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Hacked by /.M4RY_PR0S4

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Here's another optional reading, again from De Landa.  It starts with a discussion of Vannevar Bush, the U.S. computer scientist and technocrat that oversaw the administration of America’s wartime science and engineering efforts (including the early stage Manhattan Project).  Bush recognized that the discovery and retrieval of information would be crucial to the future of science, and created MEMEX, a system of linking documents that prefigures the Web’s hyperlinks over forty years later.   

The passage moves into a discussion of mouse inventor Douglas Englebart (who recently died), who recognized that the future of computing lied in the creation of human interfaces.   It ends, remarkably, with the contributions of hacker culture, seen as the natural result of bridging the gap between computers and human beings.   

The passage of War in the Age... begins on page 217:

With the birth of computers after World War II the task of modern intelligence analysis was made at once easier and more difficult.   On the one hand computers allowed for the storage of large amounts of information, and this liberated the analyst from dependence on physical storage facilities.  On the other, computers increased enormously the amount of data that flowed into the analyst's hands for collation and assessment.  If computers were to be useful they would have to be transformed from mere producers of endless streams of data into useful instruments of analysis.

It ends on page 227 with the paragraph that begins:

In late 1988 a hacker released the first full-scale “virus” into the INTERNET, a national computer network, paralyzing it after a design error made the virus grow out of control.

In between is a pretty good overview of computing history from 1950 through the publication of De Landa's book in 1991.  

Its discussion of the extension of the machinic to the human is completely scooped by Donna Haraway, as her Cyborg Manifesto, made a similar case ten years before.  We'll be all over Donna Haraway later in coming salons.