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marcell mars

marcell mars's Public Library

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06 Jan 14

"Like all currency systems, Bitcoin comes with an implicit political agenda attached. Decisions we take about how to manage money, taxation, and the economy have consequences: by its consequences you may judge a finance system. Our current global system is pretty crap, but I submit that Bitcoin is worst."

30 Dec 13

"„Ništa se neće dogoditi“ (NSND) ne možemo nazvati konferencijom niti projektom, a nipošto (samo) druženjem. Ovaj random serijal piratskih i hakerskih (računalno i ino osviještenih, entuzijastičnih i socijalno aktivnih) okupljanja u prvom redu izmiče jezičnoj i konceptualnoj klasifikaciji na koju smo navikli, pa predstaviti stvar može biti zeznuto..."

22 Oct 13

"Javna biblioteka/Public Library dio je dvodnevnog programa posvećenog razmatranju suvremenih praksi arhiviranja znanja i umjetničke građe na internetu: avangardne i neoavangardne umjetnosti, (vizualne) poezije, eksperimentalne muzike, umjetničkih knjiga isključivo u svrhu dostupnosti materijala svima za potencijalna istraživanje i (samo-)obrazovanje."

22 Oct 13

"Javna je knjižnica hibridni projekt koji ima karakteristike umjetničkog, ali je prije svega projekt koji pokušava napraviti infrastrukturu za dijeljenje knjiga, i u daljnjoj projekciji, infrastrukturu dijeljenja znanja."

16 Oct 13

We're not used to Africa taking lead in new technology. Necessity, they say, is the mother of invention and it couldn't be more true in case of Africa, where pre-paid airtime is fast becoming the 'virtual' currency, overcoming conventional currency exchange and lack of banking infrastructure.

There are over 100 million mobile phones in Africa, and it is one of the fastest growing mobile regions. This number will increase to 378 million by 2011, according to Portio Research. Cell phones are already used for music downloads, text messaging, video games and personal piggy banking. Kenya is home to an impressive cutting-edge mobile tool: M-PESA, the world's only system for sending both minutes and money via SMS. (The "m" stands for mobile. Pesa is Swahili for money.) Airtime minutes automatically load onto the phone of their recipient. The cash is collected from one of the many M-PESA shops dotting the country.

  • We’re not used to Africa taking lead in new technology. Necessity, they say, is the mother of invention and it couldn’t be more true in case of Africa, where pre-paid airtime is fast becoming the ‘virtual’ currency, overcoming conventional currency exchange and lack of banking infrastructure.

     

    There are over 100 million mobile phones in Africa, and it is one of the fastest growing mobile regions. This number will increase to 378 million by 2011, according to Portio Research. Cell phones are already used for music downloads, text messaging, video games and personal piggy banking. Kenya is home to an impressive cutting-edge mobile tool: M-PESA, the world’s only system for sending both minutes and money via SMS. (The “m” stands for mobile. Pesa is Swahili for money.) Airtime minutes automatically load onto the phone of their recipient. The cash is collected from one of the many M-PESA shops dotting the country.

16 Oct 13

Having users already comfortable speaking in machine lanaguage is already a huge plus for Twitter. I already "d" you a direct message. Now I'd like to "p" you $5.

  • Having users already comfortable speaking in machine lanaguage is already a huge plus for Twitter. I already “d” you a direct message. Now I’d like to “p” you $5.
16 Oct 13

Free Software provides a radical form of openness which is, perhaps, a very American way of constituting a public (suspicious of the state and corporations, obsessed with ideas of balance and fairness, and a weird mix of individualism and populism). The question I think it raises is whether, as a politics it has a content. Free Software as it exists has an insanely refined focus on form over political content (and this is the source of the suspicion about the dominance
of the technical). But the question is: is this focus on form itself a particular kind of political content? At some level yes, but it is one that is open to, and maybe even encourages people to challenge it. It is a way of saying: if this is a (for instance) "libertarian" form, it is one that you are allowed to change--so make it less libertarian if you believe that will make it better. It says nothing, however, about whether people will have the power to do that, which is its weakest feature, its inability to incorporate the concrete fact that history has led us to this point.

  • Free Software provides a radical form of openness which is, perhaps,  a very American way of constituting a public (suspicious of the state  and corporations, obsessed with ideas of balance and fairness, and a  weird mix of individualism and populism). The question I think it  raises is whether, as a politics it has a content. Free Software as  it exists has an insanely refined focus on form over political  content (and this is the source of the suspicion about the dominance  of the technical). But the question is: is this focus on form itself  a particular kind of political content? At some level yes, but it is  one that is open to, and maybe even encourages people to challenge  it. It is a way of saying: if this is a (for instance) "libertarian"  form, it is one that you are allowed to change--so make it less  libertarian if you believe that will make it better. It says nothing,  however, about whether people will have the power to do that, which  is its weakest feature, its inability to incorporate the concrete  fact that history has led us to this point.
16 Oct 13

This book presents introductory economics ("principles") material using standard mathematical tools, including calculus. It is designed for a relatively sophisticated undergraduate who has not taken a basic university course in economics. It also contains the standard intermediate microeconomics material and some material that ought to be standard but is not. The book can easily serve as an intermediate microeconomics text. The focus of this book is on the conceptual tools and not on fluff. Most microeconomics texts are mostly fluff and the fluff market is exceedingly over-served by $100+ texts. In contrast, this book reflects the approach actually adopted by the majority of economists for understanding economic activity. There are lots of models and equations and no pictures of economists.

16 Oct 13

"When a 14 year old kid can blow up your business in his spare time, not because he hates you but because he loves you, then you got a problem."

  • “When a 14 year old kid can blow up your business in his spare time, not because he hates you but because he loves you, then you got a problem.”
16 Oct 13

"the demise of the magazine was contributed to by CEO Mitch Fox and his $500,000 a year salary, the expensive salespeople he hired, launching a travel title called everywhere and preparing a fashion magazine. If that's true, it's simply run of the mill magazine making hubris where people assume something that works at one level can be scaled to the next. Maybe this is also the end of an era where a powerful sales staff with serious marketing dollars can bring in more advertising than great content and loyal readers on its own."

  • the demise of the magazine was contributed to by CEO Mitch Fox and his $500,000 a year salary, the expensive salespeople he hired, launching a travel title called everywhere and preparing a fashion magazine. If that’s true, it’s simply run of the mill magazine making hubris where people assume something that works at one level can be scaled to the next. Maybe this is also the end of an era where a powerful sales staff with serious marketing dollars can bring in more advertising than great content and loyal readers on its own.
16 Oct 13

"Mifos is an industry-wide initiative to address the microfinance industry's information management challenge. Using the open source paradigm, we are creating a new service model that will increase access to technology for all microfinance institutions, ultimately enabling them to extend their reach to the world's poor. At the center of the initiative is the Mifos product, a freely available world-class management information system (MIS) that provides the core functionality required by microfinance institutions. The flexibility and scalability of the product means that we'll be able to simultaneously standardize common processes, accommodate regional variations, and scale for new innovations in the future."

  • Mifos is an industry-wide initiative to address the microfinance industry's information management challenge. Using the open source paradigm, we are creating a new service model that will increase access to technology for all microfinance institutions, ultimately enabling them to extend their reach to the world’s poor. 

     

    At the center of the initiative is the Mifos product, a freely available world-class management information system (MIS) that provides the core functionality required by microfinance institutions. The flexibility and scalability of the product means that we'll be able to simultaneously standardize common processes, accommodate regional variations, and scale for new innovations in the future.

     

16 Oct 13

"OpenSecrets.org is your nonpartisan guide to money's influence on U.S. elections and public policy. Whether you're a voter, journalist, activist, student or interested citizen, use our free site to shine light on your government. Count cash and make change."

  • OpenSecrets.org is your nonpartisan guide to money’s influence on U.S. elections and public policy. Whether you’re a voter, journalist, activist, student or interested citizen, use our free site to shine light on your government.
16 Oct 13

"Jim Buckmaster, the chief executive of Craigslist, caused lots of head-scratching Thursday as he tried to explain to a bunch of Wall Street types why his company is not interested in "monetizing" his ridiculously popular Web operation. Appearing at the UBS global media conference in New York, Mr. Buckmaster took questions from the bemused audience, which apparently could not get its collective mind around the notion that Craigslist exists to help Web users find jobs, cars, apartments and dates - and not so much to make money. Wendy Davis of MediaPost describes the presentation as a "a culture clash of near-epic proportions."

  • Jim Buckmaster, the chief executive of Craigslist, caused lots of head-scratching Thursday as he tried to explain to a bunch of Wall Street types why his company is not interested in “monetizing” his ridiculously popular Web operation. Appearing at the UBS global media conference in New York, Mr. Buckmaster took questions from the bemused audience, which apparently could not get its collective mind around the notion that Craigslist exists to help Web users find jobs, cars, apartments and dates — and not so much to make money.

     

    Wendy Davis of MediaPost describes the presentation as a “a culture clash of near-epic proportions.

  • Larry Dignan, writing on Between the Lines blog at ZDNet, called Mr. Buckmaster “delightfully communist,” and described the audience as “confused capitalists wondering how a company can exist without the urge to maximize profits.”
16 Oct 13

"My point is that there is a teleology-a theory about how intellectual property law must develop historically-hidden inside the argument I call the Internet Threat. The argument, which is touted endlessly by the content industries-and not without reason-can be reduced to this: The strength of intellectual property rights must vary inversely with the cost of copying. [...] To deal with the Internet, we need the Digital Millennium Copyright Act,13 the No Electronic Theft Act,14 the Sonny Bono Copyright Term Extension Act,15 and perhaps even the Collections of Information Antipiracy Act.16 As copying costs approach zero, intellectual property rights must approach perfect control. [...] To put it tersely: the logic of the Internet Threat runs in exactly the opposite direction to the Internet itself."

16 Oct 13

"While hippies, dopesters, and antiwar radicals were filling the streets of America's most tolerant city with rage, sweet smoke, and resistance, a quieter protest was brewing in the lofty, paneled offices of Wells Fargo. There, a young engineer named John Andrew "Mac" McQuown, Fouse (who like many musicians also happens to be a brilliant mathematician), and their self-described "skeptical, suspicious, careful, cautious, and slow-to-change" boss, James Vertin, were taking a hard look at the conventional wisdom that for a century had driven American portfolio management."

  • While hippies, dopesters, and antiwar radicals were filling the streets of America’s most tolerant city with rage, sweet smoke, and resistance, a quieter protest was brewing in the lofty, paneled offices of Wells Fargo. There, a young engineer named John Andrew “Mac” McQuown, Fouse (who like many musicians also happens to be a brilliant mathematician), and their self-described “skeptical, suspicious, careful, cautious, and slow-to-change” boss, James Vertin, were taking a hard look at the conventional wisdom that for a century had driven American portfolio management.
16 Oct 13

"For me it is possibly the most important political book that I have read since The Spirit Level.

The scale of abuse is staggering. More than half of world trade passes, often just on paper, through tax havens. More than half of all banking assets and a third of all multinational corporations' foreign direct investment is offshore where the assets and revenues escape not only tax, but also the rule of law and democratic regulation."

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