“It’s no coincidence that co-living start-ups have gravitated to cities like Berlin, San Francisco, London and New York. Ostensibly ‘winning’ the battle for capital and talent, they are urban testing-grounds, where rootless and cashed-up tech workers, heated real estate markets, and rising housing pressures add up to a recipe for experimentation.”

An interesting look at co-living but please let’s not change the entire city into this nonsense.

About password managers:
“But I never found a way to get people onto 1password in a single training session. The setup process has a lot of moving parts, involving the desktop app, browser plugin, online service, mobile app, and app store. It requires repeatedly typing a long master passphrase.”

People do not like to hear it but password managers are BAD. Even the best of them is so bad that I struggle to use it. (I do because I have no alternative.)

https://idlewords.com/2019/05/what_i_learned_trying_to_secure_congressional_campaigns.htm

Tooling has become so good and so empowering that like in this tweet, many commerce ‘startups’ that are really struggling to hire and retain dev teams (and then utilize them to their potential) would be much better served using Airtable, Zapier and Pipedrive until they break.

More likely in any case that the startup will go out of business or be acquired than it hitting the limits of those kinds of tools.

The Theory of Society

I was arguing against Systems Theory today (a necessary evil when you live in Germany) which prompted the thought of searching for the conjunction of Bruno Latour and Niklas Luhmann. That led me to this gem.

It turns out that they met each other for a debate in 1996 in Bielefeld and Latour DESTROYED his opponent (full article).

Luhmann, as expected, failed to engage with the theme of the conference, Science and Technology Studies and didn’t come out of his bubble. The same bubble that he has managed to trap most of the German humanities in.

[Luhmann] only managed to address the theme of the conference—science and its sociological study—with half a sentence where he curtly asserted that science is an autopoietic subsystem of modern society.

An autopoietic subsystem, my ass. Latour quickly riposted into a frontal assault at the entirety of Luhmann-ism.

No, according to Latour, this theory didn’t have anything to offer to him and neither he concluded any of those gathered there. A quick perusal of the conference program should have sufficed to ascertain that the empirically obsessed STSers could not recover their objects in this theory. This may be bemoaned from the high vantage point of the Theory of Society as poor, theoretically “flat” sociology, nonetheless, Latour replied, this empirical Zoology of STS gives an account of this society as it is and not how it may appear from the distance of the chilling heights of systems theory.
Latour clarified that fundamentally, systems theory represents everything that he and his colleagues in science studies have been battling for 20 years—yes, really battle and not just criticize. The purification of science, the simplification of the social by a demarcation with its environment, Luhmann’s work as the embodiment of the “cognitive turn” in epistemology—for Latour these were the old buzzwords that had to miss what’s special about science: its materiality. And in doing so of course also what’s specific for modern society, the large technological networks.

Latour battling ‘the purification of science [and] the simplification of the social’, a true hero of science and society.

Living without a car in Berlin

From a thread about whether it is possible or not to live in Berlin without a car (gasp!). This is what a normal odd day of mine looks like.

The car isn’t the problem or more like: having a car would be a problem. During those rush hours, doing the same journeys by car would take at least twice as long.

  1. 07:00 aufstehen, Kinder anziehen, KiTa brot machen
  2. 07:45 Lastenrad holen, noch was anziehen usw., Kinder überzeugen einzusteigen
  3. 08:10 Abfahrt zum Kita (andere Seite von Kreuzberg, 2.8km)
  4. 08:25 Kita Ankunft
  5. 08:40 Idealfall Abfahrt Kita zur Arbeit (Schöneberg, 7.7km)
  6. 09:10 Sitze auf dem Arbeitsplatz
  7. 16:30 Abfahrt Arbeit (weil ich sie gebracht habe muss ich sie jetzt nicht abholen, kann auch 16:00 sein oder 17:00)
  8. 16:45 Biomarkt wenn wir noch einkaufen brauchen
  9. 17:10 Abfahrt Biomarkt
  10. 17:25 spätestens wieder zu Hause

Den nächsten Tag tue ich das gleiche andersrum mit dem Zwilingsrad und hole die um 15:30 ab beim Kita. Ich fahre ungefähr 15km Rad pro Tag.

Ich arbeite 30 Stunden aber das ist nicht wegen des Autos oder so sondern weil ich meine Kinder auch ab und zu noch sehen möchte.

Mit Auto wären wir nicht schneller (eher viel langsamer weil Stau + Parkplatzsuche usw.) also das macht für unsere Stunden gar keinen Unterschied.

Leave it to the Netherlands to have a Green party that is right-wing just like every other party. Their leader, Jesse Klaver, styled himself after Trudeau during his campaign but after that, the result has been a bit lackluster without a seat in government.

Below is the story how they backstabbed our boy—or more wayward son—Zihni Özdil because he didn’t kowtow to the great leader.

https://www.nrc.nl/nieuws/2019/05/30/opkomst-en-ondergang-van-een-bevlogen-kamerlid-a3962131

Fijn zo’n land onder de zeespiegel dat wordt beheerst door klimaatontkenners. En gezien het Nederlandse asielbeleid is het niet heel waarschijnlijk dat klimaatvluchtelingen elders op een warm welkom zullen kunnen rekenen.