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Transport for London Oyster Card signed by William Gibson

Several characters in Zero History e.g. Milgrim and Heidi, take journeys on the London Underground Tube system.

Here is an image of a Transport for London Oyster Card - prepaid London Underground Tube and Bus travel card (but also a RFID / centralised database tracking and surveillance system) signed by William Gibson, at Forbidden Plant, London, Saturday 9th October 2010,

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To protect your privacy and personal security from 13.56 MHz licence free Industrial Scientific Medical radio frequency band snoopers (both legal and illegal). You can disable the passive radio tracking behaviour of these cards by simply lining their plastic wallets, with some aluminium cooking foil. which stops the embedded antenna loop from powering up the microchip. The same sort of protection is also needed for RFID "biometric" Passports.

There is also the practical issue of preventing accidental deductions of money from your Oyster card, by maladjusted or poorly maintained or hacked Card Readers. These are normally specially de-tuned to have an effective range of only a couple of centimetres. However , the radio equipment, in order to comply with the international standards and markets, is actually designed for Portals or Doorways i.e. a couple of metres range, even without illegal amplification.

There have been times when the narrow London Underground turnstyle gates have picked up signals from someone going through a gate on either side of them, thereby secretly deducting money from the prepaid card, even when someone has been using a paper ticket, and has had their Oyster card still in their pocket.

See Foiling the Oyster Card

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Using the Oyster Card, leaves a financial and time / location database transaction trail, which is used anonymously in bulk, to help Transport for London optimise their services.

However this data has been specifically exempted from the Data Protection Act 2000, by Ministerial fiat, under the previous Labour government, and is now handed over, "in bulk, in real time", together with the tens of thousands of CCTV surveillance camera live feeds or recordings, which infest the London Tube and Bus systems, to the Metropolitan Police Service, for mass surveillance database mining, in secret, for "suspicious" travel patterns. This sweeps up the innocent travel patterns and other data of millions of innocent people, as well as the alleged "terrorist suspects" which justify this policy.

However, some "cyberpunks" etc., have for years, been trying to frustrate this sort of "Big Brother" snooping on individuals, by regularly swapping their Oyster cards with friends or acquaintances, something which does not affecting the legitimate aggregated, anonymised bulk travel pattern data uses, which Transport for London might need to improve their services to the public.

Zero History - Drop Book @ Caffe Nero, Seven Dials, London

The William Gibson Discussion Board (WGB), members who met up for the Forbidden Planet book signing on Saturday 9th October 2010, decided to annotate a signed copy of Zero History as a "Drop Book".

We chose Caffè Nero at Seven Dials, London, which is where Milgrim is photographed by DCIS Agent Winnie for the Drop.

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Within a few seconds of the Drop, it was snapped up by a member of the public called Tammy, who had recently purchased a copy of Spook Country in order to catch up with her reading of William Gibson's works, so it went to an ideal first reader.

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Hopefully she will feed back some comments either here or to the other annoted URLs, and will then pass the book on to someone else.

On Tuesday 5th October 2010, at Foyles, in London, William Gibson read Zero History Chapter 16. Honor Bar, where Milgrim and Special Agent Winnie Tung Whitaker, of the Department of Defence, Office of the Inspector General, Defence Criminal Investigative Service "DCIS" agree to communicate electronically using a couple of (already registered and real) Twitter accounts

He mentioned that few people so far amongst the fans and critics on this book tour had asked about Winnie, perhaps, he speculated, because she is one of the few characters in his writings who is not a freelancer (or a billionaire), has a bureaucratically constrained job and has children to support.

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Given how popular William Gibson's previous reading / signing events in London have been, it is perhaps not a surprise that this forthcoming event for Zero History is much more expensive than the ones held at the TUC Congress hall, for Pattern Recognition and Spook Country:

William Gibson on 'Zero History' in conversation with Cory Doctorow

Monday October 4th, 2010

Doors open at 6.15pm. The event will begin at 7.00pm and finish at 8.30pm.

Event Info

American-born William Gibson is one of the most acclaimed and successful writers of the last twenty years. He coined the phrase "cyberspace" and developed the concept in his bestselling first novel Neuromancer, creating an iconography for the Information Age long before widespread use of the Internet. His novels have moved gradually away from science fiction and futuristic work and now examine the strange contemporary world we inhabit.

Gibson will be talking about his life and work, and in particular his new book Zero History which is set largely in London and captures the paranoia and fear of our post-Crash times.

See this book review in The Spectator: Architect of cool

William Gibson and Cory Doctorow will be signing books after the event.

Cory Doctorow is worth the price of the ticket alone, let alone William Gibson !

Venue Info

Cadogan Hall

5 Sloane Terrace, London SW1X 9DQ, Tel: 020 7730 4500

Tube: Sloane Square
Bus Routes: 11, 19, 22, 137, 211, 319, 360 C1

Cadogan_Hall_gsv_450.jpg

Ticket Prices:

As William Gibson tweeted:

https://twitter.com/GreatDismal/status/19634410839

London: the expensive seats http://bit.ly/9UTvu5

Tue Jul 27 05:49:47 +0000 2010

Ticket Type  Price
Stalls  £25.00
Gallery  £20.00
Student  £9.50

Readers of this Zero History blog are entitled to a 25% Discount

Quote this Discount Code: gib50n
i.e. with a numeric five and a zero

Booking form: William Gibson on 'Zero History' in conversation with Cory Doctorow

Or call Jo Marris on +44 207 792 4830

This event is organised by Intelligence Squared, who produce a glossy magazine and who hold televised and internet broadcast public debates .

Via William Gibson Board: october london gibson hacking 2010:

Tuesday 5th October, 6.30pm

William Gibson: Zero History

The Gallery at Foyles

He's known to many as the noir prophet, to others as the man who coined the term cyberspace. To us, he's the visionary behind Neuromancer, Spook Country and many of the most ground-breaking, world-shifting, mind-boggling SF inventions ever to land on our bookshelves. In a rare visit to the UK, he lands in our Gallery to take us to ever more unfathomable realms with Zero History. Not to be missed.

Tickets: free, email events@foyles.co.uk to reserve places

The Gallery at Foyles is at their main Charing Cross Road shop

113-119 Charing Cross Road, London, WC2H 0EB
Tel: +44 (0) 20 7437 5660
Fax: + 44 (0) 20 7434 1574

Foyles_gsv_450.jpg

Given how popular William Gibson's previous reading / signing events in London have been, it is perhaps not a surprise that this forthcoming event for Zero History is much more expensive than the ones held at the TUC Congress hall, for Pattern Recognition and Spook Country .

William Gibson on 'Zero History'

Monday October 4th, 2010

Doors open at 6.15pm. The event will begin at 7.00pm and finish at 8.30pm.

Event Info

'In terms of influence he is probably the most important novelist of the past two decades' Steven Poole, Guardian

American-born William Gibson is one of the most acclaimed and successful writers of the last twenty years. He coined the phrase "cyberspace" and developed the concept in his bestselling first novel Neuromancer, creating an iconography for the Information Age long before widespread use of the Internet. Count Zero and Mona Lisa Overdrive completed his first trilogy. He has written six further novels, moving gradually away from science fiction and futuristic work, instead writing about the strange contemporary world we inhabit.

Gibson will be talking about his life and work, and in particular his new book Zero History, which is set largely in London and captures the paranoia and fear of our post-Crash times.
close

Venue Info

Cadogan Hall

5 Sloane Terrace, London SW1X 9DQ, Tel: 020 7730 4500

Tube: Sloane Square
Bus Routes: 11, 19, 22, 137, 211, 319, 360 C1

However, as William Gibson tweeted:

https://twitter.com/GreatDismal/status/19634410839

London: the expensive seats http://bit.ly/9UTvu5

Tue Jul 27 05:49:47 +0000 2010

Ticket Type  Price
Stalls  £25.00
Gallery  £20.00

Cadogan Hall, a former church used for musical concerts etc., has a capacity of 900 or so in the main auditorium, so this is a big event, which should finance William Gibson's trip to London.

Cadogan_Hall_gsv_450.jpg

This event is organised by Intelligence Squared, who produce a glossy magazine and who hold televised and internet broadcast public debates . See this review by a Charles Moore, the former editor of The Daily Telegraph broadsheet newspaper:
The House of Commons no longer provides model debate
Charles Moore reviews Intelligence Squared, and laments the decline of proper parliamentary debate.

But of course the British interest in debate did not suddenly disappear. It was perhaps to answer the half-conscious sense of a vacuum that Intelligence Squared began. In 2002, its founders Jeremy O'Grady and John Gordon noticed that Lady Antonia Fraser filled the 750-seat hall of the Royal Geographical Society in Kensington with her talk about Marie-Antoinette. Why shouldn't they do the same, they wondered, with debates? They set up a company to achieve this.

As the title implies, the idea multiplies itself. Last year, Intelligence Squared ran 27 events. Frequently, there is such demand for the £25 tickets that they have to move out of the RGS to the more intimidating grandeur of Methodist Central Hall. Intelligence Squared has already licensed the use of its name in New York, Sydney, Kiev and Hong Kong, and is in the process of doing so in Nigeria and Brazil. It has a popular website on which films of the debates appear and written and weekly topical mini-debates can be found.

William Gibson will not, presumably, be debating anything, but this event and venue do show his increasing status as an important cultural icon in the United Kingdom, as elsewhere.

What else will William Gibson be doing between this Monday 4th October event and the Forbidden Planet Megstore book signing on Saturday 9th October 2010 ?

The hard core William Gibson Discussion Board fans from the UK and Europe will probably be mostly at the Saturday book signing.

october london gibson hacking 2010

Thanks again to Fashion Police, for spotting this before us:

Zero History book signing by William Gibson - Forbidden Planet, London, UK - Saturday 9th October 2010 13:00 - 14:00

Saturday 09 October 13:00 - 14:00
London Megastore

179 Shaftesbury Avenue, London, WC2H 8JR

Forbidden Planet is pleased to announce a signing by William Gibson. He will be signing his new novel ZERO HISTORY at the Forbidden Planet Megastore, 179 Shaftesbury Avenue, London, WC2H 8JR, on Saturday 9th October from 1 - 2pm.

Forbidden_Planet_bookshop_300.jpg

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Unlike the previous Spook Country book signing in 2007 (see William Gibson "Spook Country" signing and "Secure Beneath The Watchful Eyes" poster) which happened on a Wednesday, this event could be very busy on a Saturday.

About this blog

This is the ZeroHistory.net blog

Discussion and hyper link cloud enhanced literary criticism around the forthcoming new novel by cyber punk / literary fiction author William Gibson, which is currently in progress, and which is provisionally entitled Zero History.

See the Fragments of a Hologram Bill thread on the William Gibson Books discussion forum for the snippets of writing which have been released for discussion to the public so far.

Email Contact

Please feel free to email us your views about this website or news about the issues it tries to comment on:

blog @ ZeroHistory.net

If you have confidential information that you want to share with us, feel free to make use of our PGP public encryption key for blog @ ZeroHistory.net or an email account based overseas e.g. Hushmail

William Gibson's Twitter feed - GreatDismal

William Gibson is now a keen user of Twitter, rather than his now seemingly abandoned blog, so that is now the most likely place to find the latest news about his writing, or travels etc.

It is also the place to spot his occaisinal requests to his fans, for help with research on specific background details, some of which may, or may not, end up in the finished novel Zero History which he is currently working on.

William Gibson's Twitter stream - GreatDismal

"Zero History" hyperlink cloud annotation

For "Zero History", we aim to repeat the success of our collaborative "Spook Country" hyperlink cloud annotation - re-orderd into numerical Chapter sequence.

This has been commented on by the author William Gibson, and described by Emeritus Professor of English Literature John Sutherland as "the future of literary crticism"

Zero History blog & Node Magazine - hyperlink cloud literary criticism & annotation

Gabriel Hounds - Systemneustart

The German translation of Zero History is entitled Systemneutstart - "System Re-Boot"

A class of students at the Philipps-Universität Marburg in Germany, have a group blog, which analyses some of the themes of this novel which they call:

Gabriel Hounds

Spook Country blog

Spook Country blog - SpookCountry.co.uk - includes discussion and hyper link cloud enhanced literary criticism of William Gibson's previous novel Spook Country

London CyberPunk Tourist Guide

As part of the preparations for William Gibson book signing and lecture event promoting Spook Country in London, during August 2007, this "local knowledge" guide to places of interest to cyberpunk fans was compiled, and has been subsequently expanded.

London CyberPunk Tourist Guide - http://CyberPunk.org.uk

Please feel free to add comments or send emails, to keep it up to date.

Links

Wikipedia entry for William Gibson.

Official William Gibson Books website: www.williamgibsonbooks.com

Wiliam Gibson's blog post announcement What's in a name? of Zero History as the title of his new novel.

William Gibson's Twitter announcement of the Zero History title.

See the Fragments of a Hologram Bill thread on the William Gibson Books discussion forum for the snippets of writing which have been released for discussion to the public so far.

Campaign Buttons

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Campaign for the Freedom of Information

Gary McKinnon is facing extradition to the USA under the controversial Extradition Act 2003, without any prima facie evidence or charges brought against him in a UK court. Try him here in the UK, under UK law.
Free Gary McKinnon, who lives in London, is accused of hacking in to over 90 US military computer systems, and is facing extradition to the USA under the controversial Extradition Act 2003, without any prima facie evidence or charges brought against him in a UK court. Try him here in the UK, under UK law.

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FreeFarid.com- - Kafkaesque extradition of Farid Hilali under the European Arrest Warrant to Spain

Watching Them, Watching Us, UK Public CCTV Surveillance Regulation Campaign
Spy Blog - UK Public CCTV Surveillance Regulation Campaign

NO2ID Campaign - cross party opposition to the NuLabour Compulsory Biometric ID Card
NO2ID Campaign - cross party opposition to the NuLabour Compulsory Biometric ID Card and National Identity Register centralised database.

Peaceful resistance to the curtailment of our rights to Free Assembly and Free Speech in the SOCPA Designated Area around Parliament Square and beyond Parliament Protest blog - resistance to the Designated Area restricting peaceful demonstrations or lobbying in the vicinity of Parliament.

Petition to the European Commission and European Parliament against their vague Data Retention plans
Data Retention is No Solution Petition to the European Commission and European Parliament against their vague Data Retention plans.

Open Rights Group
Open Rights Group

Tor - the onion routing network
Tor - the onion routing network - "Tor aims to defend against traffic analysis, a form of network surveillance that threatens personal anonymity and privacy, confidential business activities and relationships, and state security. Communications are bounced around a distributed network of servers called onion routers, protecting you from websites that build profiles of your interests, local eavesdroppers that read your data or learn what sites you visit, and even the onion routers themselves." The WikiLeakS.org project makes use of Tor as part of their anonymity infrastructure.

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BlogSafer - wiki with multilingual guides to anonymous blogging

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NGO in a box - Security Edition privacy and security software tools

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Reporters Without Borders - Reporters Sans Frontières - campaign for journalists 'and bloggers' freedom in repressive countries and war zones.

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"Zero History" hyperlink cloud annotation

For "Zero History", we aim to repeat the success of our collaborative "Spook Country" hyperlink cloud annotation - re-orderd into numerical Chapter sequence.

This has been commented on by the author William Gibson, and described by Emeritus Professor of English Literature John Sutherland as "the future of literary crticism"

Zero History blog & Node Magazine - hyperlink cloud literary criticism & annotation

Zero History Cover Art

Zero_History_amazon_150.jpg

Zero History blog Cover Art category archive

Zero_History_UK_cover_art_150.jpg

Systemneustart_cover_150.jpg German edition: Systemneustart approximates to "System Re-boot"

Recent Comments

  • Mark Fudge: Foyles sold out already - that kinda of sucks... read more
  • Memetic Engineer: William Gibson describes this "otakublog" as "actually very useful" http://twitter.com/GreatDismal/status/11107753199 Zero History otakublog http://bit.ly/avsZpn This sort of thing is becoming read more
  • Memetic Engineer: William Gibson corrects his previous tweet: http://twitter.com/GreatDismal/status/11103336804 Correction: 641 ms. pages. Forgot and left part of beginning of book on read more
  • Memetic Engineer: William Gibson has now finished the manuscript, according to this tweet: http://twitter.com/GreatDismal/status/11067870492 Zero History completed. 644 ms. pages, which is read more
  • Memetic Engineer: @ Joe Parrish - thanks for spotting that ! I have posted the details as a blog article. read more
  • Joe Parrish: You probably know this but at the Putnam sight in there fall adult catalog on pages 14 and 15, 15 read more
  • Memetic Engineer: custom Jankel-armored Toyota Hilux with Israeli nano-glass windows http://twitter.com/GreatDismal/status/9610309225 @ceesaxp Bigend is currently driving a custom Jankel-armored Toyota Hilux with read more
  • Memetic Engineer: @ Caplewood - thanks for spotting the Amazon.com publication details for Zero History I shall keep an eye out for read more
  • Caplewood: Amazon lists the publication date for Zero History as September 7, 2010. read more
  • Caplewood: . . .much less otaku like, than your obscured /shortened link to the Google translation of the Japanese Wikipedia article. read more

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