"You wake up to a jazzy MIDI version of the “Happy Birthday” song. Your smart thermostat and smoke detector are singing in harmony because today is your day. Your fitness tracker is vibrating in an unfamiliar Morse Code. Searching the internet, you come across a question in the support forums about it, explaining it is the preprogrammed birthday greeting silent alarm that you can disable after pairing the device again and updating your settings."
- The Internet of Things Will Ruin Birthdays — The Message — Medium (via thisistheverge)

(via thisistheverge)

"The triumph of advertising in the culture industry is that consumers feel compelled to buy and use its products even though they see through them."
- Theodor Adorno and Max Horkheimer, Dialectic of Enlightenment. (via bustakay)

(via socio-logic)

"As a means of social control, humor may function to express approval or disapproval of social form and action, express common group sentiments, develop and perpetuate stereotypes, relieve awkward or tense situations, and express collective, sub-rosa approbation of action not explicitly approved. Humor as expressed in the controlled laugh or smile may serve as a means of communication, signaling the intent and nature of communicating parties (Stephenson, 1951:570)"
- Stephenson, R. M. “Conflict and Control Functions of Humor.” American Journal of Sociology56 (1951), 569-74. (via ifuckinglovesociology)
"Mokyr’s emphasis on the market for ideas is surely right, for the Industrial Revolution was at its heart an intellectual explosion. It was a burst of ideas about how vast quantities of cloth could be made cheaply and how the power of steam could be harnessed. It was a connected stream of innovations by smart Britons who learned from one another in hubs such as Birmingham and London. But is it right to see the roots of this intellectual explosion in the Enlightenment? Mokyr is surely right that that the leaders of the Industrial Revolution were all practical men who were interested in knowledge, but must we credit the Enlightenment anytime someone pursues earthy insights in a methodical manner?"
- Thinkers And Tinkerers | The New Republic (via historyat)

(via historyat)