PDM Videos

Big Data and Social Control: A Brave New World?

NYU Skirball Center: June 10, 2016

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Joshua Klein is a technologist who uses systems thinking to create alternative methods of succeeding in divergent fields. He is most widely known for his project designed to train crows to fetch lost change, but has also used this method to write two books (a science fiction novel and a business book), participate in several startups, work for the US Intelligence Community, and speak at conferences such as Davos and TED. Klein's speeches and articles frequently center on hacking as a theme, in which he reappropriates the term from its common misconception (as executing malicious computer attacks) to instead emphasize the unorthodox reworking of existing systems (systems thinking) for mutual benefit. This theme is elaborated on in his speeches to explain how he was able to achieve exploits such as publishing a book by giving it away for free, training crows to fetch coins, and reworking the employee/employer relationship.

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