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tv   In Depth In Depth with Cory Doctorow  CSPAN  December 25, 2018 11:00pm-2:01am EST

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the question about whether or not technology i the technologyo enable us to be free.
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>> host: is it hard to translate those into science fiction format? >> guest: the next question format?guest co. the next question everyone asks is how can you write fiction in this era where do you worry that you will be left behind by the margin of history and i kind of feel like if you don't hav have seven ideas for novels each day you are not really trying. >> host: you said all writers to extrapolate the future is to comment on the now. can you expand on that? >> guest: it reaches into the world and does this diagnostic thing. if you go to the doctor with a sore throat they will swap your throat and then tell you what's going on with your body but she hasn't been able to do that because she made this incredibly unfaithful replica of your body
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and science-fiction writers build a kind of toy world where that technology is a way of surfacing the emotional properties of it before 1948 we didn't have a way to talk about it and george orwell gives an incredibly useful narrative for talking about the emotional impact of living under the conditions of mass surveillance and now we have this word orwellian and then we will find all the bad people and you can explain why that's creepy without the distractions you can talk about this concrete thing and at worst the science fiction
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writers think they are doing this future casting where they've looked at the variables and they've had these timelines of the future and like any fortuneteller the predictions were so metaphorical you could interpret them any way you wanted but when he talks about what the fortunetellers would have happened to them, he turned their heads around 180 degrees and then he put them in both pcs and have them wade through while being flogged relentlessly by demons and i think he kind of gave them an easy break because the message of the fortuneteller is that the future is coming no matter what you do and that is the counsel of despair if the future is coming no matter what you do, then why are we even hear and i like to think it happens because of what we do and one of the things they can do to intervene in the future
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just how much more interesting. >> hointeresting. >> how do you use your characters than what role do they play for you? >> guest: often times the stuff that i'm thinking about in the policy are very abstract ideas, but they have these super concrete consequences and by writing stories that pitted on these ideas of the general-purpose computing that you can take these things like the one figured out the abstract mathematics and make them into these emotional stories where the consequences become undeniable. >> host: how many books have you written? >> guest: i don't know the numbers, but it's in the 20s. only because there are some essay collections and there's a picture book for kids and some other things. when you write about the things
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like that, do you find yourself revisiting the concept of characters and in the books that you put out? >> guest: anyone try to communicate has this kind of irreducible thing in their head and they want to put it into your head and they try to reproduce it through some medium so i write an essay or give a talk and i try to make it happen and then i get feedback what people heard when i set i said d from that feedback i get a more refined idea of how i might put it into other people's heads and i try again. you can see they circle the idea through their whole career may be like a gu goner walking mortr fire to the target you take a shot and give something back or change your elevation, so yes in some ways it is all the same
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story like this is how i see the world what worries me and what i had hoped for to be reduced into something that will transmit more perfectly to you. >> host: one of your novels grew out of the theory that you were constructing at the time. >> guest: what does happen is everything that crosses seems like it is significant and part of something bigger. i try to write for the public consumption. writing notes for someone i've never met, that creates both a searchable database and decades of blogging but also it creates these ideas like a supersaturated solutions and i
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think some people's method is they have a research. >> host: tell us about those ideas that spark the book. >> guest: it is an optimistic disaster novel in the time of economic and environmental crisis where they pull together to help each other and the enemy is and as in many crisis novels the bad people who've been waiting for the breakdown of law and order, the enemies are the people who are convinced that the poor people are coming that are preemptively policing them to kind of keep them from coming into and down their walls
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compounding. a wonderful historian with research of disasters and how people behaved in them. it's how in each time you have people who are convinced there must be a total breakdown in order and then when you read the account published by people on the ground what you find is this incredible moment when the refrigerator background stops this ringing silence people realized they had more in common than they had separating them and solidarity became the order of the day in the badlands of
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the territory through use software and mechanisms to build a fully automated resorts that kind of babysit themselves where anyone can do what they want and some hero comes along and said that as my garbage you are using that's fine there's plenty more where that came from and they just walk away. >> host: briefly introduce the characters. >> guest: there's a lot that the main are a group of three young people walking away from what is called default society.
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one of his members were members -- parents were members of the anonymous party that adopts a policy like using your real name into the become so infuriated they give him the top 20 names from the consensus so he can't fit in the database. his best friend his name is seth and they walk away and take up new names and become a part of this collective and meet a host of characters. one is a brazilian national in this movement and struggles. there is a mathematician to build practical immortality by
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allowing people to simulate the consciousness and computers in real life as if she sticks around and does this for the rich she will be complicit in helping to release this knowledge as open source. they realize they are not just going to be a distraction for the rest of eternity that is when the hellfire missiles come out and there's the state that is a looming surveillance presence that runs on the rails and is composed of people doing the best they can rubén doing good. she's a very charming fellow but it is very good at getting himself.
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they are moving away from the walkaway world saying why shouldn't wof saying whyshouldng us and they assume of course they will be counted in the best among them. >> host: i've been a walkaway that is what it is now walking and acknowledging problems to be solved not citizens. can you expand on that? people talk about this idea of where the classical economics state if you have a certain number of people unemployed it suppresses the wages a little bit and we count job seekers not overall numbers of unemployed people you don't assume we are going to do something redistributed for people that afford to make things the robots
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are building or by the things the robots are building then you have so many people hanging around and it's more than you need it becomes a source of instability. so they are problems to be solved. how do we buy these people off or neutralize them so that we don't have to get rid of them? where is the balance point? we've had an equilibrium between the guard labor and soldiers and jail workers and so on between the guard labor and the redistribution at a certain point if wealth accumulates into a small number of the amount of money exceeds the amount they could spend just building hospitals and roads one of the
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things they've done is make it so much cheaper to separate the sheep from the goats and it seems to have moved the equilibrium so far along we have all these people that feel like they don't have a stake in society. people kept talking about how natural it feels in the stories. the system starts to break down, people overrun the civic infrastructure and set fire to everything. and it struck me when you see that in that prison riot movies, why would a prisoner burned down the prison, because the prison
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access in an adversarial relationship to them. it's where they sleep and eat because that is how they are controlled and they have no stake in the prison. the fact that we can totally understand the minute the lights go out, so many of our neighbors are going to want to burn down a citthe city that they are livi in. for delivering all of the essentials that go into it but instead as a kind of cage and then it makes perfect sense when they turn their back, you burn it all down. >> host: when it comes to the conflict you described the father to ask th kidnapped the s
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it is what are you trying to say on that exchange and the constant interference? >> guest: they have a theory that says for 500 years things were pretty static where one family would have a lot of wealth and to maintain that the eldest son inherited and all the other children were to be to the clergy or become minor nobility or married off to someone else's fun and it expanded in the age in the moment of colonization, you have so much money flowing in.
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let's take those others in their colonial holdings. the father in this book sees them as one of the two offspring who's going to be half of his dynasty into this other way of living and he started to think of himself as the maintainer of the fortune and in his mind he's doing so to defend the system to keep his line from being deprecated.
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if things are really do equal than these things are unfair. why shouldn't he be stripped of all of that wealth, so people that are very powerful, it's the kind of genetic fallacy that doesn't bear even the slightest scrutiny and once you convince yourself you have good blood you start to worry about your blood being diluted and making sure your line is kept pure and you start to think of herself as a thorough breeder of kings on m men. >> host: is there a specific person you had in mind?
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>> guest: >> guest: i have a background in silicon valley. i've met enough that he's kind of the amalgam of the lot of them. >> guest: >> host: was at a specific set of instances that struck you to write the book were with a cern specific moment in time or a series of things? >> guest: because my method is on the one hand i am accumulating the notes for the book i don't know. there is a set amount every day working on the novel because of how busy i don't i wrote a page a day and when i wrote abou that was four pages a day so the upside of writing a few pages a day gives you enough time between sessions to accumulate a lot of the incidental detail that flows into the work and
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richness. all of the details of the book are in there and all the stuff that happened in the news. if you are not having these novel ideas in 2018, you are hardly paying attention and so yes. >> host: those who decide to walkaway talk about the kind of economy they live in but then how does that function for those that walk away from it all and how they live and buy things and engage in trade where do you base that in the real world? >> guest: is easier to imagine and we have a hard time talking about gifts. we end up talking about trade in this quid pro quo.
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it's thought of like maybe we make jokes about it but you don't do it so that your kids will take care of you. it's not like they are an investment bank and if you put enough birthday parties and out of the help with your mobility problems it's not a transsexua t operations don't have and they are trying to offer faith that in more and more of the relations and since they figured out a kind of alchemy purchase using machines to find reusable
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material out of the spoiled garbage that has been dumped by your ancestors we have a fossil economy right now it is based on the concentrated corpses of those that have harvested some life for millions of years early in the planet's history. it is all the material out of the unfair labor relations we are able to accumulate and couldn't figure out how to get rid of and they figured out how to get useful work out of that using machines and the machines themselves can replicate themselves. they don't need to barter anymore. people really want to be transactional. there's this idea i don't know if you've turned up at an event and had the host gives you
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something and you realize you haven't brought a bottle of wine to give back to them that there is a sense that maybe you are on the wrong side of the social niceties. that comes from lots of places. they run in the gift economy and bring trinkets are something to give to other people and when you meet someone come it's like i have this gift economy stuff can i give it to you and then immediately i've got something for you to, and it's hard to get away from when you don't feel the need to reciprocate. there is a miraculous joy that comes out of it. >> host: for this edition of
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in depth, you are welcome to do so (202)748-8200, for those in easterineastern and central time 202-74-8801. for those in the mountainous pacific time zone, you can post on the facebook page and also on twitter f. back booktv. i think you've reflected this to you take issue with capitalism at all? >> guest: the markets are a useful tool but a poor moral arbitearbiter that the fact then sometimes allocate a scarce resource doesn't mean automatically but they do this right north of the people that drive into the markets are better people.
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the scarcity but to tell you on non- scarcity with uselessness so if you work at a big tech company today, you get to all kinds of things janitors don't get to. when your boss decides who's going to take money from the pentagon to supply tools for drones you can say no and your boss has to listen to you because 10% of their engineering staff said they would quit if they didn't and the janitors don't get to do that. if they don't show up for work they die of wisteria. the fact that they don't have a lot of bargaining power so they can't exert that power against
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an employer doesn't mean they are not important and that's the thing that markets are failing as more and more of the labor becomes automated and so many more of us are interchangeable because of the amount has gone way down. it's deprived so many of us who work on the negotiating leverage and other people's decisions without getting a say in them and markets have been a failure. >> host: when it comes to those that walk away with is the governing structure like and what does it say abou that say w people manage themselves? >> guest: they have a bunch of different tools to manage themselves. reputation economies i wrote about for the first novel and about the reputation economoftht
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ambiguous utopia that people read as an unambiguous utopia i spent 15 years with people coming up to me saying i want to live in a world just like it here's my idea for how to make it happen and if they reject that and go for other ideas, they have this thing like the love that dares not speak its name or the use zero knowledge tools to post opinions that can't be traced back to then order you know i really think the thing we've all been doing and profess to love are there other people that feel this way and if they voice their view then all of their identities are unmasked at once but until that happens no one has to go on record taking this on the popular view so they try to pass around the problems that we have
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defined a path through, and you know, cryptography is going back to writing this interesting thing that we can write about for the next ten years, 20 or 30 years without scratching the surface so genuinely you can take these distraction rectangles we carry in our pockets and without even noticing it when you take a picture or send a message, if all of the atoms in the universe were computers and all they did was try to guess we would run out of universe before we run out of the peace and it lets us do these remarkable things that we've never been able to do before like new kinds of secret voting and collective action for good and for bad.
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using those decision-making tools was an awful lot of fun. >> host: we will discuss as we spend time together on this version of in depth we have calls lined up. the first is from ron and nicole bill new york i have appreciated the discussion and i watch a lot of booktv. i am an older guy who was in a conversation over the weekend with some about big claim to be -- about bit coin. i wonder if you have any ideas regarding how bit coin would be integrated into a gift economy.
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economy. >> it's a running joke among people that 50% of all conversations are nonconsensual because it's one of those things people will talk about whether you want to or not and i . >> so that tends to create that deflationary hoarding effect it also you don't have that same value but three weeks later that house that you could have bought is now
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where the pizza. there is real problems with that but to be geographically secured public ledger is an incredibly useful idea so to have this spending problem like digital coin you don't erase it from your wallet you spend it again this is all visible to everyone in the world all the time. so that coin uses proof of work from cryptographers with that data mining is the energy consumption of one american family's assumption for obvious reasons doesn't feel very sustainable. but there are way less energy intensive ways to do this and
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as a public ledger every browser in the world is currently using called certificate transparency. when you go to a website you have a lock that tells you a secure connection it does that because there are about 4000 entities that are trusted to issue cryptographic certificates and anyone can issue certificate for anyone like the hong kong post office can issue a certificate to say this is a real connection to google then chinese government can have a fake google website that is indistinguishable from the real google these authorities are sloppy and a dirty and insecure so they are broken into. so with certificate transparency every time the browser it sends the details to the public ledger's and then we can see if those
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authorities are dirty and get rid of them so we started to purge the dirty ones so now when a government goes and says we need you to help forge a connection that comes from google or microsoft or apple , we can do that but one hour later we will be found out and then we will want - - or business will be killed. >> so with those public ledgers are irrefutable and irreversible records of what we do might be useful to prolong trust and while proof of work may not be the way that we do that but maybe we use other public ledger technologies to do that.
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>> how does that work with the economy quick. >> by details that are never revealed that trick that others get to do but with the magic kingdom when you encounter anything in the world you can find out how all the people you trust feel about it. so i can find out about the mutual acquaintances and also how the people that you dislike. and in a world without scarcity it is useful. but those that take over disney world just by walking into declare themselves to be the new imagining ears ad hoc. and if enough people arrive
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when they tell them to instead of who are you then they get to be in charge of the ride. it is a lot of fun to write. one of the thing that it supposes is that reputation economics can be winner take all so people tend to interpret the things you do as though you do them better so when i do something morally questionable if you already like me and think of me as a paragon you will look to find that moral that that person needed killing. so what that does is have a return to wealth. >> just like modern day.
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>> that terrible photo that person that i love on insta graham just took it is ironically terrible. not actually terrible. teeseven the next call comes from california. >>caller. thank you for taking my call and c-span for doing these shows. who was your influence in writing specifically like science fiction? people that you looked up to or did you just get into it despite of people quick. >> yes i would say it's difficult to pin down a few favorites what is your favorite book people that only read one book get into trouble whether it is something by ayn rand. i have been lucky enough to be employed by hundreds if not
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thousands of writers to play a role in my development were in toronto where i grew up it has wonderful city as an american writer and editor who was married to another one and decided she want to bring her kids up in america so she donated it was the largest collection in the world and you could just go down to what was called the spaced out library and critique your manuscripts and put human groups with other important.
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the biggest science fiction bookstore in the world i walked into there and there is a lady behind the counter who asked me what i read and liked and brought me back to the youth section 80 had it for a dollar i came back the next week that i was bringing in manuscripts. . >> and then to have mentors as a child and those who influenced me and to give me this watch and so many others. >>. >> thank you for taking my call would you be familiar
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with the anarchist you are speaking previously about those interactions and transactional and how that could be problematic i saw a lot of parallels between what she was saying so are you familiar with any of his works like a debt the first 5000 years or have you ever flirted with any ideas whether incorporating that into your work? thank you for taking my call. >> yes. i certainly am an admirer and one that is hugely influential
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just like jill walsh who is a canadian writer and so many science-fiction conversations and i would offer read it and completely taken aback a magisterial history of the first 5000 years. and when david came through los angeles where i lived i was here - - his interlocutor on stage the first time we met even though we corresponded for years. and then they make their ways into my books for lots of different ways. >> so as far as the anarchist park can you describe that philosophy quick. >> those are two definitely different questions my book
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starts with socialism and anarchism libertarianism that with a lot of different ideas i am not a marxist i'm also not an anarchist but i don't know what i am. i think i am more comfortable with the idea of markets as a useful tool i think i'm more comfortable than most anarchist are but i could have a useful dinner conversation with people of either a point of view i think. but i have yet to sit down and pin myself down on where i sit there is a writer that is really influential was british
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canadian academic and science writers on the cover of nature or science but he says he's not a marxist who has written some stirring critiques of growth as the weight of the future that in the future we will wear small leather aprons and that you have to kill people the future is high tech and every peasant looks like lord so he has been high tech
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highly efficient futures where we take away the economic and social context regarding billionaires and put into democratic hands he has a book called the public the people of more - - walmart where walmart it surfaced itself is not a market it is a command economy so it is a largest employer in the world and the transactions are often market-based when market takes a big order for toothpaste and actually reaches and adds more time on the line and schedules more workers anything else creates a weird swing so the
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idea is 100 years ago we had this argument if the command economy would be as big as a country but internally it is bigger than the entire economy of the soviet union. so we can but should we other than put under shareholder control? . >> someone amazon hits the 1 trillion-dollar mark what goes through your mind quick. >> how much blood is in my usbs cable because they keep prices low on the customer facing side but on the worker facing side but on the other hand, the fact they are producing all the surplus tells me you could readers on - - reduce the share on management side and have a
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super efficient system to produce goods and allocate them one of the problems that has yet to come to grips with that we tell people we don't really like to order online and have it turn up the next day but i don't like that economic system but i like that part only some of us clean toilets but all of us use them but if we can make a self-cleaning toilet then there is an argument for it better wealth apportionment but not for ending self-cleaning toilets there is no virtue anybody has to clean a toilet ever good afternoon go ahead.
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>>caller: i will be brief and we will continue this discussion on twitter in that forum but first and foremost, without emerging executive producer but some of the things i have thought about with this discussion as i followed you on twitter is how this agenda by the wealth owners has been effective in as much the idea of capitalism and democracy equal. and obviously to the detriment of the citizenry. secondly, money is scarce
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which is fundamental to their agenda with the idea so people have over the course of time to sustain itself socially. the third thing i want to talk about is the notion using block chain as a backdrop and what are your thoughts on that? . >> thank you for all of the kind comments. let's talk about voting briefly it is an issue i've been involved with for more than 15 years working with intellect - - a nonprofit a whole investor perspective and the questions on privacy and digital democracy. we got involved with voting after bush v gore and the effort to standardize digital
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voting so i'm very skeptical of electronic voting. pen and paper is our best bet not a terrible idea but if we must have at least let us have an audit trail in that regard block chain maybe is a solution but i know if that's the right solution if we can do auditing very cheaply all we need to do is put a paper tape and then voters verify the vote they put an x next to senator dingell barry and then they press the button and then we should randomly audit those machines one or two or
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3 percent to see if the account matches the paper tape there is a lot of other stuff we can make them more secure with the digital copyright act and to investigate the voting machine and see how the software works and looking at that voting machine and need to be like the line - - secretary of state which is ridiculous so the vendors decides who gets to criticize their product is bonkers. and then downloadable by anyone to have a real discussion. before we have science we had a thing that looked like
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science that was out to me that they observe a causal related one - - relationship they run the experiment and then publish their results but those who want to ruin their career can pick holes but if you can withstand that than your ideas are probably pretty good but with an alchemist and 500 years then they discovered you should not drink mercury when they publish those outcomes alchemy did create a miracle of superstition into the noble goal of science through peer review so the idea to have something as vital and subject to public scrutiny including scrutiny
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that think that they want to bankrupt them that idea is outrageous i would love to see fully auditable voting machines there are democracies like the united kingdom where we use pen and paper on a hard to count a ballot to allow us to get the results a couple hours earlier. >> as far as oversight is at the state or national level quick. >> i think national standards is important and a national recourse is important ultimately it does have to be a local level because they are installed and monitored but one of the things we know is a
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trail of voting machines themselves is a lot of things they are supposed to do don't get done so for example, they are supposed to be under guard from the time the final software installation is put until they are fielded for public use we find out they are left in the school gym for three days. that is really terrible. that does have to be monitored at the local level but the standards should be higher than they are now. >> talk about ideas for movies. >> there is an option but none of it has been made into a movie sometimes you have good adaptations often times you
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don't and there are reasons for that the most important is the way that fiction works is that it pretends to know what another person is. so to have the introspective element the way it pulls off the aesthetic effect making you feel like you are inside another person. and make you privy to the thought unless you resort to cheap tricks that has to be inferred to the actions of the characters so i'm guessing in
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that regard there is an important mismatch that i think a lot of writers fail to bridge. >> word you want some sort of control? . >> sure. i don't think anyone that has never written a film knows the best way to make a film but my books are not metaphors but this is the extent of my secret sauce that computers and most fiction are just metaphors even today you can see a computer it's one character at a time if i had that computer i would throw it out the window that is objectively terrible computer but that reflects a certain
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lack of confidence if writers and directors and cinematographers because once you delve into those theoretical limits and capabilities, they are superduper interesting. you might decide the way to make the story interesting is to ignore those capabilities but we have a new generation like mister robot that has taken us to new places with the genuine capabilities of computers and really fantastic stories and that's the one thing i would want to say let's make these true to form
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teeseven go ahead. >>caller: hello. i'm going to the world science convention this month. i have an autographed copy of your book and can you make a comment about locus magazine. >> sure. it is a trade rag of the science-fiction world and has been around about 50 years started by charles brown that a lot of people call charlie brown as a way the publisher would have wanted to go he went to science convention and
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died on the plane on the way home and is sorely missed. but i have been a columnist for more than a decade and it remains the paper record for our field that is more diverse and much more interesting. they have done an admirable job of tracking that. >> michelle from pennsylvania. >>caller: high. high. high. related the way you may have a random pool but i am not directly related to him and anyway he is russian and the way that came about they were having trouble because of the
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sun or to know so they just gave people last names and son of a doctor or son of a learned man or somebody who could tie his own shoe his family is from the same part so we are probably related enough if our kids were married we would have to do a genetic screening but not enough to worry about that. >> >>caller: yes. i assume you are familiar with the writings of garrett jensen? . >> no. >> the poet laureate of the
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environmentalism that lives in california where they trace their civilization and culture 13000 years and then pooping in the words and going back to the forest and he contends the only sustainable civilization is stone age but i am addicted to electricity so i wonder ever since reading his stuff if it is possible to live sustainably with electricity? . >> not having read his work i will not comment he sounds like a fabulous writer.
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that is beautiful country but that distinction between electricity and other forms of energy feels like distinction with the difference so when we take the nutrients of the fish which is a beautiful image what we really say is that those organisms in the sea with the funds radiant energy so basically we are pooping sunshine. and electricity is just another way to function gravity and other foundations in the solar system and to make that distinction that we know there was a form of
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bacteria that has pooped out so much oxygen that they died that is now the oxygen that we breathe. life is perfectly capable without the intervention that what the environment is good for and that it is necessary regardless of your energy sourc source. >> continuing our conversation with cory doctorow we will continue with our conversation so now a quick synopsis? . >> after a terrorist attack and a crackdown president of homeland security to hack the xbox is and they went to
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restore there bill of rights for their hometown. >> it is cory doctorow talking about little brother and how it was censored. we will be right back. >> i wrote a novel in 2008 about kids after a terrorist attack in san francisco find themselves interrogated by homeland security and then emerge from the multi- day interrogation it was a police state and everyone they know goes along with it because then you seek the daddy figures and they decide this isn't good enough so they take there xbox to get around surveillance they build an army and kick dhs out of san
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francisco these are 17 -year-olds. i wrote the book it was moderately well received and read in the wrong places that was taught in west part one - - west point and the nsa there is a school in pensacola with a have one book one school summer read program all the kids are given an optional extra credit assignment to read a book that is discussed schoolwide in the bottom of the library and came together to plan this and went to the normal channels and one week before school let out the principle decided to cancel the summer reading program rather than have his kids read the book which he had not read that he had read reviews of it and decided he may get into
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trouble with parents but his concern the fact that they teach it at west point seems like a weird misplaced concern so at the end they said you are not allowed to do this. we have a process to challenge books and it doesn't go like this and he said i'm the principle you will do what i say we have rule of law elements. so my publisher arrange to send them 200 copies over the summer given out for free on day number one so you could get it for free online so they downloaded the book so i would cryptographically sign it and send it back to them and then this company that does t-shirts and posters it has the entire text on it that is like a high resolution art
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with huge poster size and then i heard from all of the students i never do these extra credit assignments ever but i figured at the principle said no then i really want to know what is in it. [laughter] i was meant to record a video for them of how disappointing it was through the process but really what was difficult and disturbing is the english teacher faced disciplinary actions and could have been fired with a right to work state and the national coalition of censorship in the national coalition committee conference? work to help her to keep her job and she was exonerated and
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told the principal he was wrong. i did a videoconference with the students in the autumn but it was a school and a really poor district and the library and the reason they felt the readers would be excited and that was the group that was not in the conference so all the book got read and raise the profile there's something called the streisand effect like in california they take pictures of the coastline that includes barbra streisand's house which is on the coast and how much has eroded she objected to her roof being on the internet and went from 3 million to the billion views when you try to suppress something it makes a higher profile but the principal did
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manage the victory to confound this personal time project that they had worked on diligently and at great personal risk that they thought would engage the most vulnerable kids in their school and he succeeded keeping the book out of their hands. >> when we went to break you are talking about a terrorist act did you get that idea directly from 9/11? . >> definitely 9/11 changed everything. in part because the reaction was we went from a crisis that showed there were some weaknesses in the way we manage security and foreign
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policy and introduced a lot more weaknesses like doubling down on bad policy i have been working for a civil liberties group to be directly involved so that inspired little brother in 2005 mark klein came into our offices in san francisco with papers which my bosses made me build a secret room from the nsa they were intercepting all internet traffic without warrants and that we assisted the us government and that lawsuit
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was big news for a while but then a young senator named barack obama killed the bill that would made the phone companies responsible for retroactive immunity that pre- promise to bringing - - rain and the mass amount spent instead he double and triple down while in office and as i learned it doesn't matter your political persuasion the idea that tries to explain to people the right to have a life we were not scrutinized all the time as an increasingly urgent mission especially with mass surveillance
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immigrants, kids, prisoners if it works on them then to the blue-collar workers then public assistance or blue-collar workers and then everybody. into talk about that surveillance through the tools you are using to remain in contact with people to carry on your social and personal life so your choices were about your personal life it would be particularly compelling message. >> that is the message that the character in the book delivers talk about his role as he fights against the police state with homeland security. >> as a 17 -year-old computer
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kid who loves computers and watched the videos and how to and he realizes when he is city is turned into a police state that first after he is taken away and subjected to torture because they believe he may be complicit because he refuses to answer questions without a lawyer present a treat that as an admission of guilt they realize things are terrible but then also the city has been hit by a terrorist attack beget the stuff they are doing to prevent the next one is junk science and actual terrorist would not struggle to defeat but then if his terrorist wouldn't struggle to defeat it it wouldn't be hard for him either so he organizes a crusade against mass surveillance with the stuff
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they have been getting to get away from surveillance then to become digital surveillance then they just scale that up. >> writing about homeland security what's the relation to the book? . >> the mission of the nsa in fact, is to missions on one hand keeping us digitally safe with from state actors and social paths but on the other hand, they are charged with attacking other states and the domestic enemies by surveilling through networks and the missions are incompatible there was only
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one kind of computer only one internet that we use there are not operating systems that good guys use are bad guys use anything the nsa does to discover or preserve weaknesses creates and preserves digital weaknesses and tools that we rely on for the most intimate and urgent needs the internet is a single network through free speech access to education, employment the civic and political engagement and so on. they cannot do both of those things they have opted for that commission and you can see that when a hospital is used by the blackmailers to use ransomware to shut down and hospitals then ask for
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paltry sums they're asking about $300 because they were not super villains so what the nsa has done is preserve the state the equivalent of the junkie that smashes your window can steal the whole hospital that they have done that to make sure that the systems were not patched and in fact, that ransomware was leaked cyberweapon this is literally the work of the nsa there is probably no issue as urgent right now is making your digital system work not because they are more important of gender and justice but every one of those are using digital tools and
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the fact the nsa has proved itself so incapable to secure our system because it is so wedded to the idea to maintain security is an existential crisis in and of itself. >> quoting from the declaration of independence the idea of surveillance saying what you try to say through him. >> yes. i am not american. i'm canadian. moved here because i chose the bill of rights and declaration of independence as a set of principles and i recognize that will never be perfect. everybody fails to live up to their principles and america fails to live up to there's. but to be interested of self determination or limits on power and rule of law versus rule of man.
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so as we get older our idealism fades so to encounter that but there is a purity and in the sql two little brother he ends up in a more sophisticated set of situations he has to navigate. when i went to see the documentary i was surprised that they were in their hotel room in hong kong on the bedside table but he grabs a sql two little brother that was a moment that i still reflect on with enormous pride. >> and with that idea of data
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dumping what do you think about wikileaks? . >> i don't know if they had a role in wiki leaks that that is a complicated story with transparency for is a good one with an organization has had that pluralistic view with some accountability so the founders frailties and problems are better for worse and it has left that organization in tatters and i regret that because the work that they did in publishing is
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very important to shed a light what was done in our name and with our money allegedly for our benefit. but since then there has been a mixed bag record of dramatic missteps that has led me not feeling very good about the organization and there is a powerful lesson about the dictatorships and so many of those institutions but that remains benevolent but the problem is when the founders judgment turned sour and this idea the organization becomes incapable of defending itself much like wikipedia like a
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dictatorship like jimmy and then to understand that human frailties for the longest time was in charge of wikileaks. he sat down and said and that is a nonprofit for the board. and then it is on a much sounder footing than those that rely on a single charismatic figure. >> do you think wikipedia is a good source? i think you address that. >> i stand by the idea that
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the wikipedia official position is where your work should start. not end looking at wikipedia discussion is a really good way to get a sense of the lay of the land where the areas of contention are those that have different ideas and where they come from. it doesn't have a representation problem and with a culture that can be toxic but warts and all it could be set aside and with that imagination wikipedia is the extremely high quality
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resource with high domain. >> next color from oklahoma go ahead. >>caller. i was very impressed that west point is using your book that this high school in florida does not. so what is your hope the is the take away? . >> little brother there is a lot of technical information it is a stand alone as a work of art and that those urgent technical questions how computers work and if it's ever appropriate for the fbi to order apple but the hope they walk away about what is
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and isn't possible so that there are things they can never do. it's hard to understand what computers can do they can run everything we can do to symbolic one - - run symbolically and some would take millions of years but all computers are functional. and those that anger the government from your employer so this is like a technical challenge it would be great if we can make printers that only run printing programs and not all the programs.
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if we can make that computer airline - - that printer without malware. and then to say things if we can put a man on the moon surely we can run a computer that is only cryptography that the government can read with a warrant but we can. so that no matter how many men we put up there it is not that engineering challenge. and then that third little
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brother book called crypto wars this is why they hate technology to take away your power and privacy. so if you can figure out how to express your desire the computer can do what you desire. with cryptography and then that has never been. and those that don't have that privacy tool available. and that social network and that is not visible to the people reading it but that metadata about your data. who you talk to when you talk to them. plus the at risk with privacy
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violations and that underappreciated of what the computer is doing. and then to have this problem money won't be worth anything but how they incentivize their guards to unlock the food lockers this is sociopath stuff but imagine to go on a diet and knew you would have a cheap day on the 17 day diet. and you put them in a cupboard
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and lock them up so literally that same piece of software. and to live a better life and to re-create slavery. it all depends on the local control. >> from pennsylvania hello. >>caller: hello. good afternoon i am fascinated by this discussion i am calling to applaud you that the reason for my call is i have not read your latest book and that walkaway movement and that people could share that is the whole of human nature
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and practical balance where will the food come from? and also in the founding original colonies there was an experiment everybody kind of owns things but it turns out certain number of people work to make things happen whatever people want and then resentment grew but then the people that were making things there was not enough police authority from prevent them from seizing power because they were resentful from those who were not so in the issue top line - - utopian model how would that happen? i find it very impractical as a divergence from reality.
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>> i don't know if that's necessarily a vice but a diversion from reality that is the nature of entertainment they are not documentary. that said i am skeptical of any account of human nature with the different civilizations on a different scale lots of things that were stable or unstable with different conditions and we have authoritarian states to put themselves into collapse and then they use machines to provide surplus so the question of who does the labor is whisked away in this thought experiment but it is
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pretty clear you half to rely on the world as they managed to sustain themselves and there are people 21st century literally have never done a days work in her life she inherited the l'oreal fortune she still has all that money and there are people who have nothing they have food insecurity but yet she managed to continue to hold on so it is possible who have people that do all the work and then those that free ride on all the work and that could be over the long-term weather that is just is another question altogether but certainly it is proof there is one unitary human nature that is shaped by one thing or another. >> san francisco talks a lot
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about little brother. >> i have lived there twice. for me little brother in san francisco has a couple of different virtues having lived there i was familiar with the city because every book has to take place somewhere but . . . . the only day they wouldn't
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urinate all over it was the day that it was on fire near and yet as soon as it was hit by planes it became their city that they needed to stick up for and preferably by invading another country halfway around the world but wasn't involved with a plane and that seemed to me to be an underappreciated dynamic the fact that the city was so loathed by smovedby so many peoy became their spiritual center the attack on which left a scar on their heart that must be updated and checked any price and one city that is even more than new york is san francisco which is like new york except for a certain kind of right-wing hawk continuous war party is a
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place that would be the most welcomed event of their life. >> host: the next call is from san francisco. no offense. >> i've been here 30 years and recently i went to an event at the philippine consulate and it was an event dealing with an interesting historical event where the russians that were in china were world wa world war iy stood taking cover over china.
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it segues into my point that that was an event where the russian consulate had a chance to meet the russian consulate and then about three months later obama shut down the consulate because of the whole russian affair with the voting etc. and the intelligence report that came out was rather unsatisfying improve and since then it seems like they've built on this flawed intelligence report from january 6. they've gone from there and it's kind of got into me is the fact that the media portrays it like it is a fact that russia did all
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these things. >> host: what would you like the caller to address in all of this? >> guest: >> caller: this fact of russian interference is built on a house of cards and have never been searched by the fbi and people who are curious and ask questions seemed to be testified somehow putin lovers. >> guest: the stuff i seemed tseem tothe russian affiliated s seems pretty good, that attribution is hard. when i think about the russian narrative, i saw a family in st. petersburg, my grandmother was a grad and my dad was born
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to russian parents in the soviet union and russia when they were living at a displaced peoples camp. putin is a weak and sociopathic billionaire oligarchs who uses homophobia and religious fundamentalism and the politics of starvation to govern a police state. whether that attacked america in this election i'm inclined to believe it, but the fact is that our american equilibrium is so fragile that it could be nudged a few degrees in any direction and have these weird catastrophic outcomes.
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when you have a selection of literally anything that moves the needle even the smallest amount could be called a cause of the election because if it had been there then it might have gone the other way. and the fact that we cannot close his terrifying and demand work from us. we need a system where people get elected because they vote for them and not against their opponent. opponents. we need a system that uses voting systems that have a high degree of integrity that are well defended even if you're skeptical the risk that a state actor would attack is very high
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if we should have the systems be secure. i think the amount of dark money has made it hard to understand the candidates and supported by the large numbers of peopl peope since large numbers of dollars i think that undermines democracy salt of those things are true regardless of how you feel about a particular fbi memo and i think it is also true that donald trump and his cabinet of billionaires or producing policies with a small number at the extent of the larger number of people and ultimately at the expense of everyone in the world because they deny climate change and get a 10-year-old and i'm hoping they won't be digging through the rubble for canned goods and the only way we will do something about climate
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change is if we elect leaders who don't think that it's a chinese hoax. anything else is a distraction. >> host: politicians were introduced to the character in homeland running for the california senate. talk a little bit about the character and is this your ideal candidate and if so, who would you be sent upon? >> guest: it's kind of thing that when i wrote homeland it seemed you could ever do it in the party establishment. i've been involved since the early days, and i've seen how far they could go and in placef party establishment come to this problem o were they just couldnt go any further. in particular they activated the net roots to get investigated
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but then he had himself clobbered by the movement in the form of th petite party that continues to be activated after, so i wanted to see what a politician would be willing to do with a network that was progressive and i think we are seeing that now in a few of the other affiliated publications and we'll see how that works after the election. i called up all of these strategists and people that have been involved in the campaigns over the years and i said if i sit here is a blank check, do whatever you want, you have great fund raising behind you, you can build ambitious thing. they all had these ideas for what they do and then i went to a friend of mine who was a very
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bright young man who had helped us on and everything else that i've known him since i was a child. they literally cleaned up piece of punctuation and have done all kinds of amazing things in his life. when he was asked in for, he did an analysis that showed the review articles that describe the potential liabilitiedescribe climate change.
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he downloaded a time of particles nobody knows exactly why, but he downloaded the content and he was allowed to access it anyone is about to double the articles he did in the budget for the public doma domain. if was prohibited difficult the computer fraud and abuse act they told him he was facing 35 years in prison and right before the book came out, he hanged himself at 26-years-old. it was a really tough moment for both of us but i went out on the
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road to put the boo the book and about his legacy and what he saw as a potential bidder politics for all of us. and ever since then, he hasn't been far from my heart when i think about what we can build it with an audacious politics might look like. >> host: the next call was from miami beach florida. >> caller: i am 83-years-old, and they've owned everything i've made. i have no responsibility and a lot ogive up time and time is my problem. it has to be structured. i think of my grandchildren and eventually all their life would be like mine, time and nothing
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to do so how do we structure of the time, and i think i take my lessons from the bible where people have to go every morning to say a prayer, they go in the afternoon to say another but they have to to be part of the community, and i wanted to hear what you have to say about that. >> the question of how we fill our time is one that has really intrigued economists. he wrote this essay how right about now we could expect to be working a 15 hour work week and we've struggled mostly with how to fill our time. what's happened instead as we've had a distribution in our wealth it's scrambling to figure out how to make sure they can live
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the economy filled with many hours and in a world where so many people are financially insecure. i'm trying to work out how old your grandkids would be. maybe around your grandchildren's age. those people are actually really struggling not to fill their time to find enough hours in the day to work. i hear what you're saying about the isolation of having time on your hand and the value of finding a community activity to do. someone raised by political organizers i know how being part of a group that has a remit than just these earthly things, that is a profound and moving thing and i urge you if you live in florida to think about how you might use your time.
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voter suppression is a really interesting political move because it is an attack that relies on but security experts fault security through obscurity. if works if you don't know that you have been. it's not actually technically hard to get back once you have been improperly purged but you have to know what happened before election day so someone has to come and explain to you what's going on and what to do about it. there are tricks to make it harder like they can close the places where you get a drivers license within walking distance of your home and then require a drivers license to get their butt really all it takes is shoe leather and a lot of talking to get around voter suppression, and that's been the most devastating in our democracy and it happens a lot in florida. florida is kind of ground zero with kansas and other states so
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if you are looking for something to fill your day and make the world better and more pluralistic and give everyone a say, sign up ten people to vote. it's like getting 11 votes herself. >> host: thousand oaks california we will hear from bob. >> caller: thanks for taking my call. just a quick question. this year marks the 200th anniversary of the birth of karl marx and i was interested in how you might approach this particular subject because he's always depicted as an old man with a bushy beard or you see him in a giant photograph in these parades in beijing and pyongyang. if you are considering doing a novel or a screenplay, how would you deal with the life of karl marx and in the interest of full disclosure i think that he is the future, not the past.
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>> guest: i'm the wrong guy to ask about writing a screenplay on karl marx. i think the most interesting thing is the social context that he comes from. all the other people whose ideas he was building on because he was a synthesis and he was embedded in a place where people had lots of different social ideas and people were engaged with and he, along with people of all political stripes whose words have changed the world. now was actually a political leader but all these people that are political thinkers whose ideas managed to change the world or all of them to be fascinating characters because they tend to dismiss the idea
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of. we value doing it or thinking about what to do and that's true anyone that's surrounded thinks about what we might do, their thoughts vanish within when they leave the world but there are few people whose words and ideas have profound effects for the good and for ill on the world around them and if i want to zero in on some thing about mark's that was important, it would be that. i think this is what they try td to do in the hamilton play and it's kind of a writer's conceit. i love hamilton and i think that miranda is a bona fide genius but there is something funny going on when a writer writes a story about a guy that did a whole bunch of things and incidentally was also a writer and decides the most important thing that the major universities created our financial system and was an
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incredibly talented journalist for the mosbut the most importas that he also wrote stuff, that it is a shining through t throut that's the most interesting thing about marx is that he is a guy that believed so much about his ideas and stories of his personal life are terrible and wonderful. his family was hungry and they had no money and are one point he couldn't go out because he pawned off his pant pins to papr writing materials and he was begging for another check. all that stuff is pretty interesting. there is a portrait of a very driven man. having said all that, behind every great man there is a woman writing down ideas that man is taking credit for and i would like to know more about the family because clearly they were nothing else alongside suffering. >> host: again a character named barbara, talk about the
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role you see the media and the themes you find passionate in the work of dhs what are you trying to say through her if anything? >> it's a journey from believing an intellectual action and group action and institutional action. he's someone who can beat up totalitarianism with his clever ideas and what he's discovered is the idea that the world is regulated by four horses, code which is technologically possible, what is legal, but it's profitable and what is socially acceptable. he works on all four of these eventually to obtain victory such as he does come and the journalists in the little brother novels are a normative force that's making the forceful argument to a wide audience
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about what is and isn't a reasonable thing to be asked to give up in the wake of an attack or in the face of a threat. >> host: from los angeles california, this is daniel. thanks for calling. >> caller: a couple questions. i used to go to a place called the change of hobbit in santa monica and it disappeared a number of years ago. do you know of another bookstore that is just as good. number two, have you read anything by nick lane he wrote about the day that changes the world. >> guest: it sounds good. i love the subtitle. it is best to jus suggest the or bookstores around the world. we are entering a fragile renaissance of independent bookselling certainly the last two i was in 35 to 45 cities and
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most places it was so lovely to see one of them. in california, the one i am really in love with this borderline books and they are not in southern california, and shortly they will be moving to have to crowd funding to build for themselves from the people who love story. they were on the verge of bankruptcy because the landlord raised the rent and we didn't want to flash their pay so they did a crowd under baited infrastructure crowd under so they wouldn't be subject to the real estate market. it's pretty remarkable and it shows you what the hub for the community bookstore can be. before coming down to the studio i went to one of my bookstores and had breakfast. it's a hell of a bookstore and then i've done events at another fantastic radical bookstore.
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>> you tell us there are among the three you enjoyed whe enjoyo be. we can talk about those books and what you got from them. >> since the book is coming out in a couple of weeks you have to remind m me the authors with reading books. i was one of the guests and i was on the panel and i hadn't paid attention to the other panelists named because i just finished her book and it's her debut book she got online comics and artists and drew this on insta graham and she is a story border she works for disney studios in burbank near where i live and she had drawn all of these comic strips. it's a kind of lighthearted
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commitment. some of them are single debate coach and others are more ravenous. when they paid them to put them all together in a single book called women's world, she pieced them together in a story border way that reminds me give i a bia really good episode of portly and be a. some of them are lightweight. then there's a beautiful pale. it is lighthearted and terrific. it's a book by bruce snyder, one
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of the world's foremost security experts and he's written several books. he wrote one of the afterwords too little brotheafterwardstoo s next book and it's a comprehensive look at how cybersecurity got so bad. but the incentives were to make the security back and what the outcome has been in the real world with the outcome is likely to be and how we can fix it, why do we probably won't fix it and what's going to happen because we are not going to fix it which is a disbelief to hard chapter for cybersecurity, how we got here, where we will go and what we can do then. i mostly read for then the next
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book he is one o he's one of ths when i was growing up going to the library they put us in a workshop together when i was 16-years-old. he's a fascinating character. his father was a tv repair man. they are sectarian and split off whenever they have a dispute and more liberal ones go west so by the time you get there you have them in the night tv repairman. it continues for another book callecalled lock step and it's t a world in which we saw the vast businesses between inter stellar bodies and material policies.
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in the interim, they unmask the resources we need to have that one day and the univers end of e occurs by from our individual perspective we go to bed and wake up the next morning within the abundance of what we need the machines are keeping people going. some people live on the small-scale this is about and it's about a murder mystery on the evening when they wake and come back to take the group and
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they think of themselves as caretakers and the rightful owners in the billions who come in as the janitors and it's a wonderful book. >> host: philadelphia pennsylvania james is next. >> caller: it's an honor to speak with you. i haven't read any of your books but i'm going to get some. three quick questions. what are your five favorite novels and in your opinion who were the most successful writers since 1950 in two is the first writer when you start rating you are astonished, minus philip when i first discovered him a.
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>> guest: like i said i can't pick favorites. you should have a thousand favorite writers, not one. to answer your third question, the writer that marked a turning point in my life there have been lots of turning points but one of the early ones i remember and a writer that doesn't get enough credit still alive and kicking in new york i read a book called alan mendelson the boy from mars but he just wrote two books, about 8-years-old now and they are a retelling of the odyssey and the iliad instead of except for odysseus is about a boy and his father that leave los angeles for a loose meat sandwich at the derby but it's like the odyssey.
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very good. >> host: george from massachusetts, go ahead. >> caller: i heard you mention the name. can you talk about eleanor and you are interested in that kind of economics i would also recommend books on gondhi and economics. .. . >> the society of electrical
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engineers and then to tell viewers that doesn't matter how it is developed so he is a great fan of gandhi and has published i think everything of gandhi online at as a noblest she won the prize for her work on cooperation but that question of cooperation and competition is interesting there is that first proclamation that says there are times that i get jealous i want to kick them in the pants but then you look around the world to realize to reach that level of cooperation and interdependence for millennia where we have space programs
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and those are not dead through coercion is not like somebody has to flog everyone else to do it it is primarily done out of a feeling of cooperation and value to be a part of something larger than she tries to figure out how it is you can solve things without just privatizing especially i read a very good essay this morning that there like a fish very - - officially you cannot privatize that because they swim away like if you stop fishing cod because the stocks are depleting but that the spanish come along to harvest on the boundary of international waters then your cod fishery never bounces back so that is a hard issue
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putting more authoritarianism out it doesn't necessarily solve anything and often makes it worse teeseven we have one more hour with cory doctorow please stick around. as we head into the break we have cory doctorow talking about his non- fiction work. >> the major publishing world has the same 21st century merger and acquisition that every other sector is subject to whether automaking or energy or logistics for retail or finance we are down now to five big publishers, for big labels and five big studios are practically out of
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competition. you don't have to be a radical economist to observe the sellers get a worse deal and you see that reflected with the kinds of deals the major publisher studio labels offered to those creators if you are a musician in one of very lucky few that manages to get a record deal it includes it deducts a fixed percentage for breakage that dates back to the physical records and a record that statistically of those made in the factory on the way to the record store is deducted from your mp3 royalties. what is that underlying message? did you ever see the lily tomlin sketch with the phone company we don't have to care where the phone company.
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the message is it is only for labels we all take breakage if you don't like it then hit the bricks the worst you could be offered by a major financing organization or publisher has to be the best one that you think you can get by yourself so even like me who goes through traditional publishing channels your deal gets better as a function of how many independents are out there so in print publishing now if you sell a novel they take rewrites but now international rights all territories english also increasingly your graphic novel all things that they would have retained historically and then paid for separately for each one. so we need the independent sector but it is under attack
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through the whole history the major corporations making up the entertainment industry have lawmakers and regulators credit that burden to being an independent platform and then with the works of independent musicians youtube has to have a multi- hundred diller's - - dollar system that they check to see whether or not anything you upload has previously been registered as copyright and if it has it will not lest you - - what you post the work youtube was started by three people in a garage but if you want to start a competitor today that only three people but also content id for hundred million dollars so the
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only competitors we will see in the future will look just like youtube from giant corporations and have exactly the same approach to their supply chain the new boss is the same as the old boss teeseven you allowed your books to be downloaded for free. >> not all of them when my producers allow that but it does help me sell more books if they buy a book of mind today especially if they have never heard of me another i don't think realistically i don't have any way to stop people and then anything to
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reduce their ability for what they don't want to pay for not only stops them from downloading but also created a fragile internet where it becomes easier and easier for censorship to occur so we or the barrier that is infringing copyright with the bad actors including autocratic government so if anyone does so not because they don't have a choice maybe i could buy telling i would put them in the poor house but i would much rather buy them because they fear - - think i'm a good
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guy so with that new kind of web store into my publishers all over the world i said i want to become a retailer for my own e-book instead of amazon you buy them from me so that 30 percent jeff beezus would take i can put in my pocket the remaining 70 percent goes back to you then you take 25 percent of my royalties and send it back to me and it will be in a bookstore just like the physical books there is no digital rights are locked to a specific device it is a standard file if you decide never to buy another one of the books don't go away and also it has no license agreement is not like being dumb enough that i can punch
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your grandmother or where your underwear or make long distance calls which is a standard deal when you buy or do anything online. that is been on my website for a year that people to choose to support underwriter directly and that support can also benefit the publishers that invest where i work in my agent who did so much to make those happen but it seems to be a pretty good model. >> describe your sites quick. >> one is called boing boing. >> the first one i ever sold that is where my bookstore is crap it has videos of me speaking and short
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stories and news about upcoming tours and visits boing boing .net is a website i coed it with four other friends and it is a print magazine that i use to sell with my business partners they asked me to guest edit in 2001 i have been doing that ever since over 17 years maybe ten short articles a day that i see that is noteworthy enough to draw attention to it later it has been enormously gratifying. and it makes reasonable income for all of us as well but also
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it's of a - - a way to stay directly connected to my readers and a network of people who share a like-minded interest. >> when you associate with your readers? is the internet? e-mail? twitter quick. >> all of the above. i have a very active account on twitter. twitter is where i celebrate my mood board i follow all these people that is an antiquated social network that is quite lovely when it works and has a really nice culture but unfortunately it was sold to yahoo and now it belongs to verizon that tumbler is also home to the image boards for vintage advertising materials
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or talking heads just weird visual stuff that i follow i put that all up on twitter throughout the day and once a day i go and look through at boing boing post that i want to revisit either because they were very wrong or prescient for a new fact that has happened and i tweet to those out on the schedule and then twitter is how i banter that is the drumbeat in the background every 15 minutes one comes out when i should be reading a novel instead i'm dipping into twitter that is where that lovely interaction happens but i have a lot of correspondence with the public e-mail address is back as far as 1993 in corresponding with
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strangers ever since teeseven because you deal with privacy and surveillance on the internet what do you do to protect yourself? do you buy things online? what about privacy? . >> privacy is about threat modeling and what you are worried about there is no such thing as privacy per se but someone i'm not worried about being private but my face but i am more oppressive government or from stockers so one of the things i have done is now rent a private mailbox and not give my home address to anyone so that could be an enormous amount of power to give out an address that
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people can reach me out and then have people show up at my house. i use really good strong website passwords that is an operating system that does all the things they do accept it is free and open they have a password generators to every password that has a password they are all the encrypted file doesn't live on the cloud i download my e-mails to my own server i maintain my own e-mail server i use vpn and lockers privacy badger to block a track on - - the trackers on the web. >> hello there.
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go ahead. >> good morning gentlemen. you are one of the most speaker authors i have seen in quite a long time. i salute you. >> that is so kind of you. >> it is inspiring you go into such great detail about those minute things i would like to know your thoughts on the current state of america that state of hyperreality. i will clarify if you read brave new world and the more prescient and accurate with that hyperreality but we live
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in a world where it is more satisfying to be entertained to be entertained by a spectacle and to be distracted to learn truth can you please comment? . >> i think they have a lot to say for our age but i also think networks allow us to find news that is salient and not a spectacle so this is how the networks get used and not the existence themselves some of the best commentary did an appearance on the media talking about facebook it
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offers two things of value to its users and the first is a directory of a hard to find trait that share your political views same small town, the same high school and you form communities around her interest. it's really good at giving you a directory then it supposes the reason it is so bad that facebook makes its money through engagement by how long you stay on the service if all you do is stay in touch with your family where people have that have the same rare disc - - disease on the average day you don't have much to say you just want to exchange a
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heartbeat a couple of message go by here's the kid. we paid off our mortgage or whatever. small things but not this continuous tempo is extremely satisfying and fulfilling but it doesn't keep me there all day long facebook makes money how many times you load a page to see a new ad so it makes news viral they want a spectacle that keeps you clicking so they have a system that is grounded to find whatever it is that increases your engagement and that is increased whether or not it increases your pleasure so to make you do want to do more
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doesn't mean you enjoy it more you may enjoy it less. i don't have facebook or insta graham but using those services is less satisfying than they would be with those engagement tools built in. i think it's dangerous to say it's a mistake to give them tools to connect with other people who share their interest if people share your interest and find ways to work with them that's how we became the civilization that we are today that gives us the power to do what one person can do and another example of this that is salient is what happened when google started to pay programmers on how much they engagement they had her versatile pleased people were but search is not a service that has a lot of engagement if it works well then you are done you are finding something
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effectively it is a one and done interaction. that does not produce another search and another search so i discovered one year ago i was anxious all the time specifically about donald trump killing us in a nuclear war or some variation but i realized there was a lot of small interactions i had with google search on an android phone trump headlines were shoved into my eyeballs so for example, i will go to dinner with a friend we are sitting across from each other and as you do that you look up the google started to show you a trend in the search when you tap in the search bar nobody searches to find out what you're searching about you search to find the answer in the bar. so whenever i would tap that
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it would show me trump will kill us all and nuclear war and these incredibly ghastly things people were searching about and the feedback then i would try to have dinner and instead of having a lovely conversation i spend the whole meal worrying about dying. right or i grab my daughter santa to go out to school the last thing you do is check the weather and the weather app that google provided shows headlines to find if you need a jacket now that nuclear war was intending instead of having this where we walk together mommy - - this daddy moment to talk about what is on her mind i spent the whole time thinking about nuclear war.
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they are 11 menus deep it is an enormous effort to turn this off does that mean i don't want to search? no. it means that people who designed the services have been given bad incentives to make them use in ways at the expense of our pleasure for engagement if there is an answer to this to find ways to improve the pleasure of a service whether or not it increases your engagemen engagement. >>caller: good afternoon. i have a question and you mentioned a young man that committed suicide we see julie and a staunch have you heard of doctor hammer discovering the cause and meaning of all illnesses and had to go to norway and that the findings
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more than any of the science section i have ever read. let the first time i have ever seen it. . >> i'm sorry i haven't but i will have a look when i am done with the show. >>host: aaron swartz says his ideas about engaging with a political system to be most effective of today's politics. >> what he wrote for me in home in what ways notes on - - most is that leveraged personal connection with any social network that who you should be talking to based on these issues and where they lived and so on that incentivize you to report back
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how they share with other organizers but on the mass automated scale to organize your friend at any given moment but less the conversation in the hands of people. was an exciting an idea but a lot of the platforms are doing this now. >> and just a brief description. >> for the wind is about workers in china who are also gamers who find fault around the world to have the vanguard to have a general strike and evades their surveillance and with that social organizing tool for the independent trade
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unions in china. >> pirate cinema was passed in the uk to give the home secretary to take away the internet connection as the most salient fact about your computer you are using it to watch tv the wrong way and the mission that showed access to the internet had better employment and more civic and political engagement that our whole family could lose their internet because one family may or may not be watching tv the wrong way so the way it was delivered through the internet it was dependent on you staying good with the entertainment companies.
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>> coming to the internet and privacy. >> gd puerto rico quick. >> yes that was the e.u. wide rule it is a mixed bag but there is much that i think is going in the right direction some of that i don't think you could enact here because the way the first amendment interacts with digital technology that there has to be real informed consent so you may have noticed that in order to use the service you are expected to click through the agreement that is 20000 words long that literally makes your cerebral spinal fluid leak out of your nostrils and your ears if you try to read it so we are subject to notice at any time after you read that it doesn't matter because he will change it tomorrow and not tell you.
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the gd puerto rico says anything in terms of service you have to individually present each term to the user they can say yes i read and understand and they should be able to read and say i understand what this means so to put this against the general counsel with these terms of service why not quite it doesn't cost anything to grab it but the product managers say it makes us stressed as less and the council says shut up but if you have to click okay 380 times for the terms of service that means 99.9 percent of all new users bail before they go through the terms of service
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the general manager can walk into the boardroom with a single graph that is generated the user base falling off a cliff to say we should only be asking the three things we use the data for not 300 things we might use it for in the future so that is a pretty good idea. >>host:. >> it is so nice to get to know cory doctorow and a website where i can become better acquainted with his books and his whole ideas make me think again and also to maintain our individualism is so important at the same time
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and cooperation with other people i thoroughly enjoy it. thank you so much. >> that was very kind. thank you very much. >> next color good afternoon. >>caller: do you feel that issuance in $1,991,240,000,000,000 by george w. bush that liz identified versions coming through on september 11? and what about the $3 trillion missing from the defense department given to us on septeh and what are your thoughts
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about the deliverance of building materials without forensic examination quick. >> i am not super familiar with a lot of those although i do know the gao is missing trillions but the number has just gone up they just keep pushing off reports but i guess when ever i am confronted what judgment history should pass on regimes or presidencies for controversial acts in a very practical way can we indict them in terms of history without reaching the things there is no consensus?
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in the world trade center it would if i think it's an inside job and without regard to those conspiracy theories that i find them i glazing to think about if i ever sit down to consider them that this is a man who spent trillions of dollars invading countries empirically was not involved online 11 to stabilize the whole region killing hundreds of thousands of people in iraq and millions in the region and tens of contractors and i think surely we have enough to indict him and say as a president in human, this is a this - - a person history should judge as harshly as we can imagine without reaching two areas where you have to
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believe in something there is no consensus to indict him. his sins are so manifest and obvious and are not controversial. >>host: you write about death because some of your books it is called from the magic kingdom i wrote a book called rapture of the nerd it is more about consciousness than debt although what i'm trying to dig into there is a belief and never sure if it's a spiritual belief someday they can simulate a consciousness to become immortal or like a god
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because the computer program goes on forever and maybe it can run a lot faster and that's the same thing as smarter or running copy devices if nothing else it's a new capability that we don't have. as a technical question it is ambiguous we don't even know if we can simulate a brain in the computer there is an idea of what will happen is we will have remediation for defects in the brain maybe you have a stroke and then you lose the optic nerve but the amount of
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the brain we know how to replace but i don't know. but not one from technology we don't know which parts are hard or easy but i do think absolutely it is the case that the technologies are useful in themselves the story of prosthetic legs that our faster than the legs the median person has and we went from in the year speakers to be remedial technology for people who lost their hearing to what people here sound at a greater distanc distance. there is an idea to have a
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bionic arm that will cut years off to get it but i'm interested in the philosophical questions it raises how you know, if it is you inside the computer and how do you know, if it's you outside of the computer? one of the ways we define a person is by how they respond to a stimulus so to know whether you are pedro we can ask you a question and then ask you later if you answer at the same way if the question is intimate and personal and revealing enough we can say we are pretty sure we are talking to the same person but people have revelatory experiences. oppenheimer says i have become death destroyer of world and changes his answer to the most salient questions of his life. so these are questions that
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were pretty abstract the way we think about people and software. but then there are a lot of responses that are like pedro somewhere where or calm and that all within the envelope that would come from you. and if you look far enough ahead at pedro software we can manipulate all the different ways you would react to a different situation and find the one of the responses that are very real rare and steer you through these situations through the software to
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overcome these very difficult situations the most difficult is to realize that you are now dead and assimilation of yourself most rest on that revelation would have an absolute meltdown at no good use to anyone but there is a corner of all responses that allow you if that is raised you can find the one genuine of billions of possible and then take you one step at a time they call that living within the envelope these artificial persons in the book start to wonder about what it means to live in that envelope so you could think of it as a metaphor you are still you but you have been constrained to a
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narrow envelope of your genuine and real responses. but it is a channel through them. . >> that is the same existential crisis a lot of us do to embrace a philosophy. >>host: john from california. >>caller: hi. i am just curious to know if you have ever read the works of larry nevin? he has just written so much i just wondered if you had some favorites. >> i really like the dream parks book that are increasing now because it is a futuristic theme park that looks like virtual reality played out i've had an interest in theme parks for a long time. i worked with disney
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imagineering and did a lot of work for them almost none of which i'm allowed to discuss because of their nondisclosure although i can say - - but the depiction of the theme park is interesting but dream park is a really good novel. >> what was the reaction by disney that it featured quick. >> the employees loved it i think everybody likes to see themselves in fiction. people like in dc like it people in tv and so on indefinitely because they would write to me i'd make friends with them and go down to imagineering or to the studios they all have my books on their shelves so that is cool. no one from general counsel's
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office ever talk to me about trademark concerns or what have you. but i imagine the fact that i worked for a nonprofit on free speech probably thought we shouldn't make this guy into our test case. >> but with homeland and little brother they make an appearance in both of those and a lot of my short stories. odysseus is a remarkable organization i've worked off and on for them over 15 years as a nonprofit funded by individual small many donations they really spend all of their time thinking about what it is they can do to make sure the internet is safe for users to use to ensure that the privacy interest of individuals are not covered with the big tech
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platforms and the big entertainment companies to strike a bargain. >>host: you write novels but you are working on a series quick. >> yes it didn't start off as our project but therapy i was very anxious some people anxious about contemporary events. i wrote an article called unauthorized bread about refugees who live in housing in boston that are forced you access by a different lobby the lobby only's mom - - the elevator only stops in the appliances extract maximum
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revenue the fridge only accepts food and all of these companies are bought with hedge funds that milk them dry and put them into bankruptcy so the jailbreak are appliances which is great until the companies are rebooted and those that live there realize they are about to be detected and lose their home to be deported and possibly be killed so i wrote this my publisher really loved it they wanted to bring it out in the new year really fast. then there was a bidding war for the book and all the foreign publishers bought it there is a film option in the meantime i was writing other stuff so that i wrote a novella like a superhero's story the analog to superman
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inspired about the book of eric garner and after he intervenes he discovers his likeness and humanity are contingent and acting on the authorities he becomes racialized just as the person who took the beating and his journey from there and what it means to go from a symbol of something that presents that existential risk to the power structures of america that i wrote a third one i just finished last week that is called radicalized about middle-class white dudes who watch their loved ones die which is preventable because the insurers turned them down so then they kill medical executives and insurance executives and how long it takes them to be called
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terrorist and what happens when people who represent their respectable or immune face of america go beyond the pale even when the cause is just. so my publisher read all three of these and got really excited and i told him about the fourth one i'm working on so now we are in discussions what will happen next they could come out in one volume it all happened this week. the fourth one is about a proper towering in his bunker dying of colorado on the heels of the story of the sanitation workers in the city because if we ever do face that existential collapse, the people who will get us working again are not those in the bunkers but those that get sanitation going because you cannot shoot choler cholera.
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>> the office of intelligence and a guy name roger took the technology with him when he left the navy and made into open source it gives increased privacy and anonymity online and the publisher is a division that is the last of the big five publishers to be owned by a family versus a company the largest english-language science fiction publisher in the world that have been my publisher since the beginning. >>host: now we are going to new jersey. >>caller: i think the refugees that they have enough money to get here and have family because you never hear of a refugee leaving by themselves hardly ever there are more people like myself
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that will support a refugee in the united states with immigrants coming to the united states. i believe they deserve what they get if they are being punished. they have advantages they have a sob story when there are more people in the united states who don't have family or friends or relatives. >> thank you i'm an immigrant my mother is a refugee my grandmother and what you say it sounds like that my father wasn't raised in the soviet union we are a country of refugees and immigrants my father is an immigrant. i have profound empathy for americans who are isolated and alone and those for all over the world who come here and to
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come together against all of us - - all the people who put us in the situation but if we allow ourselves to be divided and they win and if you want to spend the rest of your life not solving the problem that we have of isolation or struggle then by all means allow yourself to be tricked into be the most desperate among us otherwise those that suffer at the same hands of you and do something about it. but please remember the people that you are talking about our people like me. i am the son of the asylum seeker and i am an immigrant if you say they don't deserve anything more you are talking about me.
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>>host: when you write your books long-term other areas of science fiction you have not explored yet quick. >> yes. if you are not coming up with great science fiction ideas then you are not trying i have a long file of things i want to try to write some day. and like i said earlier they all circle around the same ideas telepathy of taking an idea for my head and putting it into yours and crystallizing that idea the more talk about it the clearer it becomes i am excited about unauthorized bread because it is the idea it is out of your control it is an important danger to you but computers under your control as a source of power. >>host: when you decide to write on a topic what is the process quick. >> i have a bunch of stupid writer tricks they break
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writers into two groups of people one who flies by the seat of their pants and because i'm very busy with other things in writing is not the only thing i do i write a little bit every day a steady amount and i'm always thinking about how my protagonist can be a real person in a physical place to have a detailed idea where the place and person is because we don't care about imagining - - imaginary people that real people cf to trick "the reader" to make them think as though they are real. they don't float freely in space put them in a place give them a problem to solve we like to watch people solve problems no one knows what our
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ancestors did but maybe because they saw people solving problems then you could solve them on your own so we are nosy but only if it is a plausible chance to solve it nobody wants to watch a fly bead itself to death against a windowsill but with higher stakes with the problems they failed to solve that there is a rising tension that you can always reach a climax and then at the end of the story i approach it with the points i want to hit like spending a day at disneyland you will go to the haunted mansion and "pirates of the caribbean" and a few other things not the order but just check out the lines often times if i'm at a crossroads in a book i will have these debt pieces i know
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i want to get to i will say can i direct the story by shaping the next problem to take me there? >>host: you have written a lot of characters which one best represents cory doctorow? . >> no one has ever known what another person is thinking ever so all characters represent the author my aspirations or my fears or superstitions or prejudice but they all represent me because they cannot be anything except me. >>host: do you like one better quick. >> i like and hates them all of course, little brother from homeland a minor character in the novel and one of his nemesis in the beginning and the end of the other two so to
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deal with her she is in - - very ambivalent about him that has been in educational experience going through her eyes. >>host: steve is next. good afternoon. >>caller: high. i have a question have you ever read a book called - - what do you think of it. >> she was way ahead of her time if you look at the early cybe cyberand getting out of the mid- eighties from the seventies and sixties definitely has a superb stylist but as someone who derives a lot of pleasure from
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technology that behaves like technology, i think her stuff does not date well that he is a giant in the field and deserves to re-read to this day. >>host: from kansas we have joe. >>caller: thank you for taking my calls i've been listening to you for three hours the grace you tell what that lady who called a few moments ago was spectacular i want to complement you. but i am so intrigued buy you as a person we all have varying views of what is acceptable as a travesty but i had to pick up the phone when i saw how you handle that.
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>> that is very kind of you as a canadian one nation under canada we say. thank you very much. i am under no illusions there are good forms of discourse and bad forms and one of the things i hope i can get better at in my life is getting better at talking to people i disagree with and finding ways to find common ground. >>host: is that because they are interested in your books quick. >> i often run into people who have different views from me politically from enjoying my work my nibble on - - my books from the libertarian futurist society almost what i think as honest brokerage they really have thought through what they
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believe and they disagree with me and i disagree with them on personal matters we have substantial of discussions over our differences but what they disagree with is what i actually believe and not the caricature of what i believe maybe that's where we cannot get any better when we both really understand what the other believes and we still differ but at least there is an area where we stood genuinely disagree and not the caricature. i love that kind of discussion those are the very best. >>host: if somebody is new where should they start i hope i get better with the writer as every book but if you are a young reader bathing suit
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error material may not appropriate for all leaders young adult novels are appropriate for all readers where adult novels may not fit young adult novels are great to read i read young adult novels all day long. >>host: what do you like best quick. >> i don't have favorites. [laughter] but scott just published a new book these are the most exciting and those that for young girls and i strongly recommend and those young adult novels and with that
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spectacular groundbreaking literature. >> when the body of work is completed. >> what you want posterity to me he tried? how about this. he tried his best and try not to be a jerk while doing it. >>host: cory doctorow where can i find you. >> put me into google i am the first result also you can find my e-books or to barnes & noble. i am on twitter also boing
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boing .net. >>host: cory doctorow thank you. >> it was such an honor
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page. >> good morning, i'm senior fellow at the heritage foundation. our subject today is it humane to be a socialist. highly relevant subject it is.


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