adorable naiveté… plans within plans, kites, deadcats, and dogwhistles

here’s a fünné question…

write some systemy comment about unintended consequences, CAS, network effects, blah blah something something Ashby de la Beer Simonyi blah Maturana

FEATURITIS FOGGING: cognitive overload triggered by escalating complexity and emergent systemic interactions leading to creative fog and senior moments which aren’t etc etc

Has The Home Recording Studio Dream Become A Nightmare? Are You Tired Of Fighting Technology?

also dont use Slack. 

try posting a letter.

more speed less focus



A key reason Putin’s bloody invasion is faltering? He’s no match for Zelenskiy’s iPhone | Jonathan Freedland | The Guardian

The leader’s messages to his people – and the west – have been central to the heroic fightback. But now more than ever, we must stay engaged, says Guardian columnist Jonathan Freedland
— Read on

Lolz. Freedy should be writing for the NME. Waitrose bedsit fanboy.

Putin wanted Donblas and a corridor from Crimea. And to cost Ukraine. And to ind out how much petrol is left in his resource war tank. Not a lot eh Vlad? Windmills against the Nazis, lolzki.

Sri Lanka, proud Island nation with rich culture going back thousands of years, annual turnover less than one branch of Sports Direct. Sri Lanka is now a wholly owned subsidiary of China PLC.

Cash-strapped Sri Lanka cancels school exams over paper shortage

Official sources said the move could effectively hold up tests for about two-thirds of the country’s 4.5 million students.

Students wearing protective face masks practice keeping a one meter distance as they attend a maths lesson inside a class room on the first day at Vidyakara college, which re-opened after almost two months of lock-down amidst concerns about the spread of coronavirus disease (COVID-19), in Colombo, Sri Lanka July 6, 2020.
Education authorities said exams were postponed indefinitely due to an acute paper shortage as Sri Lanka contends with its worst financial crisis since independence in 1948 [File: Dinuka Liyanawatte/Reuters]

Published On 19 Mar 202219 Mar 2022

Sri Lanka has cancelled exams for millions of school students in the Western Province as the country ran out of printing paper with Colombo short on dollars to finance imports, according to officials.

Education authorities said the term tests, scheduled a week from Monday, were postponed indefinitely due to an acute paper shortage as Sri Lanka contends with its worst financial crisis since independence in 1948.

list 2 of 4

Sri Lankan protesters demand president quit over economic crisis

list 3 of 4

Sri Lanka reverses course, seeks financial support from IMF

list 4 of 4

Photos: Power cuts in Sri Lanka have hit all walks of life

end of list

“School principals cannot hold the tests as printers are unable to secure foreign exchange to import necessary paper and ink,” the Department of Education of the Western Province, home to nearly six million people, said.

Term tests for classes 9, 10 and 11 are part of a continuous assessment process to decide if students are promoted to the next grade at the end of the year.

A debilitating economic crisis brought on by a shortage of foreign exchange reserves to finance essential imports has seen the country run low on food, fuel and pharmaceuticals.

IMF bailout

The cash-strapped South Asian nation of 22 million announced this week that it will seek an IMF bailout to resolve its worsening foreign debt crisis and shore up external reserves.

The International Monetary Fund on Friday confirmed it was considering President Gotabaya Rajapaksa’s surprise Wednesday request to discuss a bailout.

The island nation secured a $1bn credit line from India to buy urgently needed food and medicine, officials said, after Finance Minister Basil Rajapaksa’s visit to New Delhi.

About $6.9bn of Colombo’s debt needs to be serviced this year but its foreign currency reserves stood at about $2.3bn at the end of February.

Long queues have formed across the country for groceries and oil with the government instituting rolling electricity blackouts and rationing of milk powder, sugar, lentils and rice.Sign up for Al JazeeraWeekly Newsletter

The latest news from around the world.Timely. Accurate. Fair.Sign up

By signing up, you agree to our Privacy Policy

Sri Lanka earlier this year asked China, one of its main creditors, to help put off debt payments but there has been no official response yet from Beijing.


Why Not Combat Carbon Emissions With Baby Trees that Emit More Carbon For The First 20 Years, You Cretins

Bored Waitrose weasels with gran stand about as a geography student plants a tiny teeny baby tree that will be a teeny tiny snack tonight for some nearby deer, who are licking their lips as they watch from the bushes


“Scientists have debated whether tree planting should be used as a way of combatting carbon emissions, but Mr Waters said there was an urgent need to try new initiatives and the benefits of tree planting go beyond capturing carbon.

“He said: “We are in a climate emergency and that word emergency is really important. We can’t wait for a perfect solution and we have got to try stuff and we’ve got to do it fast.

“”We know trees help deal with flooding, they help your well-being, there’s very good evidence that being around trees reduces your stress and your blood pressure. There’s evidence to show that areas with lots of trees have a lower crime rate.”

“Lee Waters said Wales “cannot wait for the perfect solution” to combat climate change.”

A man standing in a field pausing to recall some more half-read and totally misunderstood bollocks from a spad briefing he fell asleep during.

“There’s evidence to show that areas with lots of trees have a lower crime rate.” Cretinous logic. Maybe he’s right. There’s very little car theft in the Amazon rainforests, very little burglary.

What the idiot doesn’t know is that baby trees are net producers of carbon until they get to their twenties; then they get a job and settle down or something, and make less nasty carbon than they sequester.


For Forest’s Sake

If you actually care about the planet and yours or other people’s kiddies, this science bloke tells you exactly why it’s a counterproductive crock of shite



Climate change: Free tree offered to every Welsh household
Published6 December 2021

Every household in Wales will be offered a free tree to plant in an effort to help tackle climate change.

People will have a choice of native species to plant in their gardens or have added to woodland on their behalf.

About 1.3 million trees will be made available by the Welsh government, in a scheme which will cost £2m.

Deputy climate change minister Lee Waters said the scheme could help, but there still needed to be a greater increase in planting trees.

“To meet our climate change targets, we have to plant 86 million trees by the end of this decade,” he said.

Every household in Wales will be offered a free tree to plant at home or in a woodland
“That’s an increase every year of 15-fold. So it’s a hell of a challenge, as well as a climate emergency.”

Scientists have debated whether tree planting should be used as a way of combatting carbon emissions, but Mr Waters said there was an urgent need to try new initiatives and the benefits of tree planting go beyond capturing carbon.

He said: “We are in a climate emergency and that word emergency is really important. We can’t wait for a perfect solution and we have got to try stuff and we’ve got to do it fast.

“We know trees help deal with flooding, they help your well-being, there’s very good evidence that being around trees reduces your stress and your blood pressure. There’s evidence to show that areas with lots of trees have a lower crime rate.”

Lee Waters said Wales “cannot wait for the perfect solution” to combat climate change.

Jerry Langford, of Coed Cadw – the Woodland Trust in Wales – said he was confident people would succeed in nurturing trees in their gardens.

“Trees are tough actually,” he said, “you’ve got to treat them pretty badly to kill a tree. So just a bit of tender loving care and it will be fine.

“They need a supply of water and they need to need to make sure they don’t get swamped by competing vegetation.”

The trees will be available from five hubs from March, with a further 20 in the autumn of 2022.

Coed Cadw will plant the trees which people opt not to have in their gardens.

Facebook patents reveal how it intends to cash in on metaverse | Financial Times

i don’t need to comment on this. Just read Daniel F. Galouye’s Counterfeit World…

Facebook patents reveal how it intends to cash in on metaverse
Meta hopes to use tiny human expressions to create virtual world of personalised ads

Hannah Murphy in San Francisco JANUARY 18 2022

Pupil movements, body poses and nose scrunching are among the flickers of human expression that Meta wants to harvest in building its metaverse, according to an analysis of dozens of patents recently granted to Facebook’s parent company.

Chief executive Mark Zuckerberg has pledged to spend $10bn a year over the next decade into the nebulous and much-hyped concept denoting an immersive virtual world filled with avatars. Rivals such as Apple and Microsoft are also pursuing similar aims that Big Tech executives describe as part of the next evolution of the internet.

The Financial Times has reviewed hundreds of applications to the US Patent and Trademark Office, many of which were granted this month. They reveal that Meta has patented multiple technologies that wield users’ biometric data in order to help power what the user sees and ensure their digital avatars are animated realistically.

But the patents also indicate how the Silicon Valley group intends to cash in on its virtual world, with hyper-targeted advertising and sponsored content that mirrors its existing $85bn-a-year ad-based business model.

This includes proposals for a “virtual store” where users can buy digital goods, or items that correspond with real-world goods that have been sponsored by brands.

“For us, the business model in the metaverse is commerce-led,” Nick Clegg, Meta’s head of global affairs told the FT during a recent interview. “Clearly ads play a part in that.” 

The patents do not mean that Meta will definitely build the technology, but they offer the clearest indication yet of how the company aims to make its immersive world into a reality.

Meta patent filing showing a ‘wearable magnetic sensor system’. Sketch gives example of a soldier in sword and armour appearing in a virtual world © Meta patent

Some of the patents relate to eye and face tracking technology, typically collected in a headset via tiny cameras or sensors, which may be used to enhance a user’s virtual or augmented reality experience. For example, a person will be shown brighter graphics where their gaze falls, or ensuring their avatar mirrors what they are doing in real life.

One Meta patent, granted on January 4, lays out a system for tracking a user’s facial expressions through a headset that will then “adapt media content” based on those responses.

There is a “wearable magnetic sensor system” to be placed around a torso for “body pose tracking”. The patent includes sketches of a user wearing the device but appearing in virtual reality as a soldier complete with a sword and armour.

Nick Clegg’s first interview in the metaverse
Another patent proposes an “avatar personalisation engine” that can create three dimensional avatars based on a user’s photos, using tools including a so-called skin replicator.

“Meta aims to be able to simulate you down to every skin pore, every strand of hair, every micromovement,” said Noelle Martin, a legal reformer who has spent more than a year researching Meta’s human-monitoring ambitions with the University of Western Australia.

“The objective is to create 3D replicas of people, places and things, so hyper-realistic and tactile that they’re indistinguishable from what’s real, and then to intermediate any range of services . . . in truth, they’re undertaking a global human-cloning programme.” 

Meta patent application image showing an ‘avatar personalisation engine’ that can create 3D avatars based on a user’s photos using tools such as a so-called skin replicator  © Meta patent application
The project has allowed the company, which in recent times has been stung by other scandals over moderation and privacy, to attract engineers from rivals such as Microsoft amid a fierce battle for talent between the world’s biggest technology companies.

Since changing its name from Facebook to Meta in late October in a corporate rebranding, the company’s share price has risen about 5 per cent to $329.21.

Critics remain sceptical of the vision, suggesting the effort is a distraction from recent scrutiny after whistleblower Frances Haugen last year publicly accused the company of prioritising profit over safety*.

“What are they going to do with more data and how are they going to make sure it is secure?” said Celia Hodent, former director of user experience at Epic Games who now works as an independent consultant.

Zuckerberg has indicated the company plans to keep the prices of its headsets low, but instead draw revenues in its metaverse from advertising, and by supporting sales of digital goods and services in its virtual world.

One patent explores how to present users with personalised advertising in augmented reality, based on age, gender, interest and “how the users interact with a social media platform”, including their likes and comments.

Another seeks to allow third parties to “sponsor the appearance of an object” in a virtual store that mirrors the layout of a retail store, through a bidding process similar to the company’s existing advertising auction process.

The patents indicate how Meta could offer ads in its immersive world that are even more personalised than what is possible within its existing web-based products.

Research shows that eye gaze direction and pupil activity may implicitly contain information about a user’s interests and emotional state, for example, if a user’s eyes linger over an image, this may indicate they like it.

“Clearly, you could do something similar [to existing ad targeting systems] in the metaverse — where you’re not selling eye-tracking data to advertisers, but in order to understand whether people engage with an advertisement or not, you need to be able to use data to know,” Clegg said.

Brittan Heller, a technology lawyer at Foley Hoag, said: “My nightmare scenario is that targeted advertising based on our involuntary biological reactions to stimuli is going to start showing up in the metaverse . . . most people don’t realise how valuable that could be. Right now there are no legal constraints on that.” 

Meta said: “While we don’t comment on specific coverage of our patents or our reasons for filing them, it’s important to note that our patents don’t necessarily cover the technology used in our products and services.”

Additional reporting by Henry Mance in London

*This story has been amended since initial publication to clarify that Haugen had accused Facebook of prioritising profit over safety.

Starmer Starmer Karma Chameleon: BDS or BS?

The forensic Bernard Spiegal, who is, I suspect, proud to be called ‘a Jew that hates Israel’ one of Mark Regev’s favourite slurs, not that I’ve asked, I digress. He is my #1 source of the facts about Israel and Palestine, and he just wrote this about ‘Sir Keith’:

Labour Party leader, Keir Starmer, struck the right tone in his tribute to Archbishop Desmond Tutu who died on the 26 December 2021. He described Tutu as:

‘a tower of a man and a leader of moral activism’ who ‘dedicated his life to tackling injustice and standing up for the oppressed…’His impact on the world crosses borders and echoes through generations’.

But his words ring hollow. Starmer’s encomium to the Archbishop sits ill with positions the Labour Party leader has taken on a cause close to the Archbishop’s heart: Palestine.

As is well known, Tutu was a consistent advocate for justice for Palestinians, and a critic of Israel’s repressive policies towards them.  Tutu also drew parallels between Apartheid South Africa and the Israeli state. Here’s the archbishop:

‘I have witnessed the systemic humiliation of Palestinian men, women and children by members of the Israeli security forces…Their humiliation is familiar to all black South Africans who were corralled and harassed and insulted and assaulted by the security forces of the apartheid government.’

The Archbishop was equally explicit on the need and justification for boycotts and sanctions against Israel as non-violent means to persuade/compel Israel to change its policies in respect of Palestine/Palestinians.

In South Africa, we could not have achieved our democracy without the help of people around the world, who through the use of non-violent means, such as boycotts and divestment, encouraged their governments and other corporate actors to reverse decades-long support for the apartheid regime’

The same issues of inequality and injustice today motivate the divestment movement trying to end Israel’s decades-long occupation of Palestinian territory and the unfair and prejudicial treatment of the Palestinian people by the Israeli government ruling over them’.

Starmer’s position

Will be revealed when you click the link…

We always knew Tory rewilding subsidies would destroy poor Welsh farmers, here’s how…

“As with the debate about rewilding, Glyn fears that carbon offsetting will accelerate a move away from food production and traditional livelihoods in Wales. He doesn’t want to sell carbon credits from planting trees or sequestered carbon in his soils if it replaces rearing sheep and cattle.”

““It would be interesting if the world did come to that, but whether it’s right is another thing. Agriculture is just the recycling of carbon, isn’t it? Whereas the companies that are buying carbon credits are just burning fossil fuels, aren’t they, which is just a one-way system.””

TOXIC OPTICS: the management of appearance and the appearance of management

blying blliars blying

“But there is a kicker to the story, and in it we see how the cynicism of self-preservation prevailed at the expense of doing something long-term and substantive about race relations. Shortly before Macpherson published his report, Straw proposed a follow-up – an ambitious strategy that would prioritise race equality considerations in policymaking across government bodies. Yet taking on racial justice in such a direct manner was just too risky, too destabilising to the government. “A regulation nightmare,” said Blair. Angus Lapsley, an official in Blair’s private office, decided not to back a proposal that racist police officers should be dismissed (government was “cool” towards this suggestion, he said), not because the policy would be wrong, but because of how rightwing papers would react to it. Here is where the decibel level rises. “This could easily become a ‘Telegraph cause celebre’ if taken too far,” said Lapsley. Blair agreed, saying: “We do not want to go OTT on this.” The proposal was killed. There is a sort of sickening relief in seeing those sentiments – expressed behind closed doors – spelled out so matter of factly; in knowing for certain that concerns about racial injustice aren’t taken seriously not because they’re not believed but because they rock the boat. Indeed, the smothering of a broad, progressive race policy 20 years ago tells us much about where we are today, with a government proudly hostile to interrogating the true state of race relations”

Jah das ist güt and other Germanic clichés… Learning the ropes: why Germany is building risk into its playgrounds | Germany | The Guardian

Lofty climbing towers are part of trend away from total safety and towards teaching children to navigate difficult situations
— Read on

Blah blah blah.

An item about play that doesn’t mention Playwork? Why not? Because Playwork is dead. But, huzzah! It doesn’t mention Tim Gill either! Yay! Unfortunately, it didn’t mention Rob Wheway of the CPAS, or, ho ho ho, PlayEngland, PlayScotchland, PlayboredNI, or PllayWhails! Nor did it mention our glorious leader, Sir Adrian of Voce!

Nor Arthur Battram, Wendy Russell, the deceased Stuart Lester, Gordon Sturrock or Perry Else. It completely overlooked Sir Bib Hughes, aka Saint Bob, who invented play in 1902.

Not Lady Allen of Hurtknee, nor her protégé, Lady Penelope of Wilson.

I could go on. I usually do.

But seriously though, the article reads like a clever pressrelease and wudav bean put together by an interner or offspring of Grauniad journo, probably editor Kath Viber’s daughter on the occasion of Take Your Daughter To The Slaughter Day, when posho media ponces are encouraged to give their vile privately educated weasels a day in the office so they can learn the ways of Waitrose, my child.

But I digress.

Matryoska CAS… systems within systems, plans within plans, complex adaptive systems within complex adaptive systems. Not bragging but I foresaw this in 1997.

I’m too old and tired to write my explanation here, sorry. You could start by reading or rereading my book Navigating Complexity.

Here’s the gist: autopoietic systems feedback and amplify. As a system gets bigger it reaches a bifurcation point. Eventually like, say Microsoft v. Apple v Novell v Linux you get a shakeout… one biggy, one ten percenter and minnows. Read Brian Arthur. Read up on N-K networks. Yada yada. Now imagine that at every level. Stafford Beer on acid.

Facebook, the reviled financial corporate entity currently being set up as the proxy fallguy for January 6th (or do I mean 1/6, you know, like 9/11), contains at least 3 nested overlapping CAS. Facebook users are tiny agents in a seethe of nested venned CASes, like 514000 species of bacteria in a mouth ulcer exchanging DNA like pokemon cards in a schoolyard or bodily fluids in an orgy. Try blaming a single, singular lone gunman bacterium that started it all, for any value of ‘it’. Guffaws.

I’d love government to regulate social media. But first you people need to have some glimmer of understanding of what the fuck these ‘internet’ ‘social’, ‘media’ actually are. I can’t tell you, I don’t have answers but I do have way way better questions than you clowns. You need to navigate complexity.

Right now you are up shitcreek without a paddle. You can paddle with your hands, ugh, but you’ll get nowhere without a map and a compass. You need to understand complexity. You have by now understood that you can’t manage it, now you need to learn to navigate it. Damn shame my book is out of print.

Coffee and recycling, Nespresso antichrist

Coffee had a very minor resyk problem years ago….plastic packaging. When I lived in that London I used to buy it freshly ground or as beans from that Monmouth Coffee Shop in paper bags, they bought it in pallets of big sacks, like sacks of coal. Then some genius invented tiny portions in ludicrously expensive aluminium pods. But the machine was dirt cheap, like a Gillette razor, no need to spend half a grand on a Gaggia! And they are completely unrecyclable, unless somebody repurposes a smelter and you don’t mind PCB pollution. They made loadsaprofit. Now they’re greenwashing in the Grauniad. Kill me now…

Economist Brian Easton says trying to organise the electricity system around a competition model based on financial markets does not make sense |


Economist Brian Easton says trying to organise the electricity system around a competition model based on financial markets does not make sense
— Read on

Message found in a bottle of snake oil, in the Sargasso sea…

A friend of mine said, in a lovely,erudite presentation to some very smart folk:

“a weakness of my current thinking is a lack of explicitly encompassing the group, the social.”

Totally agree, we all lack this.

Re-examine page 49 of ‘Navigating Complexity: the essential guide to complexity theory in business and management’, written by myself.

Then think about that botanical nostrum – Early Years textbooks teach that there are three kinds of play in young humans and many mammals: 

  • individual play
  • parallel play
  • social play

Know that this is botany – classifying plants by the shape of their leaves. We observe the spots of a leopard, but what is the mechanism that creates them?

What are the primitives, the atomic irreducible processes that underly the phenomena?

We do not have a language to describe phenomena in groups. I  suspect they are incommensurable, like weather prediction after Lorenz.

We do not have a language to describe phenomena in groups.

This has hamstrung playwork, education, professional football, orchestral performance, NASA budgetary oversight inquiries, Air Accident Investigation, Corporate Fraud Investigation, etcetera etcetera.

There are clues in the Miles Davis approach to group play.

There are clues in Taoism, and Zen.

But as Sapir, Whof and Wittgenstein, and probably Gibson (JJ not W) would tell you, language shapes thought and we do not have the language. 

Try explaining how to put oil into a car without using any car-related, or engine-related words. Go on, try it. Write it down, now go through it and strike out any car-related and engine-related words that crept in. We don’t have a big enough RAM, our short-term memory, to hold even one sentence of the resulting tedious arm-waving stuttering verbiage.

Why doesn’t the world move when I shake my head?


M’learned friend also said:

“This has many implications, but that main one is that we should judge education by the value created for stakeholders (laudate Tom) – this is fittingly complex and circular. 


Very pleased that you rate teecha Tom.

Not stakeholders, feck stakeholders. Leave that to the Tory Goovey Gradgrindians.

I  think you might mean participants? If so then I‘ll semi-agree.

How would you judge a Beth Chatto garden? Answer that and you’ll know how to judge education .


Read Seedstock by Frank Herbert… full text here…

I  cannot link to that story without rereading it, and when I  reread it, I  cannot help but be moved to tears.


Koan for you: “how can we value things without judging them?” asked the abbot.

Answers on a postcard to my fastness by Ruabon mountain, please, or via ‘e-mail’.