June 11

AN-0209-Surveillance-and You-A-Net-Effect

We started with a CASAA update.

Then Verey and I dove right into surveillance.

In America everyone seems to be having a hard time grasping the ultimate surveillance powers our president has but nobody seems to want to discuss how those powers were wielded by the previous administration.

We all know we're being watched on many fronts but what happens when that surveillance is something we invite into our own homes?What happens when we allow something to listen to every word,every song,monitor every purchase become something akin to a family member?What does that say about the comfort level we have with being under total surveillance?

As bad as government surveillance is  we assume there is some means to an end in it.But what about advertising surveillance?What about not just the watching and the like counting and the eye movement tracking but what if advertisements playing on t.v. could call you out by name?What if that were just the beginning of a whole new wave of watching and tracking?

Adults sort of grasp the implications of what being watched,being tracked being monitored does but do children?What kind of world is it when the school systems subject them to this sort of treatment every single day and there is no way to opt out?

What happens when after decades of this sort of treatment people are forced to confront the idea that there may be nothing left to hide?

With facial recognition software how do we protect children from being caught in the net swallowing not just our privacy but our very identity every single day?

Reporters are not immune from the dragnet capturing us all and at times the sheer volume of surveillance on them and their work is overwhelming and scary.

In the future where our economy becomes ever more tied to plastic and chips and less tied to the anonymity of cash what does the surveillance net look like?

What happens when restaurants,bars,movie theatres and public places we congregate track us not just as we enter but also at the point of purchase,following our eyes,capturing and tracking our behaviors for analysis?

Tracking for advertising purposes is surveillance and in Dublin that takes on a totally different meaning with no way to opt out.

The panopticon is all around us and we helped to build it,to bring it to fruition and it now takes on a life all it's own.

With nowhere to hide and no way out where do we go from here?


May 13


Last night we started the show off with the CASAA update. Since it was a remote feed there were some sound and connectivity issues.

Then the real fun began.

My question has always been what is the nature of reality?

It's a fair question studied since time began.

Why are we here? What does it all mean?

Joining us for this fun mind bending evening were as always my rock and my producer Verey,my dear friend Margo and her very brilliant husband Steve.

Since we explored reality we looked at the intersection of science,philosophy and the self.

As an observer not a scientist I thought where this fails us is that we want to understand as a scientist the nature of everything but we try to remove the self from the study of this.

We seemingly can't look at this without adding the self into the equation.

Our first exploration for the evening was the nature of weird in quantum reality.

And as a sort of offshoot we looked at the butterfly effect.

I talked a bit about being a buddhist and the fascination I myself have with the study of quantum physics.

We know more than we think but the more we know the less we know.

And we moved on to gravity,gravitons and dark matter.

I found myself reaching for things that made all of this relatable because most of this seems contradictory and feels like doublespeak.

Nobody really understands what reality really is but I assume we don't think of reality as being layered but it really seems to be, it is all layers and like the humble onion as we go along we peel away more layers and begin to understand more.

Reality is what you see and experience but all of it is unique to each person and being.

This probably needed to be four or five shows so if you made it all the way to the end thank you for taking this journey with us tonight.