Cops and garbage bins must go

Would society work without cops?

I was waiting at the bus stop and a van full of chunky cops pulled up with what looked like light combat gear on. I thought about how in North Sydney they have removed all the garbage bins and the streets remain clean. What would happen if we removed all the police, would the crime rate increase?

By removing the garbage bins the council has managed to save money, but they have shifted the responsibility from them to us, the public. It’s a leap of faith on their part, or perhaps recognising that its citizens can be trusted. Why not with the police force? If the police force were removed from a city, what would happen? How much does society really rely on the police to maintain order?

I think the cops server two purposes and only one is law enforcement, the other is maintaining the inequality within society. We saw in the famous LA riots how looting and pillaging went on as soon as there was a perceived lack of law enforcement. This I believe is the society coming to equilibrium, or the ‘redistribution of wealth’. What would have happened if it had been permitted to carry on? Once all the shops were looted then what?

Even the looters would have to come to some sort of truce in order to maintain food and shelter, utility services and so on. One thing that could not happen is that people could not continue to ignore each other’s poverty or wealth. Once the responsibility his shifted to the everyone then everyone would have to become aware of this new responsibility. Groups would have to form for protection and to maintain existence.

As a side note I just went to Glasgow and came back to find my Laptop had been stolen. The police came around and could do nothing nor did they get my hopes up about anything happening. Would this have occurred if everyone were a cop?

Animation time

Ideas for animations I’m thinking about.

Thanks to Holly I’m thinking about animation again. Two ideas that I recently just had:

  • Set in Hackney (might take pictures of the various ugly buildings on the high street). Being confronted my beggars a lot, Louisa asking if it would be OK to offer them cloths (as Murry left a large bag of cloths when he returned to Oz). She thought she might get the large bag, dump it on the poor fellow and run. I’d like to play with this idea.
  • I forgot what the other one was…

P2P will save us all

The Freenet Project is a P2P network that will save democracy (and bandwidth).

The Freenet Project is a P2P network that operates like the internet but encrypts all transmissions and allows for anonymity, so allows for information freedom in places like China where there is heavy censorship.

Apart from its democratic value, I have often thought that all web protocols like HTTP should be P2P as its a more efficient way to use bandwidth. If web browsers all became P2P client and simply shared their cache I think there would be massive bandwidth savings.

Just a thought.

Transparency Interface

Simple interaction makes the transparent feature useful.

Winamp has come along way, but since it was bought out by AOL it hasn’t really been innovating much. I got the latest version and they have this feature that lets it become transparent (which it has done for awhile) but what they have added to this is that it becomes fully opaque when you mouse over it and fades to transparent again when you move your mouse away.

This simple interaction makes the transparent feature useful (which it was really before so didn’t use it much) but is also an interesting idea for an interface design. You could have more than one thing/window transparent and layered on top of each other. As the document was further towards the back of the pile (i.e. say a group of journal entries stacked by date) they could be more/less transparent (need to experiment with opacity). Possibly flip/zoom though the layers with the mouse wheel and on the mouse over increase the opacity to full (or readable level?).

Buying change

If protesting and lobbing the government won’t work, then perhaps its time to buy change.

If protesting and lobbing the government won’t work, then perhaps its time to buy change.

I was just listen to 2SER and the presenter mentioned that the Tasmania ‘old-growth regnans forests’ are being logged at something like 40 football fields a day. Mainly for wood chip it would seem. Richard Flanagan seems to indicate that “the logging industry’s astonishing exemption from the Freedom of Information Act…”. Seems that all political avenues have been taken. Protesting doesn’t seem to slow the loggers down much ether.

The current conservative government isn’t going to do much to change the situation as they don’t care about the environment. Perhaps a change of tact is required. An organization could be set-up to acquire logging companies and enforce more environmentally sound practices. Logging can be done in a manor that is profitable and minimises environmental impact.

Funds could be acquired via the usual means of venture capital encouraging people not to donate money but invest. Perhaps capital could be borrowed and returned with a minimum return before the loan is considered repaid. The companies could then be donated to Green Peace or profits used to buy other environmental management investments.

Zine distribution website

Website idea: Zine distribution. Organise mailing zines to people.

Wouldn’t it be good to have a website that lists zines as they come out and give you some way of getting a copy if your not in their city? Maybe just a postal address to write to get a copy or the site could charge postage and organise and send it. You’d have to be a real zine nut to do that however. If it become popular you could charge a $1 per post. Maybe get the ‘work-for-the-dole’ people to do it for you? You could offer subscriptions to certain zines and post em automatically.

Like the equivalent of a small record company but for zines. Just a random thought…

Sunbirds and calendars

Mozilla Sunbird allows for colaborative scheduling and PHP needs to support it!

There has been a recient review of Mozilla Sunbird which is just a simple calendar and To Do list program from the Mozilla people, bit like the appointment part of Outlook. I like it because its nice and simple and uses open standards.

With it you can have multiple calendars (which Outlook doesn’t do) so you can keep your work life and social separate if you like, or not: its a check box away. You can also import and/or share your calendar using WebDAV which basically lets you write to files on a web server over http. So you can share a calendar online with one or more people. So if you have a group of friends who do stuff together, or just people working on a project together, you can all see what the up and coming events are.

The idea

RSS is all fine and dandy but its designed to show you events that have already happened. What I’d really like is to be able to subscribe to a particular venue, artist, band, club, circle of friends, radio station etc. Basically anything with a schedule/calendar and have it appear in my local calendar. Sunbird seems to allow this. The standard it stores its calendar information in is called iCal. I had a quick sniff around and there is no a PEAR or general PHP support for this format. Be nice if there was an XML version of it (Sunbird has an option in the export but its not implemented it would seem)

This is a not to self: Write PHP iCal object