cyberanthropology reviews

Now that some reviews of my book ‘↑Cyberanthropology‘ have seen the light of day, it makes sense to begin to collect them [naturally they’re all in German]:     The Titel-Magazin was first with ↑Ein Buch mit System! (27 September 2011). As short as enthusiastic—and it is very short.     Next came Karl-Heinz Kohl’s review in the Frankfurter Allgemeine Zeitung: ↑Völkerkunde war gestern, Cyberanthropology ist heute (16 November 2011). Unfortunately behind a paywall on the FAZ-server, but buecher.de has the ↑full text of the review online (and perlentaucher.de posted a ↑short notice).     On 30 November 2011 SWR2 … Continue reading

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setting minifigs free

Since 2011 the minifigures the LEGO group sells on magnetic bricks (so you can place them on your refrigerator door) are firmly fixed onto their magnetic pedestals. As it seems this has economic and copyright reasons, and the licence holders of franchises like ‘Star Wars’ and ‘Pirates of the Caribbean’ demanded the fixation—just if minifigs had no rights. Last year I bought some magnetic sets in Berlin’s LEGO flagship store. The minifigs were simply connected to the magnetic bricks in the usual LEGO way. Some of the sets I bought this year are fixed ones, which is a big annoyance. … Continue reading

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orthometals

Some weeks ago we went swimming at the ‘↑Müllersches Volksbad,’ Munich’s gorgeous Art Nouveau indoor pool facility. After having swum some lanes I took a respite in the shallow part of the pool. I hadn’t been swimming for months and may have overdone it a bit on the first lanes. Feeling a slight dragging pain in my right shoulder, I hovered in the water, admiring the architecture, and rubbed said shoulder cautiously.     Submerged to his knees an elderly gentleman smiled fatherly at me from the stone steps leading into the pool.     ‘Got one, too?’ he asked … Continue reading

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commodifying bodies

At one level, then, the commodification of the body is a new discourse, linked to the incredible expansion of possibilities through recent advances in biomedicine, transplant surgery, experimental genetic medicine, biotechnology and the science of genomics in tandem with the spread of global capitalism and the consequent speed at which patients, technologies, capital, bodies and organs can now move across the globe. But on another level the commodification of bodies is continuous with earlier discourses on the desire, need and scarcity of human bodies and body parts for religious edification, healing, dissection, recreation and sports, and for medical experimentation and … Continue reading

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thai flood hacks

↑Thai Flood Hacks is a wonderful collection of pictures showing off ingenious technical contraptions cooked up for dealing with the flood in Thailand. With their ↑truck-canoe hybrids [still only at ye ole xirdalium] the people of Bangkok already have shown their skill in dealing with water and in the active appropriation of technology—now they drive it to new heights. Also very worthwhile in these respects: ↑afrigadget and ↑street use. ↑thai flood hacks via ↑entry at ↑ethno::log … Continue reading

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talking cyberanthropology

Several weeks before this year’s conference of the German Anthropological Association (GAA/DGV) took place (14-17 September in Vienna, Austria), Thomas Lohninger contacted me via e-mail. He is the founder of, and force behind ↑Talking Anthropology which went live in July 2009. Since then he has produced and brought online 39 podcasts, 16 of them in English. The idea of Talking Anthropology is to bring topics, notions, and ideas from social and cultural anthropology to a broader public. The podcast seems to be a fitting format for that endeavour. The download numbers, for some of his productions in the thousands, confirm … Continue reading

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cyberanthropology

My new book ‘↑Cyberanthropology‘ has been published. You absolutely are invited to order it online ↑via amazon [I have absolutely nothing against you clicking the like-button there] or ↑via Peter Hammer Verlag. Offline every decent bookshop can get it for you, too. As the book is in German, here is my description of its contents in German: In “Cyberanthropology” geht es um moderne Technik und den Menschen, um Computer und Internet, um Computerspiele, aber auch um GPS, Automobile, Roboter …     Was vor nicht allzu langer Zeit Science Fiction war, ist Lebenswirklichkeit geworden. Die vielfältigen Erscheinungsformen digitaler Elektronik und … Continue reading

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african roads

Motor roads, together with their rules and conventions for using them, are quite literally cultural constructions. In this sense, the road regime in large parts of the African continent is still under construction. Road-making and road use draw from North Atlantic models but observation of the African road makes clear that beyond the surface of adaptation to the North Atlantic model lie large spaces of creative reinterpretations and modifications …     For an anthropological research project on roads, transport and traffic in Africa, we offer a position for one doctoral student (E13/2), funded initially for two years by the … Continue reading

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kaizo mario world

impossibly hard variant of super mario world  This is to humble every single speedrunner, trickjumper, DeFRaGger, or first-person-shooter virtuoso/elitist who ever dared to badmouth about 2D jump’n’run sidescrollers and the supposed lack of skill involved in playing them.    The “kaizo” (“hack” or “mod”) of Super Mario World shown in the video was created by T. Takemoto. For the movie he made his friend R. Kiba play his creation. Obviously Kiba possesses god-like skill, but still Takemoto’s level’s are more than a challenge for him. The dramaturgy of the movie is only digestable for the real oldskool aficionados, I confess—but … Continue reading

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