My weekly collection of the provocative, intriguing, or curious, in a world where the house is falling down. The contextual, the cultural, and other things that catch my eye.

Image: Wikimedia

  • Rock climbing tells us a lot about productivity gains. We over-estimate the effect of technology, and under-estimate the effect of spreading knowledge. RelatedRichard Jones responds that maybe technology does matter. (Thanks to Joe Ballantyne for first link and note)
  • You can support Extinction Rebellion but worry about its strategy. XR might hold itself back because it has a flawed theory of change based on a misreading of earlier, non-white, non-violent protests. Long but worthwhile.
  • Images made by machines for other machines. Artist Trevor Paglen inserts a human eye into the world of images that train AIs.
  • Welcome to vaportecture. Idealised images of future buildings: an artform that “combines architecture, marketing, futurism, and a whimsical-bordering-on-psychedelic approach to portraying a fever dream for public consumption.”

If you see an article worth sharing on Sixes and Sevens, please add it to the Comments.

“The whole world’s at sixes and sevens, and why the house hasn’t fallen down about our ears long ago is a miracle to me.” (Thornton Wilder)