Category Archives: Blogging

Michaelmas and Me: 4/16 and the Internet

Perhaps I am encroaching on Tristan’s territory (see The Rest of the Internet); if so, I apologise, but this week I’m going to look at the role of the internet in the development of the story surrounding the Virginia Tech massacre (what has become known, to Americans, as 4/16 – I can’t help but feel that they have a predilection for branding events in overly-simplistic terms).

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The Rest Of The Internet: Anonymity

Many of the debates that rage around the internet today have to do with anonymity. Most of the time, on the national news networks, you see people referring to it in relation to oppressive regimes that regulate internet use in an attempt to keep their people stupid, China and north Korea being the classic examples. People living under these regimes need to stay anonymous when they use the internet to express their opinions or they’re going to vanish forever, Stalin style.

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The Rest Of The Internet: Web 2.0

web-20.jpgBroadband, as we know it, is a service that provides fast internet access down either a cable or a telephone line, or in some rare cases, a satellite dish. Now, for most people, that’s all they need to know. As long as it works and someone can show them a page full of pictures loading in less then a couple of seconds, everything is fine and dandy. However, there is a growing problem with broadband. This problem is given the wonderfully under-defined term of “Web 2.0”. In this article, I aim to talk about what Web 2.0 actually is, how it affects your computer, and how it affects, or will affect, the world as a whole. First, we need a working definition. Web 2.0 is a huge umbrella term which covers, it seems, every internet application you can think of that doesn’t just supply text and pictures. Classic examples of this are ebay and youtube, but even the humble comments button at the bottom of this article still counts. As more and more people become connected to the internet, they are starting to realise that the internet has the potential to replace all other methods of moving data. As I frequently put it, “If it’s 2-Dimensional, you don’t have to pay for it!” The Internet need not be restricted to simply replacing all other media, however. It can offer even more on top. Most people already know how to get things like TV, Radio and newspapers off the internet, but the real pull of Web 2.0 is the original ideas, like flickr, facebook and myspace. These are things that, although they easily could have, simply didn’t exist before the internet. Most of these services have come under attack by thousands of half-baked lawsuits (the main purpose of which, it seems, is for the prosecution to make it painfully obvious they have no idea how the internet works.) Thanks to this, it is finally becoming clear to most individuals that for every predatory paedophile on myspace, there are several schools worth of children usually more capable of defending themselves online then their parents are, and that these services are important, not just frequented by stereotypical geeks. People always knew that the internet has vast untold potential, but now some of it is starting to show.

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Michaelmas And Me: Whose Web Is It Anyway?

This week seems to have been divided into separate segments, mainly following the course of ‘If on a Winter’s Night a Traveler’ by Italo Calvino, the story of several novels which, amid confusion, become confused. Confused? So was I.

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Frank’s Travels: Cramps And Cold Sweats

It is a strange coincidence that, in this country, whenever I have been heading south I have been ill and whenever I have gone back north I have got better. Were I a superstitious man, I would take this as a sign and stop my gradual quest toward Mauritania and head back north to the welcoming arms of Chefchaouen. Being either too rational or too addled by fever to put two and two together, I continue into the ever more barren south, ever more ridden by the war being raged inside of me.

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I Understand How, But I Don’t Understand Why #3

A collective mumbling with jr2015 –

“Save the Cheerleader, Save the world”

I was moaning the other day that British television has become really awful recently but really, it was a foolhardy comment. The Beeb is still the worlds greatest television network even though the BBC Three experiment may be faltering and its budget has been reigned in. Its subtle integrations into the internet are proving successful and it provides me with regular selection intelligent entertainment such as Top Gear, Never Mind the Buzzcocks and Panorama. Just ignore the new Fame Academy style Musical show hosted by Graham Norton arriving soon.

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Filed under Blogging, Books, Comics, Hashmark Comics, I Understand How, TV, youtube

Frank’s Travels: “Next time, BANG, SHOT”

NEW! A Hashmark correspondent’s adventures in Morocco:

There are benefits both to traveling alone and to traveling in company. There is, however, only one way to describe the transition from one to the other: unpleasant. First comes denial. Unable to come to terms with the lack of companionship and irked by that dead end that comes directly after finishing something and discovering that you have no idea what to do next, I paced, worried and feverish. I then replaced my friends with a book, finishing “Earthly Powers” by Anthony Burgess in three days, thinking of little else in the process. Having completed that, a sense of excited acceptance came over me, gone were the days of shakes and obsessive pen chewing. This change was helped along by the reemergence of this trips buddy from Canada: Guy, with whom I share not only a language but also a propensity for making distasteful jokes about the overweight Spaniards, who have flocked here over the past few days in droves. With acceptance has come adventurousness, no longer tied down by the tepid and tame Pascoe or the fun but reclusive Duncan, I have begun taking large hikes up around the “horns” that surround this little town, jutting up from its sides like a broken bone from a leg (an analogy that will become relevant as the story continues). Continue reading

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