on #stacktivism – my #ILIW13 talk

1 minute

:: we cannot have a conversation about something whilst it remains unseen ::

‘The stack’The chain of interconnected activities and technologies of current and historical significance that spread far beyond the individual.

Stacktivism Logo

I think there are many people beginning to have/shape a conversation around the stack: From Jo Guldi the author of Roads to Power: Britain Invents the Infrastructure State , Timo Arnall in his No to NoUI piece, Benjamin Bratton and his geopolitics of the cloud and theoretical languge of β€˜the stack’, artist/Critical Engineer Julian Oliver (Eyeo2012 talk is very good) & course my good friend Vinay Gupta.

> who owns the means of not dying?

> who controls the stack?

> is infrastructure neutral?

> what are the dilemmas of radical texts on Amazon in relation to capitalist realism while sat under a Tumblr image hosted on Amazon ?

On Sunday I gave a talk at β€˜Immaterial Labour Isn’t Working: Digital Culture, Digital Work, Digital Insurrection’ hosted by Autoitaliasoutheast – the panel session was on New Luddism.

I used my time to introduce the concept of #stacktivism a term that i think allows us to form & give shape to the conversation around infrastructure & our relationship we have to it. I do not seek to define it, merely give shape to an idea.

The concept is early days & in its infancy: I hope my talk embedded below is a useful primer/introduction to this enquiry.

Join in the conversation here :: Stacktivism.com

stacktivism.tumblr.com + @stacktivism )

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  1. AG avatar

    So how do you define “the stack”? When I use the term, I use it to mean an ensemble of discrete technologies, operating at different levels of abstraction, vertically integrated to produce one (generally, nominally seamless) user experience β€” but I’m always acutely aware that other people will have different things in mind. I’m curious what your take is.

    1. reallifelieselsewhere avatar

      Yes. I would agree, that is a great description! As with my short description at the top of the post, i think its important to mention the historical significance. The biggest thing i take from your description as the stack being ‘vertically integrated’ i was struggling for those words during my talk.

      On of the things i like about ‘the stack’ as a slightly more abstract term, is that one can refer to ‘everything’ between point A -> point B as ‘the stack’ and then begin to critically tease out specifics.

      Thanks for the comment!

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