Poems from The Palms

SpiderLabs gathered for its annual meeting in Las Vegas recently. Though no poet laureate as people don't generally pay for poetry until the author is decomposing, I would like to share the following which was inspired during the event and that I hope paints a picture of the influence of technology and insecurity upon the times we live in. Though the fabric of reality is unchanging and immutable, our malleable perceptions are under constant flux from influences both within and without which, in turn, change our individual realities as they are buffeted by the march of progress.

The clock struck one all right,
Whilst on a circuit some digital JavaScript based countdowns expired,
And SpiderLabs appeared in its flesh from threads of a flight,
Some closer to home and some others incredibly tired.

I'm glad to see that so called "actual reality" has a place,
Beyond keeping our bodies encased as a jack into virtual hacker space.
One zero one one zero one one,
No more; photonic kinetics are the reason for some:
See one another into the light and discover a brotherhood -
Spiders are Fun.

What's the rest of the reasons we are all near,
Beyond face recognition and bars and the beer,
It's not for the money that much is clear -
It's fairly expensive to send us all here.
And WebEx speaks PowerPoint just as sincere.

Changing rhythm deliberately consciously,
Just like the sea of insecurity,
Choppy and awash,
Making our living from a chorus of "You managed that? Gosh",
This client perplexity rhymes with complexity;
Can you repeat that again whilst you're sitting next to me?

Some of this stuff is for rules and the ticks;
This arm is 11.3 and this other there's for 6.6
(Of the PCI for the newcomers for whom that passed them by),
But that isn't all I espy -
The President (Obama that is) declared1 this very July in the Wall Street Journal,
"We need some comprehensive legislation,
To prevent a future where hacker's cause a financial crisis,
Or cripple the core of this great nation"
Seems like the bug's in the Kernel to me,
What are we gonna do about it, well...

Henderson has framed his fame,
Up in the air hugging scotch next to Jack B;
Percoco is on the TV whilst Stevey O is on the front page of
Black Hat - that's just three - but looks to me like we're more than eighty.


A group of people don't have to share intelligence to amass en masse,
They can be obsessed with a singularity - part of a picture and by its own, crass,
And so crowded similar to a dumb moving boulder,
A smashing great juggernaut shoulder to shoulder.
We try to break free individually as we get older,
As violence and anger feels increasingly colder.
There is new violence now in a new age -
A violence of counterintuitive functionality,
That necessitates a hacker space of minds that can keep apace,
Of this accumulative information race.

iPhone iCrazy,
Declared News Week this week,
We're all pushing up the daisies of our prior sanity,
Checking devices these Internet vices
Changed the state of our brains to psychosis apparently.

Now Stuxnet and Flame knock at the door,
Nation states refrain to claim they might be to blame,
I think the militaries boot's in the game.
Microsoft apologies for boobs in its code,
Siemens releases a patch,
People are tweeting,
Our conscious attention on substance depleting,
Replaced with a database of what people like,
Teenagers texting dependant on phones
Instead of cycling on bikes and talking at home.

Are y'all still with me?
Make no mistake - the day may come for our armed protection,
Something serious is at stake.
In the ever-increasing connectivity,
Space is less on our minds than it used to be.
It isn't only for the money we're all here;
This is an army and we're soon the soldiers on the front line:
A new beginning where light sabres are real packets of matter
Forged in this furnace of errors,
Plasters piercing our failed comprehension:
All of a sudden we have their attention

Help us! We cannot go back to paper and safes;
Your electron copier fired its contents literally into outer space.
Integrity's damaged through duplication,
The secrets of the nation are every which where,
What's in YOUR wallet that you can share?
RFID got the better of thee?
Come have a sip of this remedy -
They call it "Security" we call it "Work",
That's this years' two pence,
Just functional quirks.

July 26th-29th, 2012.

1 The words of the President were interpreted with poetic license and not quoted verbatim.


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