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Programming is Forgetting: Toward a New Hacker Ethic

I wouldn’t be sur­prised to find out that many of us here today like to see our work as a con­tin­u­a­tion of say the Tech Model Railroad Club or the Homebrew Computer Club, and cer­tain­ly the ter­mi­nol­o­gy and the val­ues of this con­fer­ence, like open source for exam­ple, have their roots in that era. As a con­se­quence it’s easy to inter­pret any crit­i­cism of the hack­er ethic—which is what I’m about to do—as a kind of assault.

Anthropocene, Capitalocene, Chthulucene: Staying with the Trouble

I’m going to pro­pose to us that the Cthulucene might be a way to col­lect up the ques­tions for nam­ing the epoch, for nam­ing what is hap­pen­ing in the airs, waters, and places, in the rocks, and oceans, and atmos­pheres. Perhaps need­ing both the Anthropocene and the Capitalocene, but per­haps offer­ing some­thing else, some­thing just maybe more liv­able.

Liberation tech­nol­o­gy

My goal […] was to live in that ten­sion, to empow­er mak­ers, musi­cians, coders, and artists to con­tin­ue to make wide-eyed and yet still open-hearted— One of my favorite authors, Ursula K. LeGuin calls this the Grand Inquisitor’s Choice,” where you choose free­dom with­out hap­pi­ness, or hap­pi­ness with­out free­dom.

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