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27 Aug 22:24

The Civic Hacker Hacked

by micah

“The countercultural trickster has been pressed into the service of the preppy tech entrepreneur class. It began innocently, no doubt. The association of the hacker ethic with startups might have started with an authentic counter-cultural impulse on the part of outsider nerds tinkering away on websites. But, like all gentrification, the influx into the scene of successive waves of ever less disaffected individuals results in a growing emphasis on the unthreatening elements of hacking over the subversive ones.”

— The Hacker Hacked, by Brett Scott

Ever since I read Brett Scott’s engrossing piece on what he refers to as the “gentrification of hacker culture” I’ve been thinking about how this idea might apply to the world of civic hacking. The lament about the loss of the subversive nature of hacking resonates—Scott repeatedly uses this word in describing the origins of hacking and its focus on being antiestablishment and decentralized.

Civic hacking became popular in the last several years via municipal app contests like Apps for Democracy and NYC Big Apps, and then by community-focused events organized by local groups. Often these local events have benefited—and continue to benefit—from the direct participation of local governments and other government entities.

Back in 2011, one of the first civic hacking events I helped organize in Philadelphia was focused on transit data, and the event ultimately included the participation of the local transit authority. I even talked about the benefit of having representatives from the transit authority on hand at the event in subsequent interviews.

Participation in civic hacking events by government employees is something I helped to advocate for after I joined the City of Philadelphia as Chief Data Officer. I regularly attended civic hacking meetups and weekend hackathons, and encouraged others in city government to do so as well. I’d say it’s pretty common now in most cities with a developed civic hacking community to have regular, visible representation from government at civic hacking events.

But civic hacking did not always have such a cozy relationship with government.

Many early civic hacking projects grew out of frustration with the quality of public services and the lack of available data from governments. One of the earliest civic hacking projects in the Philadelphia area—which helped to inspire the transit hackathon I would later organize—was born out of frustration over the lack of easy-to-access transit schedule data from the regional transportation authority.

These early civic hacking projects often used FOIA requests or web scrapers to obtain data that governments were reluctant to open up, and some even drew the ire of the government lawyers.

The “subversive” nature of civic hacking continues to this day through the work of people like Carl Malamud and others. It would be unwise to forget the many institutional barriers that still exist to releasing open data from government, and collaborating effectively with outside parties.

A little subversion is still necessary.

There is much to be gained by building bridges between the world of civic hacking and government. There is a long history of volunteerism to help government in this country, of which civic hacking can be viewed as a contemporary extension. Engaged civic hackers can help build solutions that help governments deliver services more effectively, and increasingly the civic hacking community has been looked at as fertile ground for recruiting new government employees.

But is there a risk that the civic hacking community will become gentrified? Has it already become so?

Do civic hacking groups that work regularly and closely with government officials feel empowered to ask tough, direct (often uncomfortable) questions about data releases and procurement practices? Do groups that collaborate regularly with government feel that they have standing to hold public officials’ feet to the fire when needed?

How do we balance the relationship between civic hackers and governments in a way that can realize the potential benefits of “government as a platform” and that is also true to the subversive roots of civic hacking?

I don’t have the answers, but I hope others are open to having this discussion.

This post originally appeared on Mark Headd’s blog Civic Innovations.

The post The Civic Hacker Hacked appeared first on Civic Hall.

26 Aug 23:03

Sky Swimming: Transparent Pool Bridges Two 10-Story Buildings

by Urbanist
[ By WebUrbanist in Architecture & Houses & Residential. ]

sky pool london

Designed to span over 80 feet and connect a pair of apartment structures in London, this remarkable see-through glass pool will give swimmers the ultimate view of the city on all sides. This record-setting, first-of-its-kind creation reflects recent advances in material science and structurally engineering.

sky pool bridge

In addition to this dazzling connector, a secondary bridge will allow people to walk between roofs, accessing other amenities including a bar and spa. Unlike many deceptive architectural renderings, this audacious structural design has already received planning approval – the real-life version coming in 2017 will indeed be as shown.

sky pool repeat

Developed by Arup Associates in collaboration with project architects of HAL, this water bridge will be 15 feet wide and 9 feet, framed in thick but transparent glass on three sides. Aquarium specialists and engineers were consulted throughout to ensure the safety of the endeavor.

battersea refab

This residential project is part of a larger overhaul being orchestrated by Frank Gehry and Foster + Partners, a master plan which includes eight other major architectural features and renovations surrounding the historic Battersea Power Station.

battersea from above

“My vision for the sky pool stemmed from a desire to push the boundaries in the capability of construction and engineering, I wanted to do something that had never been done before,” said Ballymore’s chairman and CEO, Sean Mulryan. “The experience of the pool will be truly unique, it will feel like floating through the air in central London.”

sky pool india

sky swimming design

Meanwhile, in India, a similar undertaking is underway. The pool designed for the Twilight Star development in Surat, Gujarat, has a shorter span but a bonus feature: it is cantilevered out beyond the edges of the buildings it connects, providing an additional thrill for those willing to take the plunge.

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London's iconic Battersea Power Station, which has been abandoned since the 1980s, could turn into a theme park and museum in this wild rollercoaster concept. Click Here to Read More »»

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[ By WebUrbanist in Architecture & Houses & Residential. ]

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26 Aug 22:56

elshalarossa: ewebie: rosalyndablack: charlesoberonn: perfect...







The X-Files theme is so serene and calm in major key.

It could be a video game soundtrack

It sounds like the starting village music.

△ ▽ follow for more chill conspiracy ▽ △

elshalarossa - More music that I wasn’t sure I needed until it ended up in my ear holes.

Ack! This makes me uncomfortable. “The truth is… right here. You can trust… everyone. Want a hug?”

25 Aug 16:04


25 Aug 16:02

When you stumble into Noisebridge 3 sheets to the wind and find a jerry-rigged bidet


Camp NOPE was pretty great

25 Aug 16:01

More realistic people hearing strangers ringing the doorbell at 3AM

24 Aug 20:07

The Perfect Response To Any Sext


Submitted by: (via Tumblr)

Tagged: pics , wtf , sexting
24 Aug 20:06

huhkins: earth-horn: dont-mind-me-but-i: ex0skeletal: end0ske...






Look at these birbs

Today is annoying so here are some smol fat birbs



subtlecluster uhm THIS IS EVERYTHING.

24 Aug 20:01


24 Aug 19:59

smartgirlsattheparty: mydrunkkitchen: ctron164: nikkisshadetre...







Clock it




24 Aug 19:52


24 Aug 16:38

"A southwestern Ontario family had a creepy encounter with a baby monitor watching their young child..."

A southwestern Ontario family had a creepy encounter with a baby monitor watching their young child when it suddenly began playing music and a voice said they were being watched.

It happened a little after nine in the evening on July 7 to a young family in Middlesex Centre, a rural area north of London, Ont., according to Ontario Provincial Police Const. Liz Melvin.

She said one of the parents was rocking the young child to sleep in the nursery when the camera was remotely activated.

“The camera played some eerie music and a voice could be heard indicating the parent and child were being watched,” Melvin said. “Obviously it’s going to be disturbing.”

The family’s Internet service provider confirmed the router had been hacked and the source of the hack could be from anywhere in the world, she said.


Police warning after baby monitor hacked, used to play ‘eerie music,’ tell parent they were being watched | National Post

(via Activist Post: Scary Grid: Baby Monitor Hacked to Play ‘Eerie Music,’ Tell Parent ‘You Are Being Watched’)

24 Aug 15:54

optimysticals: lierdumoa: xaevierthorne: huffylemon: Greek...





Greek Mythology/Roman Empire on tumblr


Oh man, I remember as a little kid reading this sanitized illustrated version of the Greek myths, and not finding out until years later the “sea foam” Aphrodite emerged from was in fact jizz from Uranus’ lopped off gonads.

Me: giggling like a doofus.

24 Aug 11:43

aerialsquid: The perfect dystopia-themed female cosplay.


The perfect dystopia-themed female cosplay.

24 Aug 11:40

princesslibrarian: you think you’re a better kisser than me??? you think you’re a better cuddler?...


you think you’re a better kisser than me??? you think you’re a better cuddler? come over here and prove it punk

23 Aug 01:00

Kaleidoscopic: The Honda GL1000, à la française

by Wesley Reyneke

Big, brazen and beautiful: a custom Honda GL1000 Gold Wing from France.
In a world where we throw around words like ‘svelte,’ the chunky Honda GL1000 hardly seems like a suitable prospect. Honda’s designers were clearly aiming for mile-munching comfort, rather than short runs to the local café.

Still, custom builders occasionally take a crack at it. And once in a while we strike gold—like this GL1000 from Manu and Yann of Sur Les Chapeaux De Roues.

Big, brazen and beautiful: a custom Honda GL1000 Gold Wing from France.
With a sizeable opposed-four at its core, there’s only so much you can slim the GL1000 down. But the boys from Brittany, France, have done a stunning job of giving the lumbering Gold Wing a dynamic look.

Big, brazen and beautiful: a custom Honda GL1000 Gold Wing from France.
They had their work cut out for them, though: this ’76 GL1000 was rescued from a barn, and was in a shoddy state. So the engine was treated to a full strip and rebuild, and a coat of red paint applied to the main block to highlight its heft.

Big, brazen and beautiful: a custom Honda GL1000 Gold Wing from France.
The frame has been reworked beyond the usual cut-n-loop. Yes, the rear end has been shortened, but there’s also trickery up front—to accommodate a BMW R-series fuel tank. This involved relocating the ignition system and building a one-off airbox setup.

Big, brazen and beautiful: a custom Honda GL1000 Gold Wing from France.
Interestingly, the BMW tank holds more fuel than the original Honda unit. Visually it works well, softening the bike’s square angles. The team cut and joined it to install a Motogadget speedo, and fitted a pop-up fuel cap.

Moving to the rear, the guys built a new seat, perched on an aluminum seat pan and tail. The side covers are hand-made too, as is the stainless steel exhaust system (capped with a single Supertrapp muffler).

Big, brazen and beautiful: a custom Honda GL1000 Gold Wing from France.
The front forks were lowered, and beefed up with a pair of custom-made sleeves; Hagon shocks were fitted at the rear. The bike’s also sporting a set of Shinko SHR 270 tires, lower bars, a smaller headlight and a neat LED tail light.

Big, brazen and beautiful: a custom Honda GL1000 Gold Wing from France.
But our favorite part is that eye-catching kaléidoscopique paint job. It took the guys three days (and eight layers of lacquer) to complete.

And the name ‘Sur Les Chapeaux De Roues’? It literally means ‘on the hubcaps,’ or traveling at speed. Which is exactly what we’d like to do on this brazen but beautiful Gold Wing—on a smooth, wide autoroute down to the south of France.

Sur Les Chapeaux De Roues | Facebook | Instagram | Photos by Sylvain Beauval

Big, brazen and beautiful: a custom Honda GL1000 Gold Wing from France.

21 Aug 17:46

grimlyfiendishfinds: $4.00 Anatomy Halloween Cards by...

21 Aug 14:44

The server understood the request, but is refusing to fulfill...

The server understood the request, but is refusing to fulfill it. 

via mflux

21 Aug 14:30

A long day

by willowbl00


worth it.

willowbl00 posted a photo:

A long day

21 Aug 13:41

karabraden: knitmeapony: …. I’m going to like this show, I...



…. I’m going to like this show, I think.

In that moment, we were all Miss Piggy.

21 Aug 09:32

Never Drink Alone Again!

21 Aug 09:26

micdotcom: Activists painted these statues at Stonewall to...


Activists painted these statues at Stonewall to honor the historic trans women of color 

In an interview this month, Miss Major Griffin-Gracy, a black and trans woman who was part of the riots, made a call to action: “Let’s get together a group of people to redo those goddamn statues across from the original Stonewall.” Two Brooklyn activists were listening. In a statement, they explained why this isn’t an act of vandalism.

21 Aug 09:24

spookychan: sizvideos: Sir Patrick Stewart Loves A Male...



Sir Patrick Stewart Loves A Male Kiss


Sir Patrick Stew going in for the hetro male kiss. This is kinda amazing the fact that it tears down all that macho bullshit and is closer to love and compassion of one’s fellow man. 

21 Aug 09:20

Show Problems Only

Show Problems Only

21 Aug 09:20

The application ran into a problem that it couldn’t...

The application ran into a problem that it couldn’t handle. 

Sorry for the inconvenience.

via higafox

19 Aug 09:31

the-queen-of-the-cats: Shut em down straightwhiteboystexting

18 Aug 19:37

zooophagous: cozyafternoons: arcadiuswild: Crinoid...




Crinoid (x)




18 Aug 15:42

pizzaismylifepizzaisking: asteria-of-mars: ultrafacts: psychot...


I'm in Sweden right now, and it's pretty dope. It's like social democracy won.






Source For more facts follow Ultrafacts

This is beautiful

all this power

and they tweet about goats

Goats are life in Sweden. Every year they put up a giant straw goat [x]

18 Aug 14:45

knightofleo: emilie nicolas | pstereo

17 Aug 21:35

"When minor characters who are also ethnic minorities start talking among themselves in their native..."

“When minor characters who are also ethnic minorities start talking among themselves in their native tongues, they sometimes take advantage of their invisibility to say things. Sometimes they break the Fourth Wall and start ranting about the movie director. Sometimes, they spout random obscenities or natter about their lousy lunch. It’s all in not-English, so whatever they say doesn’t matter! And the actual translations of their lines can be a secret source of hilarity in films where actors are instructed to use a Gratuitous Foreign Language (GFL) in order to make a scene sound more authentic. When some Native Americans cast in Westerns were told to speak their own language to add some authenticity, these actors took the opportunity to crudely editorialize about their director, which allegedly resulted in Native American audiences (in)explicably cracking up laughing during scenes that were meant to be dramatic.”


Minorities can be marginalized in film, but not silenced.

(via salon)

in the original Star Wars one of the “alien languages” that the rebels used was actually Swahili. My dad watched Return of the Jedi in Nairobi in a packed theater and during a space battle shot some nameless extra shouts “this is not my watermelon!” in swahili and the entire theater exploded into a mixture of laughing and cheering

(via yiffmaster)