'Each man takes the limits of his own field of vision for the limits of the world'
-- Arthur Schopenhauer, Essays and Aphorisms

'Artists are tricky fellows sir, forever shaping the world according to some design of their own'
-- Jonathan Strange, Jonathan Strange & Mr Norrell

Saturday, 21 January 2012

Lecture and presentation on wireless mesh networking by Tim Kindberg

It was a pleasure to be in the audience for Tim Kindberg's lunchtime presentation yesterday at the wonderful Pervasive Media Studio. The talk was titled Precious Cargo: Ferrying virtual resources physically in crowds. The presentation was a result of Kindberg's six weeks lecturing at IT University of Copenhagen, as a visiting professor there. His co-authored Distributed Systems: Concept and Design is one of the main texts used in programmes there.

Just a few points for consideration I want to list:

The volatility (that is the continual changes to density) of crowds, the asymmetries of knowledge and how this would affect communication.

The ability of drones to act as a conduit to restore lost communications between, for example, a military team and its command station. As early as 2004, miniature UAVs, one developed by the University of Florida, had an 11cm wingspan and flight duration capability of 15 minutes. I imagine similarly that drone development to house a 2.4GhZ disruptor to take down all bluetooth and 3G capability will be in development.

And my favorite - that the new Android 4.0 platform, forthcoming, will incorporate WiFi Direct.

Tim also cited Norbert Weiner's work, 'Human Use of Human Beings: Cybernetics and Society', originally published 1950.

"I told him to pay his car tax". Met have just won an appeal over use of kettling at G20, 2009 though it's unclear if this tactic would be employed at any protests during 2012 olympics because of the propensity for shocking images and footage to be viewed globally. The question was raised that anti-kettling tactics, including rapid random diffusion in opposed directions, seriously alter the crowd density and positions. There's a sense of extreme innovation from both the crowd and the control sides.

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