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Submission + - ScareMail makes email "scary" in order to disrupt NSA surveillance ( 2

forgetcolor writes: Artist Ben Grosser has posted his open-source project ScareMail, "a web browser extension that makes email 'scary' in order to disrupt NSA surveillance. Extending Google’s Gmail, the work adds to every new email’s signature an algorithmically generated narrative containing a collection of probable NSA search terms. This “story” acts as a trap for NSA programs like PRISM and XKeyscore, forcing them to look at nonsense. Each email’s story is unique in an attempt to avoid automated filtering by NSA search systems."

Submission + - Facebook Demetricator -- Facebook Without The Numbers (

mixwhit writes: Would you add as many friends on Facebook if you weren't constantly confronted with how many you have? Would you like as many ads if you weren't always shown how many others liked it before you? Part art, part tech, and part social experiment, Facebook Demetricator allows you to find out. It's a web browser extension that strips all the numbers from Facebook, inviting you to try the system without these things, to enable a network society that isn't so dependent on quantification.

Submission + - How Facebook Homogenizes Identity (

mixwhit writes: This paper explores how the technological design of Facebook homogenizes identity and limits personal representation. I look at how that homogenization transforms individuals into instruments of capital, and enforces digital gates that segregate users along racial boundaries. Using a software studies methodology that considers the design of the underlying software system, I examine how the use of finite lists and links for personal details limits self-description. In what ways the system controls one’s visual presentation of self identity is analyzed in terms of its relation to the new digital economy. I also explore the creative ways that users resist the limitations Facebook imposes, as well as theorize how technological changes to the system could relax its homogenizing and limiting effects.

Comment Dymo is it (Score 1) 63

I bought my spouse a Dymo 400 for xmas ($80 or so at amazon). I was amazed by its speed and ease. One caveat: it came with a label test halfway stuck in and out of the case, without instructions for removing it. Needless to say, I chose to pull it the wrong way, and ended up with bits of label sticker stuck inside the thing. Didn't make for a happy xmas morning. Once I got it out it works great. I tested it on OS X and XP. No printer cartridges either. Deal.

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