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June 13th, 2011

Is the internet really your bag?

Is the internet really your bag?

In last week’s Impromptu newsletter (sign up for it now, it’s award-winning, don’t you know…) I wrote about a great blog that I’d started following called Sociological Images. After wasting a good chunk of Friday night paging back through old posts, I also stumbled upon another great blog under the umbrella of The Society Pages project, also headed up by the Sociology department at the University of Minnesota – Cyborgology.

Cyborgology was created by Nathan Jurgenson and PJ Rey around the theory that “individuals and social groups have always been cyborgs because we have always existed in tandem with technology”. Not bad – I might just have to use that quote one of these days. Anyway, the subject matter of Cyborgology is as broad as humanity and technology themselves, with story hooks ranging from augmented reality to zombification. Page back and again you’ll unearth some absolute gems to tell all your friends about – cyborg or otherwise.

One item in particular today caught my eye despite the fact I had already read about it on the New York Times website. Why? Because the NYT ran a four-page feature about it that I had to navigate across ads and behind a paywall. Whereas Cyborgology raided Engadget, cut to the chase and went with little more than a pic cap. The result? Cyborgs win (and gadgets too, actually).

Anyway, see for yourself. This is how my ‘Site Of The Moment’ covered the ‘Internet in a Suitcase’ story….


“In a sort of 21st century version of Radio Free Europe, the US State Department has sponsored a project that develops suitcase-sized kits that set up cell-phone based mesh networks. These private networks are to be deployed in countries that have totalitarian governments (with anti-American sentiment).”

…and that’s it.

Of course if you do have more time on your hands (urgh, cyborg!) and don’t mind paying with dollars and eyeballs (arg!), then here’s the more in-depth NYT version. It’s also very interesting, actually. And well written. As long as your cyborg implants have sufficient browsing capacity to compute it…


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