Yesterday at Re:Publica we came across a little booth to make your own signal blocking pouch for your mobile. In short: even if your phone is switched off, it is still traceable. By putting it in a Faraday cage, you render that impossible.

In this little DIY booth, you could make your own mobile phone pouch from a cloth with metal weave, thus creating a Faraday cage. The material is actually sold as a layer for beneath your carpets and behind your wall paper to reduce em-signals in your home.

Re Publica 2014 Berlin Re Publica 2014 Berlin

With a 10 minute effort, we cut the cloth, stitched it together with pins, and ran it through the sewing machine (a first for me 😉 )

Re Publica 2014 Berlin Re Publica 2014 Berlin

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The guy behind the booth pitched it as “perfect for during your next protest march!”. So if I ever end up in one, I will know how to make my phone invisible to police monitors ;). And you can do the same! Find instructions at I wonder if they will detect it at airport security.

At last week’s Reboot 10 Thomas gave me the opportunity to give a presentation in the main hall (see proposal). I talked about internet and mobile communications as two infrastructures that have come of age recently. I wanted to provide a way to look at the macroscopic changes this is working in our societies and step away from rear guard fights, or discussions muddied in details that are only relevant to singular tools, causes or incidents. However, providing such a more macroscopic picture should still work when seen from the individual. So that each of us can decide how to respond. That is where Monstertheory comes in, and a discussion of the attitudes, skills and tools that go with our new infrastructures. Also, these new infrastructures themselves are geared towards individuals looking to influence macroscopic events. So we are actually in a good position to take on the monsters in our vicinity. Provided you are able to recognize them.
The slides of my talk are available. In a next posting I will go into my story in some more detail.

Jyri Engestrom (Jaiku/Google) just pointed me to the fact that Google has announced a major step into the mobile market. Android is the name of a 34 party strong alliance around an Open Source platform for mobile phones. To converge computing and communication more. (Android originally is a mobile start up bought by Google in 2005.)
Google’s aim is to earn money with advertising on mobile devices. Original rumours were that Google would introduce a GPhone (like Apple’s iPhone). But instead they are enabling everybody in the industry to create their own phones as it were with the Open Handset Alliance.
Jyri summarizes Android’s key points in Twitter as:
* Android does not differentiate between the phone’s core applications and third-party applications. They can all be built to have equal access to a phone’s capabilities
* users will be able to fully tailor the phone to their interests. They can swap out the phone’s homescreen, the style of the dialer, or any of the applications
* a developer can combine information from the web with data on an individual’s mobile phone — such as the user’s contacts, calendar, or geographic location. With Android, a developer could build an application that enables users to view the location of their friends and be alerted when they are in the vicinity giving them a chance to connect.
* allows devices to communicate with one another enabling rich peer-to-peer social applications
This is very interesting news, and I guess last week’s announcement of OpenSocial was not all of it after all.
What I think is key in this news is that Google is creating possibilities for other parties so that they can make money over it doing what they’ve been always doing: search and advertisements. That is both what OpenSocial and Androids is doing for Google. More also on the Google blog.
Also there is this video about Android on the Google Channel on YouTube:

Afterthought: with OpenSocial and Open Handset Alliance / Android, it is also clear that Open will be the new buzz-word for the coming time in webmarketing. I guess that’s good if it helps us to leave the Web2.0, Web3.0, Web x.0 metaphors behind)