Re: Coming of Age?

John Pastore (venture@CANCUN.RCE.COM.MX)
Sun, 31 Mar 1996 13:03:57 +0000

On 30 Mar 96 at 11:46, Thomas Brunton wrote in Arch L:

> Maybe my e-mail system is not working properly, but I am distressed
> not to see any discussion of this article.

> My theory is that most U.S. archaeologists...don't have time for
> theorizing because they are so busy making a living.

Hi Tom and Everyone Concerned,

Regarding U.S. archaeologists not theorizing "because they are so
busy making a living", you may also want to include the very real and
present danger to their making a living at all if an archaeologist,
or anyone for that matter -anywhere, submits a theory that can be
perceived by those who have either been connected to the development
of and/or has immediate access to a new super-computer designed for
the "net-working and parallel mining of information" as "challenging"
their "authority of scholarship" since the passing of the internet
censorship bill .

Since the first "mining" test of a famed university's law library
and the subsequent passing of the internet censorship bill, which
signalled: "now with the passing of that wonderful bill we can do
what we want" in a usenet post to an extraordinary list of
collective recipients of faculty and scientists of the same
university as the law library -the site of much of the
super-computers development, that danger became more than just real,
and it can initially manifest itself as "e-mail systems not working
properly", and more.

Within academic news groups, moderators and would-be moderators, in
public and, possibly, also as concealed members, and list members
linked to the development, testing, and present, immediate access to
this super-computer have fostered and authored malicious e-mail
campaigns both on and off news group digests, and privately, against
whomever they deemed to have "challenged" their "authority". In, at
least, one newly proposed academic usenet news group they are now
proposing themselves as moderators, and, even, sysops moderators, and
they do not oppose the challenges to the validity of proposed
moderators, who are not so linked -challenges made by collegues who
are employees of the corporation of the super-computer, much less,
the validity of having such moderated public forums in public domain
whose charter is to the exclusion to anyone they, essentially, deem
might challenge their "authority". They also do not oppose a
premature call for the voting that will create the charter of the
group, and, thus, its existence, despite the precedence already
available to them of establishing closed forums whose empaneled
moderators compile the private communications submitted (such as in
"peer reviewing" groups) for the ultimate presentation of reports in
the public domain. They have and are applying their methods to
public-forum groups now without impunity -quite the contrary. An
inquisition is in the making, that, given the audacity to attempt
such in this day and age, can pale to the Burning of the Library of
Alexanderia if need be. Heretics are already being roasted.

Using the pretext of some self-annoited right to protect their
concepts of academia from "kooks", and the comeraderie it elicits, to
"trash" the "crackpots" they percieve of anyone who proposes theories
they deem unacceptable -theories which not only are not
"hyperdiffusionist", or such other popular targets to serve as
excuses, but also any theory which can relate to source information
or research in archaeology, genetics, osteology, anatomy, marine
biology, and biotechnics, they apply their methods while not only
usurping public domain for their own wants, but also for tapping the
internet, and, quite possibly, internal workgroup systems to control
the flow and "mining" of banked and networked information. Control
paramount to the very control of communications, education and
knowledge itself -much less the rights of anyone to theorize or even
to speak, much less theorize.

Press releases describing the super-computer indicate bionic
capabilities and the achievement of an artificial intelligence. A
protein has been synthesized and "folded out" (three dimensionalized
within the super-computer) indicating not only the image making
capabilities announced, but also the bionic applications made
possible, and especially the making of the arithmatic progression of
data processing a thing of the past, and geometric progression of
data processing a thing of the here and now -at least for the
privately owned corporation which has most likely developed it. Such
a development can be viewed as more than the mere ability to make
computations, but also the ability to conceptualize.

The very name of the corporation of the super-computer leaves no
room for doubt for what the objectives of the corporation has been:
to create a thinking machine, which the corporation's own press
releases claim to be among the four most powerful networking
computers in the world. Combined with its stated capabilities as a
connection machine, the list of developing scientists, and the list
of recipients addressed collectively as a political association of
scientists and faculty: the prospect of an artificial intelligence
having been born is awesome. The corporation's sudden emergence from
a chapter 16 proceeding leaves little doubt that whoever made the
private investment necessary to effect such a massive bail-out must
certainly think so. Of no doubt is the activities of those who have
been and are connected to the corporation.

No references were made to any ethics, or set of ethics, the
super-computer may or may not have been either supervised by or
imbued with, although it would not be unreasonable to speculate on
just what kind they could, given the nature of those described, much
less, those of who the private owner(s) might be. Obviously the the
corporation itself, whether those connected to the corporation are
direct employees or not, does not seem to make encumbant upon them
any 'conflict of interests' conditions. But, if so, to no avail. In
any event the computer is no R2-D2, or its controller or allegiance a
Luke Skywalker.

Given also the very recent news reports (Los Angeles Times, in the
"Monday Technology Special" Business Section entitled: "The Cutting
Edge") the various articles of the new technologies of "Network PCs"
scheduled for their market debuts this fall, the dimension of the
already awesome begins to exceed even itself. The articles describe
how the lack of expensive components such as hard disk drives and
intel chips will drop these internet terminals to five-hundred
dollars or less. While one of the various articles suggests the
Internet as a "Polling Place" including "Internet Voting", there are
no articles mentioning where any information generated by or received
from users of such devices will store their information, leaving one
to have to suspect internet information banks, and thus not even the
security of pulling ones phone line when suspecting unsolicited
mining expeditions, much less assaults, which can and does lock, or
remove, information on hard disk space even when such space is not on
the net, but accessible via modem on the hard disk space of personal

Disk space of such storage banks available via the net, much like
the vulnerability to assaults on the disk space of mailboxes
available via the net, will be only as safe as both the integrity of
their administrators and their ability to resist, much less detect,
assaults generating from such powerful super-computers. The prospect
of the control of "parallel networking and information mining" in
unscrupulous hands to even waylay information on route without the
knowledge of either the sender or receiver is mind-boggling as well.
When such assaults can be perpetrated especially by the present crop
of characters, much less, an artificial intelligence, the present
milieu exceeds even the word awesomeness itself.

While computers can be used creatively, they can also be used as
weapons. The facts are that such a super-computer for networking has
been developed and is being deployed on the internet. Persons
connected to the development of the super-computer and its use, and
the public forums of the net are politically motivated, so much so to
have, at least awaited, if not (and more likely), contrived the
internet censorship bill to perpetrate their ends -given the
extraordinary list of the scientists organized under a political
banner and the reputation of the university which is almost
overwhelmingly their locale.

Under the guise of protecting children, wittingly or not, from the
antics of pornograhpers, as espoused by their spokesmen, they now
perform their own. As if intent on rewriting history itself before
writing the future, their first victims has been in the field of
archaeology when theories have been advanced which, inadvertent as
they were, were deemed a "challenge" to their "authority."

Conspiracy? Following the " wonderful the censorship we can do what we want." post to the usenet mentioned, a
person did send a post to the same collective list of numerous
scientists and faculty at the university site mentioned asking: "Is
there a conspiracy going on here?" No answers were published onto
the usenet, at least, as part of a thread, but "Dejavus" reports a
100% response to the question.

Last but not least: Baudrillard quoted by Davenport in Anthro-L:

>The U.S., like everyone else, now has to face upto a soft world
>order, a soft situation. Power has become impotent.

Power has never been more potent, global, present, and invasive.

John Pastore
Writer in El Mayab
"The supreme good in education is expert discernment in
all things- the power to tell the good from the bad,
the genuine from the counterfeit, and to prefer the
good and the genuine to the bad and the counterfeit."

-Samuel Johnson