos.

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Histrionics

Visited Wikimania festival in Barbican Halls to update on all thinks wiki, Wikipedia and ‘the culture’. It’s been a while now since attempting to use the tallbastard account set up in 2007 though that’s now an ‘unsuitable username’ so had to make a new one.

wikimaniaOf the many sessions and plenaries three items stood out; Peter Murray Rust delivered a passionate call for all to fully adopt wikipedia for journal publication and publish all science research outcomes as well as it’s failures.

Histropedia launched their timeline toolbox for visualisation of wikidata and which is a tidy solution soon to gather a storm of interest. We also see the huge potential for it’s use in a range of locally grown archive initiatives like MayDay Rooms. Finally in a session for Visualeditor we had a view on the next steps for mediawiki toward collaborative editing solutions with wide reaching benefits for all interested in use of wikidata .

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Canon fodder

Spent today skimming domestic tasks and sorting out failed starter on my vintage Honda CR-V. Yes it’s one of the green ones with a wheel on the hatch door. Hard as nails but suffering from my handling and the traffic calming lumps in SE London.

canontestAnyway took the opportunity to call in on Brockley based karma mechanic Andrew and talk about browns gas welding and tree stump grinders.. he kindly came over and jumped my ailing battery so we headed over to his lab where he sussed the busted relay problem quickly enough.

With the car now more reliable I popped by Creekside Educational Trust and picked up a pile of aged Dell Latitude P4 laptops onto which I am installing Lubuntu 14.03 LTS now. The laptops were purchased for the Trust in 2003 before SPC installed the first community wireless mesh access point there and took on the job of servicing and supporting the tech resource. OWN still has a busy node in operation from the roof but that’s another story! In the pile of printers was a USB canon scanner which worked just fine as you can see!

There is a huge A3 colour laser printer available which just found it’s a new home at Microrave.biz . It has spare toners and is in mechanically good nick considering the age so if you fancy putting it to use please get in touch with them (and for their top notch sound and lighting) but take your own paper. The other items include Brother MFC A3 colour  inkjet and a mono MFC A3 laser which I think will go to Mayday Rooms for their library use.

 

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Super hot

Always keen to try out ideas and technologies was interested to hear about a new project called SuperGlue which is due for a launch in October 2014. It can be run on a regular home router (openWRT DDwrt etc.. ) so that basic media rich webpapges can authored easily in the browser without the need for database instead using flat files making it portable tiny and a break from the bloated web.

Whilst awaiting availability tallbastard is currently experimenting with it’s precursor HotGlue and have set up a test site at hotglue.resourceforge.org.

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Contending NRG

Despite the spike in awareness anti-fracking movement has stimulated, the ongoing call for dialogue on the issues has yet to find it’s full voice.

Talkfracking.org seeks to overturn that with a fresh campaign to encourage open exchange, expose the bullying and challenge misdirection of information in a series of public events where both sides of the debate can express their interests
and understanding.

Nothing seems to have pissed people off more lately than the headlong rush of government and industry toward fracking in the UK. The issues of ground water pollution, surface disruption and greenhouse emissions are well documented but have failed to alarm the wider population to the dangers. Our ongoing lethargy is their best bet to ensure the imminent nationwide free for all.

Private interests and institutional anxiety over energy independence have exacerbated friction in the east. As the old arguments stack up on the Russian border the overall feeling of exploitation and manipulation on all sides compounds the rather sickening feelings of dread as we all face realities of our wasteful existences and environmental incompetence. 

Thanks to all who have signed the open letter !

Professor David Smythe
Professor Sir Harold Kroto FRS (Nobel Laureate in Chemistry)
John Christensen
Dr David P Knight
Richard Murphy
Dr Hugh Montgomery (Professor of intensive Care, UCL)
Professor Erik Bichard
Dr Damien Short
ProfessorGraham Warren
Professor Lawrence Dunne

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Amro 2014

This years AMRO 27th-31st May will be held at Architekturforum in Linz after a break last year return with more questions to invite somespontaneity, enthusiasm and answers from the wide range of engineers, artists and activist participants.

Four of us from London will work together to facilitate two sessions ‘VPN picnic‘ and ‘Data Union‘.

Join us on Thursday noon as we unpack the HiveNetworks / Piratebox sandwich and sip on this autonomous computing and network storyline. Please bring your own food, drink and thinking things.

On Friday please find us again at 1pm as we examine the proposals for Data Union in response to increasing calls on our personal data from commercial, civic and cultural quarters.

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Handi Gandi

After many years embedded in cpanel for dns, mail and web management of key services at spc.org we are today transferring dns control over to our new supplier gandi.net.

So far it seems to be going ok but in the case we loose some domain control in the next few days I thought it would be helpful to make a comment here as this seems to be standing up ok for now at least!

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Ug reSync

Would you Adnan and TB it?

Following on from a short research fellowship at Post media Lab in Leuphana University, Luneburg, co-workers on deckspace.tv have formed reSync UG to move ahead with some of the ideas arising and apply some outcomes. (UG a small private company with limited liability based in Germany).

image

Adnan and TB, Hamburg 2014

Now as we don’t live in Germany this was only possible whilst the fellowship was in progress which qualified us for 12 month business start-up support from the federal state of Hanover that we have now activated. It was a nightmare to set up so lets hope it works out to be less of a drag in operation – I don’t think…

The first of our reSync activities will centre on Lunatic the annual arts and music festival. Work has already begun to prepare that collaboration for June 2014 and to refine the techniques explored throughout ‘Taking care of things‘ event a the city archive Luneburg in this January.

UG – Unternehmergesellschaft (haftungsbeschränkt)an entrepreneurial company (with limited liability). Apparently it is a quite new development in Germany, a sub-type of the German GmbH (Gesellschaft mit beschränkter Haftung–company with limited liability), meant to compete with Britain’s small private limited companies. (thanks for the link arandomidea)

alarm gospcorg

 

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