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The latest weapon in Britain's ongoing war on its "out-of-control" youth: anti-teenager lighting. It's much like the violet anti-junky lighting often seen in public toilets and doorways, only it's tinted bright pink to simultaneously mock hormonal adolescent males' sense of masculinity and make their acne show up particularly vividly:
Meanwhile, the original anti-junky lights have been found to not only not work (ask any junky with a felt-tipped pen), but to also have unintended consequences:
Public toilets in Church Street, in Rugby town centre, were closed in February after a shocked cleaner discovered two people having sex inside. In a report to officers, Rugby borough council head of engineering and works David Johnson said the toilets were still suffering anti-social behaviour.
“The subdued lighting encourages an atmosphere conducive to sexual activity, while it is off-putting to the public wishing to use the facilities.
“Another problem is that graffiti written in certain pens looks spectacular under UV lighting.”
(via Boing Boing)
If one US Department of Homeland Security official has his way, airline boarding passes could be replaced with GPS-enabled wristbands containing remotely activated electric shock devices, which could be used not only to keep track of passengers but also to incapacitate any passengers found to be of a terroristic bent, allowing the rest of us to feel safer.
Scientists in Zurich have found that dosing people with oxytocin (aka the "cuddle hormone", associated with makes them pathologically trusting:
"Of course, this finding could be misused," said Ernst Fehr of the University of Zurich, the senior researcher in the study, which appears in Thursday's issue of the journal Nature. "I don't think we currently have such abuses. However, in the future it could happen."
"I once likened trust to a love potion," Damasio writes in Nature. "Add trust to the mix, for without trust there is no love."
Dose a group of people with oxytocin and it's group hugs all round. The problem with that is that they become easy prey for anybody wishing to take advantage of them, such as con artists. If a delivery system (perhaps an aerosolised form of oxytocin, or one that can be dissolved in drinking water) could be developed, oxytocin could also be useful as a non-lethal mass-behaviour-control weapon. Imagine oxytocin bombs dropped on Afghanistan, Iraq, Cuba or Venezuela; all the warring factions, insurgents and resisters put down their weapons and become one big happy family, with the added advantage that they're more than happy to sign over their sovereignty, oilfields, folk-song copyrights and traditional medicine patents, and give Starbucks a national coffee monopoly if merely asked.
(via bOING bOING)
The latest in street fashion: the No-Contact Jacket, a fashionable women's jacket of "exo-electric armour" which, when armed, delivers a powerful though non-lethal electric shock to anyone who touches the wearer.
The jacket is designed for women only. Its small size and narrow armholes are intended to prevent men from using it as an offensive weapon. Whiton conceded that women could use it offensively, and that it would be hard for police to arrest anyone wearing one.
The jackets are expected to cost US$1,000.
(Potential for offensive use? Two words: "dwarf tossing".)
The US military has developed what could be the ultimate Viridian weapon: fuel-eating bacteria, which devour oil and petroleum supplies, leaving humans unharmed. And to further realise the dream of a kinder, gentler, fluffier form of warfare, they're also experimenting with bombing enemy troops with Valium. Come to think of it, why not just bomb them with MDMA, and make everybody feel all loved-up and not at all in the mood for fighting?
The US Government is looking at the possibility of using mind-control nanotechnology against terrorism.
Yonas said he has talked with military officials developing mind-control nanotechnologies that would give war leaders a choice to "either blow up that building, or do something to the people inside, so the people inside lose the desire to continue with combat."
(That opens up a lot of possibilities. If you can use it to defend national security, you can use it for economic security. Make anti-corporate protesters into contently apathetic McWorld consumers, break down those pesky third-world peasants' resistance to buying Monsanto seeds and so on. (Just think: if Shell had this in the 90s, they wouldn't have had to have those Ogoni massacred; they could have just love-bombed them into compliance.) Or even use it on a broader population, making everybody more docile and more inclined to spend even more of their money on shiny crap, to the exclusion of everything else. I believe K. W. Jeter had a similar idea; he called it the "turd on a wire", one step better than the corporate-capitalist holy grail of the "turd in a can".) (ta, Mitch!)
We Have Control of the Mind: Given that the USA is about to harness its advertising industry to the Middle Eastern war effort, and some months ago, some pundit suggested that developing behaviour-modifying nanobots may be the most effective way to get rid of the Middle East's resentment of America, I have been thinking about how such schemes could possibly work, and have come up with some ideas for possible nanotechnological solutions to anti-American sentiment.
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