city:san francisco


  • Des histoires ou des expériences cachées et l’histoire publique d’un lieu | Entre les lignes entre les mots
    https://entreleslignesentrelesmots.blog/2018/12/12/des-histoires-ou-des-experiences-cachees-et-lhistoire-p

    par Didier Epsztajn

    Un livre à plusieurs voix. Fred Turner introduit par un court essai « Le mythe de la Silicon Valley », Mary Beth Meehan propose des photographies accompagnées ou non de récits. Loin des clichés et des images mythiques, un espace géographique et social incarné par des visages et des mots.

    Un lieu représentatif de « la mythologie américaine ». En fait de la mythologie étasunienne, les habitant·es des Usa semblent ne compter les autres américain·es que comme quantité négligeable. Fred Turner relie le mythe à d’autres mythes dans l’histoire de ce pays, « La Silicon Valley est « la cité sur la colline » de notre génération et les yeux du monde sont posés sur elle ». Les choses que l’on peut voir et ce qui est caché sous terre, les produits chimiques hautement toxiques enfouis par des entreprises locales entre les années 60 et 80 – la production est aujourd’hui externalisée et les déchets toxiques délocalisés… La terre empoisonnée, les effets sur la santé des habitant·es, les coûts du développement technologique comme effacé par l’enfouissement d’abord et la délocalisation ensuite. Derrière le soleil radieux et le vert des prairies des sources de mort, l’autre face de la technologie.

    Fred Turner revient sur l’histoire des Pères pèlerins, l’éthique protestante, « C’est au prix d’un rejet de leur propre humanité et de celle des peuples autochtones qui les avaient accueillis, que ces Puritains espéraient devenir une communauté de saints », la mainmise sur les richesses et la gloire « méritée », les puritains et la croyance en la prédestination. Aujourd’hui, des entrepreneurs de légende, les jeunes hommes blancs idéalisés de la valley, « Les connotations religieuses des histoires entrepreneuriales masquent la surreprésentation masculine et blanche parmi les élus de la vallée », dans l’oubli pour ne pas dire la négation des ouvrier·es qui ont construit ou entretenu les infrastructures et les bâtiments. L’auteur indique que plus de cinq cents mille migrant·es ont emménagé dans la zone de la baie de San Francisco durant les cinq dernières années et qu’en 2018, « 38% de la population vivant dans la vallée est née hors des Etats-Unis et plus de la moitié s’exprime à la maison dans une autre langue que l’anglais ». Il parle de l’extrême concentration de richesse, « La Silicon Valley n’est pas seulement l’une des régions les plus riches des Etats-Unis, c’est aussi l’une de celles où les inégalités sont les plus marquées », des prix exorbitants des logements, et, de la pauvreté qui touche un·e enfant sur dix, de déficits alimentaires, de celles et ceux dont les revenus ne leur permettent pas d’être « autosuffisants ». Pour reprendre le langage religieux des pères fondateurs, « Dieu a favorisé ceux qui pensaient ne pas avoir de race, ceux qui pouvaient tourner leur esprit vers l’étude de la Bible et leurs yeux vers le paradis à venir, dans lequel tous les corps se fondraient et seul l’esprit pur subsisterait »…

    N’essaye-t-on pas de nous faire croire à la « dématérialisation, » aux avenirs forcément radieux, aux possibilités soi-disant presque infinies des nouvelles technologies, dans le déni des conditions sociales de production, des matériaux dangereux utilisés, du gaspillage énergétique, des conditions de travail et d’exploitations des un·es et des dividendes d’autres…

    Les miroirs aux alouettes des Mark Zuckerberg ou des Steve Jobs et les exigences de nos concitoyen·nes, « Si nous voulons répondre à ces attentes, nous devons détourner notre regard du paradis et le poser sur terre ».

    Je conseille de lire le texte de Fred Turner, de regarder les photographies de Mary Beth Meehan en lisant les courts récits, « Si nous aspirons à l’excellence technologique, pourquoi n’avons-nous pas la même exigence en étant bons les uns envers les autres ? », puis de revenir à l’essai.

    Les images forment avec les mots un ensemble plus que signifiant… Et que dire du papier et des couleurs, de l’épaisseur du livre dans ces dimensions multiples, loin des réductions numériques ou de l’envahissement des technologies plus ou moins intrusives.

    Contre l’instant et les fantasmes technologiques, le temps du regard et de la réflexion.

    Mary Beth Meehan & Fred Turneur : Visages de la Silicon Valley

    Traduit de l’anglais (Etats-Unis) par Valérie Peugeot

    Editions C&F, Caen 2018, 112 pages, 33 euros

    Didier Epsztajn

    #Visages_Silicon_Valley #C&F_éditions #Fred_Turner


  • 50 years on, we’re living the reality first shown at the “Mother of All Demos” | Ars Technica
    https://arstechnica.com/information-technology/2018/12/50-years-on-were-living-the-reality-first-shown-at-the-mother-of-all-de

    A half century ago, computer history took a giant leap when Douglas Engelbart—then a mid-career 43-year-old engineer at Stanford Research Institute in the heart of Silicon Valley—gave what has come to be known as the “mother of all demos.”

    On December 9, 1968 at a computer conference in San Francisco, Engelbart showed off the first inklings of numerous technologies that we all now take for granted: video conferencing, a modern desktop-style user interface, word processing, hypertext, the mouse, collaborative editing, among many others.

    Even before his famous demonstration, Engelbart outlined his vision of the future more than a half-century ago in his historic 1962 paper, “Augmenting Human Intellect: A Conceptual Framework.”

    To open the 90-minute-long presentation, Engelbart posited a question that almost seems trivial to us in the early 21st century: “If in your office, you as an intellectual worker were supplied with a computer display, backed up by a computer that was alive for you all day, and was instantly responsible—responsive—to every action you had, how much value would you derive from that?”

    Of course at that time, computers were vast behemoths that were light-years away from the pocket-sized devices that have practically become an extension of ourselves.

    #Histoire_informatique #Mother_of_all_demos #Douglas_Engelbart


  • Initial Impression of #wordpress 5 from a former WordPress Startup CEO
    https://hackernoon.com/initial-impression-of-wordpress-5-from-a-former-wordpress-startup-ceo-a1

    Initial Impression of WordPress 5.0 from a former WordPress Startup CEOWordPress 5.0 isn’t the future, it just barely catches WordPress up to the present.WordPress 5.0 and the #gutenberg Content EditorI don’t talk to a lot of my WordPress friends anymore, and when I do, I don’t really talk WordPress with them. The politics of WordPress absolutely bum me out, and I am done fighting with Matt Mullenweg. For those of you who don’t know, I was pretty much blacklisted along with the entire city of San Francisco by WordPress.org and Automattic for reasons that no one has ever fully explained to me. I will save that for another time.I use to be very publicly active in the WordPress community, as I spent a good 5-years of my life running a WordPress startup called CyberChimps, but I got tired of (...)

    #matt-mullenweg #wordpress-web-development #hackernoon


  • NYC passes minimum pay wage for Uber and Lyft drivers
    https://www.engadget.com/2018/12/04/nyc-minimum-pay-wage-uber-lyft-drivers

    New York City’s Taxi and Limousine Commission voted today to establish a minimum wage for drivers working for companies like Uber, Lyft, Juno and Via. The city is the first in the US to set a minimum pay rate for app-based drivers. Going forward, the minimum pay will be set at $17.22 per hour after expenses, bringing it in line with the city’s $15 per hour minimum wage for typical employees, which will take effect at the end of the year. The additional $2.22 takes into account contract drivers’ payroll taxes and paid time off.

    “Today we brought desperately needed relief to 80,000 working families. All workers deserve the protection of a fair, livable wage and we are proud to be setting the new bar for contractor workers’ rights in America,” Jim Conigliaro, Jr., founder of the Independent Drivers Guild, said in a statement. “We are thankful to the Mayor, Commissioner Joshi and the Taxi and Limousine Commission, City Council Member Brad Lander and all of the city officials who listened to and stood up for drivers.”

    Earlier this year, the Taxi and Limousine Commission released the results of a study it requested, which recommended the new pay floor. And in August, NYC Mayor Bill de Blasio signed a bill requiring the commission to set a base pay rate. The Independent Drivers Guild, which has been working towards a minimum pay rate for some time, estimates that contract drivers in the city are currently earning just $11.90 per hour after expenses.

    Across the US, there’s been increased scrutiny on what companies like Uber and Lyft are actually paying their workers. In May, San Francisco subpoenaed the two companies for their pay records, and both companies have faced lawsuits over driver wages. Last year, NYC began requiring all ride-hailing services to offer an in-app tipping option.

    The rules passed today aren’t sitting well with the companies affected by them, however. Lyft told Engadget that it’s concerned that calculating pay per ride rather than per week will incentivize short rides over long rides. Further, Lyft says the new out of town rates — which require companies to pay drivers more when they take passengers outside of the city and return without a passenger — will be hard to implement before the new regulations take effect in 30 days.

    “Lyft believes all drivers should earn a livable wage and we are committed to helping drivers reach their goals,” the company told Engadget. “Unfortunately, the TLC’s proposed pay rules will undermine competition by allowing certain companies to pay drivers lower wages, and disincentive drivers from giving rides to and from areas outside Manhattan. These rules would be a step backward for New Yorkers, and we urge the TLC to reconsider them.”

    Uber released a statement as well ahead of today’s vote. The company’s director of public affairs, Jason Post, said:

    “Uber supports efforts to ensure that full-time drivers in NYC - whether driving with taxi, limo or Uber - are able to make a living wage, without harming outer borough riders who have been ignored by yellow taxi and underserved by mass transit.

    The TLC’s implementation of the City Council’s legislation to increase driver earnings will lead to higher than necessary fare increases for riders while missing an opportunity to immediately reduce congestion in Manhattan’s central business district.

    The TLC’s rules does not take into account incentives or bonuses forcing companies to raise rates even higher. Companies use incentives and bonuses as part of driver earnings to ensure reliability citywide by providing a monetary incentive to drivers to complete trips in areas that need them the most (such as outside of Manhattan).

    In addition, the rules miss an opportunity to immediately deal with congestion in Manhattan’s central business district. A recent TLC study authored by economists James Parrott and Michael Reich describes a formula that would financially punish companies who have low utilization rates. Instead, the TLC is choosing the adopt an industry-wide utilization rate that does not hold bases accountable for keeping cars full with paying passengers.”

    #USA #New_York #Uber #Mindestlohn


  • Chicago Tribune - We are currently unavailable in your region
    http://articles.chicagotribune.com/1997-01-05/news/9701050123_1_artifacts-looted-cambodian

    In 1924, French writer Andre Malraux was arrested and imprisoned when he removed nearly a ton of stone carvings and ornaments from a temple in the remote Cambodian jungle and trundled them away in

    Unfortunately, our website is currently unavailable in most European countries. We are engaged on the issue and committed to looking at options that support our full range of digital offerings to the EU market. We continue to identify technical compliance solutions that will provide all readers with our award-winning journalism.

    #Malraux #pillage #internet_restreint #TOR_is_love

    • LOOTED CAMBODIAN TREASURES COME HOME
      New York Times News ServiceCHICAGO TRIBUNE

      January 5, 1997 Phnom Penh

      In 1924, French writer Andre Malraux was arrested and imprisoned when he removed nearly a ton of stone carvings and ornaments from a temple in the remote Cambodian jungle and trundled them away in oxcarts.

      In 1980, starving refugees fleeing the terrors of the Khmer Rouge arrived at the border with Thailand lugging stone heads lopped from temple statues and ornate silverwork looted from museums.

      Today the looting continues, from hundreds of temples and archaeological sites scattered through the jungles of this often-lawless country, sometimes organized by smuggling syndicates and abetted by antique dealers in Thailand and elsewhere.

      Entire temple walls covered with bas-relief are hacked into chunks and trucked away by thieves. Villagers sell ancient pottery for pennies. Armed bands have attacked monks at remote temples to loot their treasures and have twice raided the conservation office at the temple complex of Angkor.

      But the tide is slowly beginning to turn. With the Cambodian government beginning a campaign to seek the return of the country’s treasures, and with cooperation from curators and customs agents abroad, 1996 was a significant year for the recovery of artifacts.

      Fifteen objects have come home, in three separate shipments from three continents, raising hopes that some of the more significant artifacts may be returned.

      In July, the U.S. returned a small head of the god Shiva that had been seized by Customs in San Francisco. Cambodia is a largely Buddhist nation, but over the centuries its history and its art have seen successive overlays of Buddhist and Hindu influences. At some temples, statues of Buddha mingle with those of the Hindu deities, Brahma, Shiva and Vishnu.

      In September, the Thai government returned 13 large stone carvings, some up to 800 years old, that had been confiscated by Thai police from an antique shop in Bangkok in 1990. Thai officials said the return was a gesture of good will meant to combat that country’s image as a center of antique trafficking.

      And in December, a British couple returned a stone Brahma head that they had bought at auction. Its Cambodian origin was confirmed by a list, published by UNESCO, of 100 artifacts that had disappeared from an inventory compiled in the 1960s.

      In addition, Sebastien Cavalier, a UNESCO representative here, said he was expecting the return as early as next month of a 10th Century Angkorean head of Shiva that is now in the Metropolitan Museum in New York.

      Six bronze pieces sent to the Guimet Museum in Paris for cleaning and safekeeping in the 1970s could also be returned in the coming months, he said.

      Now with the launching in January of a major traveling exhibition of Khmer artifacts—to Paris, Washington, Tokyo and Osaka— accompanied by an updated catalog of some of Cambodia’s missing treasures, Cavalier said he hopes the returns will accelerate.

      The exhibit will be on display in Paris from Jan. 31 to May 26, at the National Gallery in Washington from June 30 to Sept. 28, and in Japan from Oct. 28 to March 22, 1998.

      But the pillage of artifacts continues at a far greater pace than the returns.

      Government control remains tenuous in much of Cambodia and the Ministry of Culture has little money for the protection of antiquities. There is little check on armed groups and corrupt officials throughout the countryside, where hundreds of temples remain unused and unguarded or overgrown with jungle.

      Truckloads of treasures regularly pass through military checkpoints into Thailand, art experts say. Heavy stone artifacts are towed in fishing nets to cargo ships off the southern coast. In Thailand, skilled artisans repair or copy damaged objects and certificates of authenticity are forged.

      Most of Cambodia’s artistic patrimony remains uncatalogued, and Cavalier said there was no way to know the full extent of what had already been stolen over the last decades, or what remained scattered around the country.


  • Former #airbnb #blockchain Leader Focuses on Mainstreaming #crypto
    https://hackernoon.com/former-airbnb-blockchain-leader-focuses-on-mainstreaming-crypto-8f09bf43

    Sida Wang creator of Airbnb’s Blockchain community, BlockbnbI recently had the opportunity to interview the founder of blockchain-based Partiko, Sida Wang, who you might be surprised to find out worked for Airbnb as a software engineer. Not only that, but Sida was also the founder of Airbnb’s blockchain community, Blockbnb.Sida Wang worked as a software engineer for Airbnb in San Francisco until fairly recently, when he decided to go full force with his blockchain-based #startup, Partiko.I was curious what he learned while working for Airbnb:Stellabelle: What was the first program you built and how old were you?Sida: I was 15 years old when I made my first computer program with a language called GV Basics, and it was a snake game. The game got popular among my classmates, which motivated me (...)

    #bitcoin


  • Lyft Is Not Your Friend
    http://jacobinmag.com/2018/10/the-myth-of-the-woke-brand-uber-lyft-capitalism

    10.25.2018 BY MEAGAN DAY #UNITED_STATES #CAPITAL #CONJECTURES #LIBERALISM

    Lyft is the latest brand trying to build market share by posing as a “progressive” corporation. But the fight can’t be good corporations against bad ones — it’s working people against capitalism.
    In early 2017, liberals hit on a new strategy to resist the nascent Trump administration: #DeleteUber.

    It started when New York City’s taxi drivers refused to service JFK airport to protest Trump’s travel ban targeting Muslim-majority countries, and Uber was spotted leveraging the ensuing crisis for profit. Then Uber CEO Travis Kalanick came under fire for accepting an appointment to Trump’s economic advisory council. He announced his resignation from the council, but only weeks later a video leaked of Kalanick reprimanding a driver for his company.

    Amid various ensuing scandals, Kalanick stepped down as CEO of Uber, but by then millions of consumers had turned on the brand in protest, deleting the Uber app from their phone and opting instead for the rideshare giant’s rival Lyft.

    Lyft leaned in, eagerly branding itself as the progressive alternative to Uber by pledging a $1 million donation to the ACLU and trotting out celebrities to promote it as a company committed to “doing things for the right reasons.” Lyft, of course, operates on the same labor model as Uber — its drivers are not employees but independent contractors, and are therefore denied all the benefits and protections that workers receive under more ideal circumstances. Nevertheless, a new refrain rang out across liberaldom: “I don’t use Uber, I use Lyft.”

    What socialists understand that liberals don’t is that brands are corporate enterprises, and corporate enterprises are fundamentally motivated by the pursuit of profit — even in their ostentatious acts of charity and wokeness.

    Three surefire ways to maximize profit are: suppressing labor costs by paying workers as little as you can get away with, lobbying the state for deregulation and lower taxes, and opening new markets by finding new things to commodify and sell. Businesses will always pursue these avenues of profit maximization where they can. It’s not a matter of ethics but of market discipline: if they don’t, they run the risk of losing out to the competition and eventually capsizing.

    Sometimes corporations do things for publicity that make it seem like their interests are not fundamentally misaligned with those of the working-class majority, who rely on decent wages and well-funded public services. But those efforts are meant to sustain public confidence in a given corporation’s brand, which is occasionally necessary for keeping up profits, as Uber’s losses in 2017 demonstrate. When corporate profits come into direct conflict with active measures to improve people’s wellbeing, corporations will always select the former. Case in point: Lyft just donated $100k to the campaign against a ballot measure that would create a tax fund to house the homeless in San Francisco, where the company is based.

    Why did the progressive alternative to Uber do this? Well, because the company doesn’t want to pay higher taxes. Because high taxes imperil profits, and profits are the point. Another likely rationale is to build stronger bonds with pro-business advocacy groups in San Francisco, so that the company will have allies if the city decides to implement regulations against ride-sharing services, which is rumored to be a possibility.

    Lyft has already mastered the art of suppressing labor costs and opening new markets. Next on the wish list, low taxes and deregulation. It’s pretty formulaic when you get down to it.

    San Francisco is home to an estimated 7,500 homeless people. Proposition C would tap the large corporations that benefit from the city’s public infrastructure to double the city’s homelessness budget in an attempt to resolve the crisis. The corporations opposing Proposition C say that the move would imperil jobs. This is not an analysis, it’s a threat. What they’re saying is that if the city reaches too far into their pockets, they’ll take their business elsewhere, draining the region of jobs and revenue as punishment for government overreach. It’s a mobster’s insinuation: Nice economy, shame if something happened to it. Meanwhile thousands of people sleep in the streets, even though the money to shelter them is within the city’s borders.

    Of course, in every struggle over taxes and industry regulation there may be a few canny corporate outliers looking to ingratiate their brand to the public by bucking the trend. In the case of Proposition C, it’s Salesforce, whose CEO Marc Benioff has made a public display of support for the ballot measure. But before you rush to praise Benioff, consider that only two months ago he lauded Trump’s tax cuts for fueling “aggressive spending” and injecting life into the economy.

    You could spend your life as an engaged consumer hopping from brand to brand, as liberals often do, pledging allegiance to this one and protesting that one to the beat of the new cycle drum. You could delete Lyft from your phone the same way you did with Uber, and find another rideshare app that you deem more ethical, until that one inevitably disappoints you too.

    Or you could press pause, stop scrambling for some superior consumption choice to ease your conscience, and entertain the socialist notion that deep down all corporations are objectively the same. They all exist to maximize return on investment for the people who own them. They are all in competition with each other to plunder our commons most effectively, with the lowest overhead, which means compensating the least for employees’ work. And when the rubber meets the road, they will all prioritize private profits over the wellbeing of those who own no productive assets, which is the vast majority of the people on the planet. They will demonstrate these priorities on a case-by-case basis, and on a massive global scale so long as capitalism prevails.

    “We’re woke,” said Lyft CEO John Zimmerman at the height of the Uber scandal. It was horseshit — it always is. And until liberals stop believing than any brand can be truly “woke,” or can offer a genuine alternative to the predatory behavior they observe in other “unwoke” brands, they’ll be unable to mount a meaningful resistance to anything.

    Whether we want to ensure clean drinking water for the residents of Flint or to shelter the homeless of San Francisco, we have to draw clear battle lines that are up to the challenge. The fight can’t be good corporations against bad corporations. It has to be working people against capitalism.

    #USA #transport #disruption #Lyft


  • Le paradis perdu | Josh Edelson
    https://making-of.afp.com/le-paradis-perdu

    « Quand d’énormes incendies ont frappé la Californie l’an dernier les gens ont cru qu’il s’agissait d’une anomalie », écrit Josh Edelson, photographe basé à San Francisco. « Ils s’attendaient à ce que la saison des feux de forêt revienne à des épisodes normaux, comme l’Etat en connait depuis des décennies. Et puis + Camp fire + est arrivé ». Source : Making-of


  • Is wearing a face mask the new normal for Californians? TreeHugger
    https://www.treehugger.com/climate-change/wearing-face-mask-new-normal-californians.html

    It seems almost petty to be complaining about air quality in San Francisco when so many people are dead or missing from the actual Camp Fire in California. However, the fact remains that, right now, the air quality in the City is the worst in the world, worse than Delhi, worse than Beijing.

    #air #Californie


  • En Californie, l’ère des « tempêtes de feu »
    https://www.mediapart.fr/journal/international/181118/en-californie-l-ere-des-tempetes-de-feu

    Ces derniers jours, de nombreux commentateurs ont fait référence à un article prémonitoire publié en 1995 dans une revue historique par le théoricien et historien #Mike_Davis, professeur à l’université de #Californie, auteur de nombreux ouvrages sur la ville néolibérale – il a notamment publié en France City of Quartz, Paradis infernaux, ou Le stade Dubaï du capitalisme.

    Un feu venait alors de détruire dix maisons à Malibu. « Laissons Malibu brûler », écrivit Mike Davis. « Cela ne va qu’empirer, prévenait Davis, convaincu de l’absurdité de faire payer la collectivité pour des maisons presque mécaniquement vouées à brûler. De tels désastres périodiques seront inévitables : installer votre maison à Malibu et vous finirez par être confrontés aux flammes. »

    Il y a vingt-trois ans, l’article décrivait par le menu la privatisation et l’« aristocratisation » progressive du territoire de Malibu peu à peu planté de « châteaux », au mépris de l’environnement et des règles de sûreté élémentaires.

    Davis annonçait aussi l’émergence d’une nouvelle ère où les « tempêtes de #feu suburbaines » risquaient de devenir plus « apocalyptiques », quasiment impossibles à combattre. « La densité nouvelle du logement sur les collines a transformé la bataille contre les feux de forêt : c’était une guerre de manœuvres, cela devient une bataille de rues. » À l’époque, son texte avait été accueilli par un déluge de critiques.

    Il y a un peu plus d’un an, alors que le feu venait de ravager le magnifique paysage de vignes de Sonoma et Santa Rosa, juste au nord de San Francisco, Mike Davis publiait dans la London Review of Books un texte lumineux, « El Diablo in Wine Country », pointant le refus persistant des Californiens d’admettre que leur « paradis » est en train de devenir un enfer.

    « Il y a, écrit-il, une suffisance mortifère à l’œuvre derrière les politiques environnementales “mainstream” en Californie. Certains pointent le feu, d’autres le changement climatique, mais tous ignorent le pouvoir destructeur de la finance et de l’immobilier qui pousse à la surburbanisation de nos paysages sauvages de plus en plus “enflammables”. »

    Après chaque incendie, expliquait Davis, « le paradis est vite restauré, avec des maisons plus immenses que les précédentes ». Elles sont confortables, suréquipées, situées dans des endroits sublimes où l’on peut passer des heures à regarder les étoiles. Mais elles sont aussi situées dans des culs-de-sac cernés de maquis.

    « Une version rustique du couloir de la mort », commentait Davis, preuve « de l’absurdité de toute planification rationnelle dans une société fondée sur le capitalisme immobilier ».

    • En Californie, le blé protège des brasiers
      https://www.liberation.fr/planete/2018/11/15/en-californie-le-ble-protege-des-brasiers_1692372

      Dans la patrie du capitalisme débridé, l’inégalité existe pourtant, aussi, face au feu. Selon le site TMZ, spécialisé dans les célébrités, Kim Kardashian et Kanye West ont ainsi recruté une équipe privée de pompiers pour combattre les flammes qui menaçaient leur villa à 60 millions de dollars. Ces derniers ont creusé des fossés pour stopper la propagation de l’incendie. La résidence a été épargnée, tout comme celles de nombreux voisins reconnaissants, assure TMZ. Pour l’historienne Amy Greenberg, citée par The Atlantic, l’exemple des Kardashian illustre « les ramifications de la disparité économique aux Etats-Unis. […] Les riches ne sont pas censés disposer de "meilleurs" pompiers ».

      Le couple star n’est pas le seul à pouvoir se payer une protection haut de gamme en cas d’incendie. Depuis 2005, le géant des assurances AIG, pionnier en la matière, propose à ses clients les plus fortunés, membres du très sélect « Private Client Group », un service exclusif. Sobrement baptisé « Wildfire Protection Unit » (« Unité de protection contre les incendies »), il déploie ses camions et équipes pour protéger les maisons de ses richissimes clients. Selon NBC, 42 % des membres du classement des 400 Américains les plus fortunés, établi par le magazine Forbes, appartiennent au Private Client Group.

    • As Inmates, They Fight California’s Fires. As Ex-Convicts, Their Firefighting Prospects Wilt.
      https://www.nytimes.com/2018/11/15/us/california-paying-inmates-fight-fires.html

      As the Camp Fire rages in Northern California, the deadliest and most destructive in state history, and wildfires scorch western Los Angeles, about 1,500 inmates have been deployed to help fight active fires, out of a firefighter total of roughly 9,400, according to California state officials.

      [...] California relies on prisoners to fight wildfires more than any other state. In 1946, the state opened Camp Rainbow in Fallbrook, which housed inmates to fight fires. Over the decades, the program would grow.

      Today, 3,700 inmates work at 44 fire camps across the state, said Alexandra Powell, a spokeswoman for the California Department of Corrections and Rehabilitation, which helps run the fire camp program.

      https://seenthis.net/messages/656494


  • Will The Real Robot Please Stand Up
    https://hackernoon.com/will-the-real-robot-please-stand-up-6199e0e1665e?source=rss----3a8144eab

    AI, #blockchain, and the value of being human with Singularity University’s Reese Jones and Project Shivom’s Henry Ines at Blockchain Economic ForumMartine Paris / Via Martine ParisWhat does the world’s first decentralized AI humanoid, Sophia the Robot, have to do with owning the data that makes us human?“A lot!” said Henry Ines, Chief Innovation Officer of Shivom, in his interview with me at the recent Blockchain Economic Forum in San Francisco. Ines, a former DFJ DragonFund partner, just completed a $35 million ICO to fund the building of Shivom’s #genomics hub and is now partnering with the makers of Sophia’s brain, SingularityNET, to use AI-driven analytics and machine learning tools to power the dawn of precision medicine.“A Tylenol that’s right for you might be different than a Tylenol (...)

    #robotics #cryptocurrency #artificial-intelligence


  • Quitting Instagram : She’s one of the millions disillusioned with social media. But she also helped create it.

    https://www.washingtonpost.com/amphtml/technology/2018/11/14/quitting-instagram-shes-one-millions-disillusioned-with-social-media

    “In the early days, you felt your post was seen by people who cared about you and that you cared about,” said Richardson, who left Instagram in 2014 and later founded a start-up. “That feeling is completely gone for me now.”

    Je me souviens très bien de cette période là, Instagram était une quasi communauté qui avait, comme le disait Bailey Richardson, l’objectif tourné vers le monde et non l’inverse. J’ai participé à des Instameet ou des instachallenge ; Exemple le #Achallenge, poster une photo avec un A dedans. Un concours avec un seul hashtag :) où le gagnant avait recueillit 3000 likes sur une semaine de jeu :D maintenant c’est le symbole d’une mauvaise communication sur Instagram. Un flop quoi. Je trouvais ça ludique, amusant, bien veillant et surtout cohérent avec la culture numérique.

    When Richardson joined Instagram in February 2012, at age 26, the former art history major was drawn to what was then a fast-growing indie platform for photographers, hipsters and artistic-types who wanted to share interesting or beautiful things they discovered about the world. At that time, Instagram was “a camera that looked out into the world," said one of the company’s first engineers, "versus a camera that was all about myself, my friends, who I’m with.”

    Richardson ran the start-up’s blog as well as the official @instagram account from the company’s offices in San Francisco’s South Park neighborhood. Before there were software algorithms suggesting accounts to follow, Richardson selected featured Instagrammers by hand. For the most devoted users, she organized in-person “Insta-meets” in places as far-flung as Moscow and North Korea.

    “We felt like stewards of that passion,” Richardson said.

    Richardson moved to New York after leaving Instagram. (Yana Paskova/For The Washington Post)

    One of the first people she featured prominently was an early Instagrammer in Spain. The exposure Richardson gave @IsabelitaVirtual, an amateur photographer whose real name is Isabel Martinez, helped Martinez become one of the most popular Instagram users in the country and led to a career in high-end fashion photography.

    Both say that type of random connection that resulted in their friendship is hardly possible in the current iteration of Instagram. Too many people to follow, too much showmanship, too many posts flickering by, they say. “I don’t even see her posts anymore,” Richardson said. Martinez told The Post that while she wouldn’t quit Instagram for professional reasons, the app has in recent years become more anxiety-producing than pleasurable for her.

    #social_media #Facebook #Instagram #réseaux_sociaux


  • Founder Interviews : Sid Sijbrandij of #gitlab
    https://hackernoon.com/founder-interviews-sid-sijbrandij-of-gitlab-862c391a3929?source=rss----3

    Learn how Sid Sijbrandij and the GitLab team went from launching on HackerNews to a $100M Series D in 6 years.Davis Baer: What’s your background, and what are you working on?I’m originally from the Netherlands but have lived in San Francisco for nearly four years now. I’ve been involved in a number of different ventures — from selling programmable infrared receivers to starting a recreational submarine company — but seeing the first Ruby code in 2007 changed everything. I loved it so much I learned to program and made it my profession.This was a natural stepping stone to GitLab, which I co-founded. The first single application for the entire DevOps lifecycle, GitLab is built on open source, leveraging the community contributions of thousands of developers and millions of users to continuously (...)

    #startup #founders #davis-baer #founder-stories


  • Rainforest destruction from gold mining hits all-time high in Peru
    https://phys.org/news/2018-11-rainforest-destruction-gold-all-time-high.html

    That’s an area larger than San Francisco and 30 percent more than previously reported.

    “The scale of the deforestation is really shocking,” said Luis Fernandez, executive director of CINCIA and research associate professor in the department of biology.

    https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=uTUhUZ49v3g


  • Lyft Is Not Your Friend
    http://jacobinmag.com/2018/10/the-myth-of-the-woke-brand-uber-lyft-capitalism

    BY MEAGAN DAY
    Lyft is the latest brand trying to build market share by posing as a “progressive” corporation. But the fight can’t be good corporations against bad ones — it’s working people against capitalism.

    In early 2017, liberals hit on a new strategy to resist the nascent Trump administration: #DeleteUber.

    It started when New York City’s taxi drivers refused to service JFK airport to protest Trump’s travel ban targeting Muslim-majority countries, and Uber was spotted leveraging the ensuing crisis for profit. Then Uber CEO Travis Kalanick came under fire for accepting an appointment to Trump’s economic advisory council. He announced his resignation from the council, but only weeks later a video leaked of Kalanick reprimanding a driver for his company.

    Amid various ensuing scandals, Kalanick stepped down as CEO of Uber, but by then millions of consumers had turned on the brand in protest, deleting the Uber app from their phone and opting instead for the rideshare giant’s rival Lyft.

    Lyft leaned in, eagerly branding itself as the progressive alternative to Uber by pledging a $1 million donation to the ACLU and trotting out celebrities to promote it as a company committed to “doing things for the right reasons.” Lyft, of course, operates on the same labor model as Uber — its drivers are not employees but independent contractors, and are therefore denied all the benefits and protections that workers receive under more ideal circumstances. Nevertheless, a new refrain rang out across liberaldom: “I don’t use Uber, I use Lyft.”

    What socialists understand that liberals don’t is that brands are corporate enterprises, and corporate enterprises are fundamentally motivated by the pursuit of profit — even in their ostentatious acts of charity and wokeness.

    Three surefire ways to maximize profit are: suppressing labor costs by paying workers as little as you can get away with, lobbying the state for deregulation and lower taxes, and opening new markets by finding new things to commodify and sell. Businesses will always pursue these avenues of profit maximization where they can. It’s not a matter of ethics but of market discipline: if they don’t, they run the risk of losing out to the competition and eventually capsizing.

    Sometimes corporations do things for publicity that make it seem like their interests are not fundamentally misaligned with those of the working-class majority, who rely on decent wages and well-funded public services. But those efforts are meant to sustain public confidence in a given corporation’s brand, which is occasionally necessary for keeping up profits, as Uber’s losses in 2017 demonstrate. When corporate profits come into direct conflict with active measures to improve people’s wellbeing, corporations will always select the former. Case in point: Lyft just donated $100k to the campaign against a ballot measure that would create a tax fund to house the homeless in San Francisco, where the company is based.

    Why did the progressive alternative to Uber do this? Well, because the company doesn’t want to pay higher taxes. Because high taxes imperil profits, and profits are the point. Another likely rationale is to build stronger bonds with pro-business advocacy groups in San Francisco, so that the company will have allies if the city decides to implement regulations against ride-sharing services, which is rumored to be a possibility.

    Lyft has already mastered the art of suppressing labor costs and opening new markets. Next on the wish list, low taxes and deregulation. It’s pretty formulaic when you get down to it.

    San Francisco is home to an estimated 7,500 homeless people. Proposition C would tap the large corporations that benefit from the city’s public infrastructure to double the city’s homelessness budget in an attempt to resolve the crisis. The corporations opposing Proposition C say that the move would imperil jobs. This is not an analysis, it’s a threat. What they’re saying is that if the city reaches too far into their pockets, they’ll take their business elsewhere, draining the region of jobs and revenue as punishment for government overreach. It’s a mobster’s insinuation: Nice economy, shame if something happened to it. Meanwhile thousands of people sleep in the streets, even though the money to shelter them is within the city’s borders.

    Of course, in every struggle over taxes and industry regulation there may be a few canny corporate outliers looking to ingratiate their brand to the public by bucking the trend. In the case of Proposition C, it’s Salesforce, whose CEO Marc Benioff has made a public display of support for the ballot measure. But before you rush to praise Benioff, consider that only two months ago he lauded Trump’s tax cuts for fueling “aggressive spending” and injecting life into the economy.

    You could spend your life as an engaged consumer hopping from brand to brand, as liberals often do, pledging allegiance to this one and protesting that one to the beat of the new cycle drum. You could delete Lyft from your phone the same way you did with Uber, and find another rideshare app that you deem more ethical, until that one inevitably disappoints you too.

    Or you could press pause, stop scrambling for some superior consumption choice to ease your conscience, and entertain the socialist notion that deep down all corporations are objectively the same. They all exist to maximize return on investment for the people who own them. They are all in competition with each other to plunder our commons most effectively, with the lowest overhead, which means compensating the least for employees’ work. And when the rubber meets the road, they will all prioritize private profits over the wellbeing of those who own no productive assets, which is the vast majority of the people on the planet. They will demonstrate these priorities on a case-by-case basis, and on a massive global scale so long as capitalism prevails.

    “We’re woke,” said Lyft CEO John Zimmerman at the height of the Uber scandal. It was horseshit — it always is. And until liberals stop believing than any brand can be truly “woke,” or can offer a genuine alternative to the predatory behavior they observe in other “unwoke” brands, they’ll be unable to mount a meaningful resistance to anything.

    Whether we want to ensure clean drinking water for the residents of Flint or to shelter the homeless of San Francisco, we have to draw clear battle lines that are up to the challenge. The fight can’t be good corporations against bad corporations. It has to be working people against capitalism.

    #USA #Lyft #Uber #Arbeit


  • Facebook admits failings over incitement to violence in Myanmar
    https://www.theguardian.com/technology/2018/nov/06/facebook-admits-it-has-not-done-enough-to-quell-hate-in-myanmar

    Report finds platform was used to spread hate and cause harm, and that posts have been linked to offline violence Facebook has admitted it did not do enough to prevent the incitement of violence and hate speech in Myanmar, after a report it commissioned concluded that it had become a platform for harmful and racially-inflammatory content. The report by San Francisco-based nonprofit Business for Social Responsibility (BSR) found that, in Myanmar, “Facebook has become a means for those (...)

    #Facebook #algorithme #manipulation #Islam


  • HARDY FOX -------- BRAIN CANCER -------- 1945 - 2018
    http://www.hardyfox.com/home

    Hardy Fox grew up in Texas. After college he moved to San Francisco reveling in the free love days of 1967-68. He co-founded the much loved cult band, the Residents, where he was primary composer.

    Hardy retired from The Residents in 2015 but continued to compose for the group through 2018. In addition to his work with that band, he has recorded as a solo artist under various names including Charles Bobuck, Combo de Mechanico, Sonido de la Noche, Chuck, TAR, among others.

    #the_residents


  • #Harcèlement_sexuel : des manifestations de grande ampleur chez #Google

    “Les accusations de harcèlement chez Google déclenchent des manifestations”, écrit à sa une le Wall Street Journal ce vendredi 2 novembre. De Singapour à New York, en passant par Dublin et San Francisco, des milliers d’employés de la société californienne sont descendus dans la rue jeudi 1er novembre pour “protester contre une #culture_de_travail qui, d’après eux, permet la #promotion et le succès de personnes coupables de harcèlement sexuel”, explique le quotidien économique américain.


    https://www.courrierinternational.com/une/harcelement-sexuel-des-manifestations-de-grande-ampleur-chez-
    #violences_sexuelles #MeToo #manifestation #résistance #genre #travail


  • A Dark Consensus About Screens and Kids Begins to Emerge in Silicon Valley - The New York Times
    https://www.nytimes.com/2018/10/26/style/phones-children-silicon-valley.html

    SAN FRANCISCO — The people who are closest to a thing are often the most wary of it. Technologists know how phones really work, and many have decided they don’t want their own children anywhere near them.

    A wariness that has been slowly brewing is turning into a regionwide consensus: The benefits of screens as a learning tool are overblown, and the risks for addiction and stunting development seem high. The debate in Silicon Valley now is about how much exposure to phones is O.K.

    “Doing no screen time is almost easier than doing a little,” said Kristin Stecher, a former social computing researcher married to a Facebook engineer. “If my kids do get it at all, they just want it more.”

    Among those is Chris Anderson, the former editor of Wired and now the chief executive of a robotics and drone company. He is also the founder of GeekDad.com.

    “On the scale between candy and crack cocaine, it’s closer to crack cocaine,” Mr. Anderson said of screens.

    Technologists building these products and writers observing the tech revolution were naïve, he said.

    “We thought we could control it,” Mr. Anderson said. “And this is beyond our power to control. This is going straight to the pleasure centers of the developing brain. This is beyond our capacity as regular parents to understand.”

    He has five children and 12 tech rules. They include: no phones until the summer before high school, no screens in bedrooms, network-level content blocking, no social media until age 13, no iPads at all and screen time schedules enforced by Google Wifi that he controls from his phone. Bad behavior? The child goes offline for 24 hours.

    “I didn’t know what we were doing to their brains until I started to observe the symptoms and the consequences,” Mr. Anderson said.

    #Addiction #Education #Ecrans #Enfants


  • Urban Planning Guru Says Driverless Cars Won’t Fix Congestion - The New York Times
    https://www.nytimes.com/2018/10/27/technology/driverless-cars-congestion.html

    Mr. Calthorpe is a Berkeley-based urban planner who is one of the creators of New Urbanism, which promotes mixed-use, walkable neighborhoods. His designs emphasize the proximity of housing, shopping and public space.

    He is not opposed to autonomous vehicles. Mr. Calthorpe’s quarrel is with the idea that the widespread adoption of personally owned self-driving cars will solve transportation problems. In fact, he worries it will lead to more urban congestion and suburban sprawl.

    “One thing is certain: Zero- or single-occupant vehicles,” even ones that can drive themselves, “are a bad thing,” he and the transportation planner Jerry Walters wrote in an article last year in Urban Land, an urban planning journal. “They cause congestion, eat up energy, exacerbate sprawl and emit more carbon per passenger-mile.”

    “The key distinction is the number of people per vehicle,” said Mr. Walters, a principal at Fehr & Peers, a transportation consultancy in Walnut Creek. “Without pretty radically increasing the number of people per vehicle, autonomous systems will increase total miles traveled.”

    He used his software to show that by changing just commercial zoning to permit higher density along El Camino Real — the 45-mile boulevard that stretches through the heart of Silicon Valley from San Francisco to San Jose — it would be possible add more than a quarter-million housing units.

    The Valley’s housing crisis can be explained in data that shows that since 2010, the region has added 11 jobs for every new home built; the median home price has reached $934,000; and rents have gone up 60 percent since 2012. One of the consequences of the growing imbalance between housing and jobs is the increasing traffic and congestion, according to an Urban Footprint report.

    To avoid congestion, the plan requires efficient mass transit. Mr. Calthorpe has proposed an alternative — autonomous rapid transit, or ART — using fleets of self-driving vans in reserved lanes on main arteries like El Camino Real. Those lanes would allow the vehicles to travel faster and require a lower level of autonomous technology. And the vans could travel separately or be connected together.

    Mr. Calthorpe’s plan is an evolution of the concept of “transit-oriented development” he pioneered while teaching at the University of California, Berkeley, in the late 1980s. It focuses on designing urban communities that encourage people to live near transit services and decrease their dependence on driving.

    “You have to redesign the street itself,” he said. “You need to add autonomous transit, and you need to get rid of parallel parking and put in bikeways and better sidewalks.”

    #Mobilité #Automobile #Communs_urbains


  • David Blight on Frederick Douglass: ’I call him beautifully human’ | Books | The Guardian

    https://www.theguardian.com/books/2018/oct/28/david-blight-on-frederick-douglass-i-call-him-beautifully-human

    Sun 28 Oct 2018 05.00 GMT

    David Blight arrives in New York pulling his carry-on luggage, en route from Washington, soon to fly onwards to San Francisco. Such is the interest in his new biography of Frederick Douglass, a book 10 years in the writing and a whole career in the making, he will be on the road till December.

    He takes off his lovingly battered Michigan State cap, picks up a coffee and sits down for another conversation.

    “I’m lucky there’s so much interest,” he says, “and I’m lucky to have a publisher that really cares to send me around. I’ve never done a book tour like this.”


  • Procès du glyphosate. L’appel de Monsanto rejeté, son amende considérablement réduite
    Ouest-France avec AFP et Reuters - Modifié le 23/10/2018 à 05h17
    https://www.ouest-france.fr/environnement/glyphosate/proces-du-glyphosate-la-justice-americaine-rejette-l-appel-de-monsanto-

    Un mois après avoir fait appel de sa condamnation à verser 289 millions de dollars, soit 247 millions d’euros, à un jardinier atteint d’un cancer après avoir utilisé du Roundup, Monsanto a été débouté par la Cour supérieure de Californie, lundi. Le juge a cependant ordonné une baisse drastique des dommages et intérêts.

    La Cour supérieure de Californie de San Francisco a rejeté lundi l’appel de Monsanto, filière de Bayer, qui demandait un nouveau procès ou l’annulation du verdict qui l’avait condamné à verser 289 millions de dollars (247 millions d’euros) à un jardinier atteint d’un cancer après avoir utilisé du Roundup, un de ses herbicides à base de glyphosate.

    Le juge a cependant ordonné la réduction des dommages et intérêts. L’amende initiale de 289 millions de dollars englobait 39 millions de dollars au titre du préjudice moral et financier infligé au plaignant et 250 millions au titre des dommages destinés à punir la firme, selon les termes juridiques américains.

    C’est cette somme de 250 millions de dollars que la juge a estimé excessive, dans une décision écrite rendue publique lundi. Se fondant notamment sur la jurisprudence, elle a estimé que compte tenu de l’importance de la compensation de 39 millions de dollars octroyée à M. Johnson au titre de ses préjudices moraux et économiques, il convenait d’infliger au maximum la même somme au titre de dommages punitifs à Monsanto. Ce qui porte désormais la somme totale à 78 millions de dollars.

    La plainte de Dewayne Johnson, déposée en 2016, a fait l’objet d’un procès rapide en raison de la gravité de son lymphome non hodgkinien, un cancer du système lymphatique causé selon lui par des années d’exposition au Roundup et au Ranger Pro, un autre herbicide de Monsanto.

    #Monsanto #Dewayne_Johnson


  • Making a Virtual Workforce
    https://hackernoon.com/making-a-virtual-workforce-3c0a6e8e3f99?source=rss----3a8144eabfe3---4

    Growth of the #gaming frontier can’t be stunted. It is exploding with growth and potential. High-level Runescape profiles are sold to the highest bidder every day as greater value is placed on virtual success. The control of a virtual gaming identity is altering the way we work and place emotion. The idea of teamwork and collaboration no longer falls within the confines of a physical building in San Francisco. A virtual world is a fresh world. The simple taste of vastness gives birth to the idea of possibility. No limitation seems unconquerable in a virtual environment. What was once an escape is now an extension of our being, sometimes even a borderline replacement. Virtual existences are constantly generated, but lack the open and robust virtual economies that would allow them to (...)

    #make-a-virtual-workforce #cryptocurrency #virtual-workforce #graphic-design


  • American journeys

    Sixty years ago, John F. Kennedy presented his vision of an America proud to be a ‘nation of immigrants’. His campaign helped shape the 1965 Immigration and Nationality Act, opening America’s doors to the world. But in 2018, in the age of a very different President, immigration is presented as a problem, a threat and an imposition upon American generosity. Immigration policy is focused on exclusion and separation – the building of walls, issuing of travel bans, separating of children from their parents.

    I’ve studied immigration and refugee issues for over a decade. Then, in 2014, I became an American immigrant myself. As debates on immigration in the US became increasingly fraught, I found myself wanting to understand better how immigration has shaped – and is continuing to shape – American identity. So, in March 2018, I left San Francisco and spent the next two months driving cross-country to New York City. Along the way, I spoke to dozens of people of every political persuasion and background, listening to their thoughts about immigration and what it means to be an American citizen today.

    https://www.odi.org/american-journeys
    #voyage #USA #Etats-Unis #migrations #nation_of_immigrants #identité #représentations
    ping @reka