Tag Archives: swarming

Lawfare Backlash: DirectBuy + Dozier Internet Law

As I wrote on Dreaming 5GW, these are some of the many blogs:

that are reacting to Public Citizen‘s posting of a legal threat (pdf) and subsequent reply (pdf) in the attempt of Direct Buy (and Dozier Internet Law) to shut down negative reviews online.

The case is informative because it shows how the generations of struggle depend on the scale you are looking at. Looked at one way, Public Citizen is engaging in a 4G campaign against aggressive legal threats on speech. But in another way, Public Citizen is a 5G organization, essentially unconcerned with the fate of DirectBuy or Dozier Internet Law, and looking to change the rules of the game under which the company and the lawyers operate This is because “generations” just measure the degree of kinetic dispersal, and a broader frame of reference allows one to see more dispersion.

Viral swarming

Robb., J. (2007). The coming urban terror. City Journal. Summer 2007. Available online: http://www.city-journal.org/html/17_3_urban_terrorism.html (from Global Guerrillas).

A few days ago, John Robb emphasized the danger of engineered viruses. The piece was a hit, being featured on adayinthelife, Ed Driscoll, jilosophy, Noisy Room, and Zenundit, among others. However, a focus on bioweapons overlooks a much more serious threat: bioswarming.

Certainly cheap, available viral technologies will hardly be an unreserved boon, but limits on conceptual complexitiy may prevent much harm. “Engineering” viri requires either the computational power or cognitive skill to model an unimaginatively complex program’s interaction on a world that’s exponentially more complex yet.

A graver threat, and one more in keeping with Robb’s affection for swarming and distributed action, is a natural plague. And considering that viri thrive on several forms of diversity, the fact that man is now an urban species is alarming. Especially when you consider that much of the Gap hosts large, urban, and poor populations that lives with minimal hygiene and a great genetic diversity (all the better for viruses to evolve in).

Human diversity is here to stay, and is indeed a weapon that works against any one virus being able to cut down a large swath of mankind. The rest of the risk factors, though, can be lessened through economic growth. “Cities” as we know them are much better than those in the Gap — indeed, by Gap standards we barely live in “cities” at all. But as long as the Gap exists, it (and not some crackpot scientist) is the most likely source for a plague. Indeed, nearly disease we know about is Gappish in origin (HIV, the flu, SARS, etc.).

Plagues are just one reason why a lassiez-faire attitude toward shrinking the gap is not just genocidal in effect against them, it is democial in effect against us. “Devil take the hindmost” translates to “just kill a lot of people generally.”

Shrinking the gap is the greatest human genetic engineering feet in the history of man. For the first time ever, genocide will not be a regular method of group-level selection. For the first time ever, mass rape will not be a regular method of group-level propagation. Such a breathtaking change is already the case among 2/3rds of humanity. We should shrink the gap not only to make their lives better, but to defend ourselves, too.

Shrink the Gap. Declare war on genocide. Overthrow the state of nature.

Open Source Conspiracy

In comments at his own blog and Dreaming 5GW, Wolf Pangloss takes the ball I moved down field (in “The Importance of 5GW” and “Describing the Military-Industrial-Syadmin-Complex“), and forms a flawless reverse Statue of Liberty play, stunning in its brevity and implication

Exactly, Shane. As I replied on my site before expanding it here, the way I see it, 5GW could encompass ideological swarming and other uncoordinated but coherent attacks. It could also encompass open-source conspiracies, memetic engineering, and bespoke ideologies intended to transform our allies or enemies, or influential third parties. This makes the composition of the 5GW force very flexible.

Further, as an attempt to change the reflexive actions of people in the society, 5GW clearly involves ideological changes to the target society. The active phase of a 5GW could consist of ideologues attacking using ideology as their weapon. And that’s why it’s dangerous, because it just keeps on going, rebuilding itself automatically whenever it is attacked, until the ideological/memetic programming behind it gets subverted/disarmed.

Once the ideology/meme is made ready and turned on the conspirators can retire. Their weapon and army will continue with its programming without any further intervention.

What interests me is how to subvert/disarm an attacking meme/ideology. What does it take? How long does it take? Etc.

How does this an open source conspiracy fit with the state-within’s transformation into the state-beyond? I have no idea, at least not precisely. Stay tuned. These are exciting times.

John Wiley Interscience and Defensive Swarms

In spite of an overly concillatory (if understandibly so) reaction, Jonh Wiley & Sons’ “Wiley Interscience” slappd-down of Retrospectacle apperas to be over. Boing Boing, SEED, Slashdot, Nature and other big shots entered the fray Even Scientific American spoke out on the power of the blogosphere’s immune system:

The most effective fighting force a blogger has is other bloggers. I cannot be certain that Wiley relented for any other reason than bad press, which they were getting from a number of people–including bloggers associated with other journals, like Nature, who are now valid members of the scientific community.

While some criticize the value or justness of autoimmunity, all bloggers can be thankful that there are other bloggers to stand up for them when powerful interests threaten them with judicial violence.

Distrubted Political Blog Swarming

Daily Kos Bandwidth Thieves,” Little Green Footballs, 8 August 2005, http://littlegreenfootballs.com/weblog/?entry=16978&only (from Jim River Report).

An interesting article on network attacks

Joe Sherlock discovered that a Daily Kos “diary” singing the praises of Keith Olbermann was using an image from his car blog The View from My Windshield—and committing the ultimate internet faux pas of “hotlinking” to the picture, stealing bandwidth from Joe’s site.

Of course, when someone commits this sin, the offended party has options available. Go see the result now at Daily Kos before they wake up: Daily Kos: Tonight! Everyone Watches Keith.


John C. Dvorak on Swarms

The Scheme to Discredit BitTorrent,” by John Dvorak, PC Magazine, 20 June 2005, http://www.pcmag.com/article2/0,1759,1829684,00.asp (from Slashdot).

Following up on a 4GPS2 network-on-network attack

Swarms. What Bram managed to figure out was a way to maximize throughput on P2P file distribution that went beyond server-centric methods, multicasting, edge buffering and all the other schemes that have come and gone. Moreover, this idea ends up not costing the person distributing the file a lot of bandwidth [what else besides “files” can be distributed in a physical person-to-person P2P network? — tdaxp[, because the file itself goes into the Net, becomes what is called a swarm, then uploads and downloads itself all over the place in bits and pieces from machine to machine. When you begin to download a file using BitTorrent, your machine immediately starts uploading the exact same file to someone else. This process is kind of like the fission demonstration with the mousetraps and the ping-pong balls, since your download becomes enhanced by others and you get multiple download streams. Meanwhile, you are still delivering bits from your file. Data is flying every which way and higher demand makes it work better!

Swarm, Waiting

Mr. Bram invented bittorrent, a popular tool for trading files. It is easy to see how the same concepts could be applied to war, and how is “bittorrents” could be applied as “wartorrents.”

Not all swarms are friendly. Or even non-deadly.

Blogosphere and Recruiter Swarming

History of Non-Linear Warfare,” by Sean Edwards, Swarming and the Future of Warfare, 2005, pg 69, http://www.rand.org/publications/RGSD/RGSD189/.

Recruiter stories,” by kos, Daily Kos, 14 June 2005, http://www.dailykos.com/storyonly/2005/6/14/162247/899.

Comments,” by PoliPundit, PoliPundit, 14 June 2005, http://polipundit.com/wp-comments-popup.php?p=8279&c=1 (from MyDD).

I haven’t been blogging more on Sean J. A. Edwards Swarming and the Future of Warfare because I was afraid it didn’t apply too much to Fourth Generation Politics. As if to prove me wrong, Heaven sent down two political swarming stories in the same day

First, conservative blogger PoliPundit gives in to strategic despair, refusing a battlespace because of liberal swarming

So why don’t most other conservative blogs allow comments? Because liberals are jerks. If a conservative blog allows comments, it is immediately overrun by juvenile, illiterate, liberal hecklers who ruin the comments section. We here at polipundit.com have been fighting this ever since I turned on comments, and only ceaseless vigilance has allowed us to keep the comments section open. If a larger conservative/libertarian blog, like InstaPundit, were to start a Comments section, then the blogger would have to spend every waking moment policing liberal trolls.

That’s like saying “Why should America leave Iraq? Because the terrorists are jerks.” Terrible, terrible, terrible advise.

Meanwhile, liberal blogger Kos wonders about military recruiters swarming students, preparing for 4GPS1/Agitation-Propaganda

Those of you who are military age, or with kids graduating high school, are getting swarmed with aggressive recruitment tactics. I see the stories in various threads throughout the site.

How about a cataloguing in this thread of those efforts?

Just those with military recruiter stories, please.

Swarming is characterized by pulsing attacks from many units from many directions. It is separate from guerrilla attacks, which are closer to attacks-of-opportunity. Visually:


Swarming and the Future of Warfare and Other Good Theses

Before I went on vacation, I set tdaxp to automatically posts sections of my thesis, A Computer Model of National Behavior. A much more interesting, better written, and fascinating work is Sean J. A. Edwards’ “Swarming and the Future of Warfare. Written as a dissertation for the Pardee RAND Graduate School, it looks at an ultra-violent form of distributed denial of service attack.

For a taste, try footnote 15 from the Introduction

On April 14, 2004 a Marine amphibious assault vehicle carrying supplies came under RPG fire, made a wrong turn into unsecured Fallujah area controlled by insurgents and was ambushed. The vehicle caught fire and the 17 man crew sought refuge in a nearby home. Within minutes at least 100 insurgents converged from all directions towards the firefight and plume of smoke, firing RPGs and small arms. A rescue force of 4 tanks, 6 Humvees, and a dismounted platoon with air support fought their way through enemy held terrain, moving with a 360 degree defense, and rescued the encircled crew.

A quick segue into computer science: some lines from Edwards masterpiece remind me of Doug Jennewein’s An Analysis of the N-Best Ant System: a General-Purpose Meta-Heuristic for Combinatorial Optimization, from which a powerpoint of the defense is available from USD’s Computer Science Research page. Also, many concepts can be horizontally mixed with Zacher and Bielenberg‘s blog clustering thesis

But all that distracts from the real point: Read Sean Edwards’ Swarming and the Future of Warfare. Hat-tip to new tdaxp commentator John Robb.