It’s commonly accepted that with any new medium or technological advance, sex and pornographic material can often be the catalyst that drives early adoption. Among the first things produced after the invention of the printing press were of course bibles; but along side the bibles there was ribald and bawdy poetry and stories. When photography was developed in the 18th century, photographic commerce was mostly about selling people portraits of themselves or their loved ones—at least, initially. What really kicked off an industry for photographs was the marketing of pictures of other people… in the nude. These pictures were largely marketed as artistic model studies for aspiring artists, but that does little to explain why they sold in the tens of millions. The Crimean war in the 1850s and the American Civil war in the 1860s really lit a fuse under this industry. Soldiers on the front lines carried pictures of their sweetheart in their pockets, but also pictures of these “model studies.”
Everything about web page layout is changing. New CSS specifications will make it possible to do designs we’ve never seen before. Rachel Andrew joins Jen Simmons to talk about what’s happening.
In the 1st of a new series Aleks Krotoski gets down to work. From micro-taskers paid pennies to be the janitors of our digital services to car drivers jumping on the Uber bandwagon.
Aleks speaks to technology writer Kashmir Hill who spent a month as an invisible girlfriend writing loving texts to service subscribers for a few cents per message. This is just one example of ‘micro-tasking’ made famous by Amazon’s Mechanical Turk service. For Vili Lehdonvirta of the Oxford internet institute they’re examples of the hidden human effort going into services we would assume were automated. Its a new form of piece work undertaken by a causal workforce doing it where and when it suits them.
This type of work treats you like part of a system managed by algorithms an artificial, artificial intelligence. In some senses this isn’t anything new as work historian Richard Donkin explains using the examples of the time and motion studies pioneered by Fredrick Winslow Taylor and later taken up by Henry Ford.
What is new is that having an algorithm as a boss runs the risk of having only the appearance of freedom and flexibility. Its what attracts people to the so called gig economy, where tasks are farmed out by the app to a willing freelance workforce. Aleks hears both sides of that experience from two people who make their living off a digital platform; one by day and the other by night.
So what promise do these new forms of digital work offer? Aleks discovers they have the potential to be both a race to the bottom for labour markets and usher in a new era for those currently unable to work.
Paul Ford didn’t expect his article on coding to go big. But almost a year later, the Bloomberg issue dedicated to “What is code?” is still completely sold out. We dig into the major topics covered in that long and highly entertaining piece, like conferences, open source, and languages, and how Paul and the editors created a technical article that still managed to be accessible to coder and non-coders alike.
It’s easier to get people to stop speaking a language than to take it up again. Just ask the Irish. | Public Radio International
For centuries, colonialists, church leaders and educators discouraged Irish people from using their native tongue. When Ireland won independence, its leaders had no idea just how difficult it would be to bring the language back. Despite that, there’s hope for Irish today.
Art and the Connected Future - Future Tense - ABC Radio National (Australian Broadcasting Corporation)
What role do traditional galleries and new online social platforms play in progressing digital art and serving the interests and needs of artists in the connected age?
In this program we look at the role of traditional galleries and new online social platforms in progressing digital art and serving the interests and needs of artists in the connected age.
We also explore exactly what we mean by digital art… and whether it’s having a democratising effect on creativity.
This show was inspired by the National Gallery of Victoria’s symposium of the same name.
Four indigenous musicians talk about rediscovering their roots, reconnecting with families and culture and what are they doing now to help others on a similar journey.
Highlights of Rediscovering Roots, presented by Heartlands: the cultural stream of the Blue Mountains music festival, Katoomba, 20 March 2016
Stanley Gawurra Gaykamangu comes from Milinginbi Island off the coast of East Arnhem Land and sings in the Gupapuynga language. His double CD, Ratja YaliYali (‘vine of love’) comprises one disc of original material and one of traditional songs. Gawurra has recently moved to Melbourne with his family to launch his performing career.
Music played during this interview: Track Title: Gawurra Gupa (Catfish) Artist: Gawurra Composer: Traditionl CD Title: Ratja Yaliyali Record Co/Number: Caama Duration: 45"
Track Title: Bundurr (Story of Myself) Artist: Gawurra Composer: Gaykamangu CD Title: Ratja Yaliyali Record Co/Number: Caama Duration: 3.35
In the lead-up to this year’s budget, we’ve heard a lot about Australia’s tax system and possible changes to the taxes on goods and services, capital gains, superannuation and so on.
One thing we won’t be hearing about is any change to the way the federal government gets a return from the mining industry, which is gradually sliding out of the biggest boom since Australia’s nineteenth century gold rush.
Rear Vision looks at the recent resources boom. How did it unfold and who were the winners and losers?
George Megalogenis: could Australia become globalisation’s next victim? - RN Breakfast - ABC Radio National (Australian Broadcasting Corporation)
Australia is still accepting accolades for surviving the Global Financial Crisis, but for those who think a lot more reform is needed to shore up the future, the current tax debate has not given much cause for hope.
There’s a new cautionary note out today that asks: could Australia become globalisation’s next victim?
It’s in the form of a new Quarterly Essay, by political commentator, economist and author George Megalogenis.
He argues that the version of capitalism favoured by conservatives is broken, and is calling for greater political intervention in the economy.
George Megalogenis joins Fran Kelly on RN Breakfast.
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