1 min read 💡 Just thinking
Wed 20 Dec 2023 Writing

2023 wrap up: Jan's favourite project

Jan shares his thoughts about the Digital Security Training we facilitated for Tipping Point.
Portrait of Jan

Favourite project from this year?

So many to pick from! But also, a lot of my time in 2023 was spent on a for-now confidential infrastructure project and I am really proud of the work we did on it. Learning React Native, leveraging my SQL knowledge and thinking about data at scale, mobile UX, medium-term product development with a small, consistent, international team — great fun.

But more recently, I guess I would actually say: the Tipping Point UK digital security training programme!

Tipping Point UK is an infrastructure org which supports the climate justice movement in the UK through networking, training, support and resourcing — including free digital tooling for action groups.

Banner image for the Digital Security Training

If we consider that the Common Knowledge project is pedagogical, infrastructural and movement-based, then building out a year-long educational programme on digital technology for the climate movement feels like one of our most on-mission projects at the moment. That energises me without end.

Alex has been leading on training session design and delivery and I’ve been a step removed stewarding the project — handling admin, facilitating debriefs, dates, budgets, and so on. It’s been great to work on educational materials together, chipping in with observations and seeing how the sessions evolve through Alex’s skilful and knowledgeable attention. And it’s fascinating to zoom out and consider the co-design and delivery of a multimedia syllabus and training programme.

Goals for the training

On a political-technical level, digital security is an incredibly important challenge for the movement to get to grips with. We are living out an eco-fascist timeline where unbelievably powerful agents of the state and capital have essentially eradicated our physical privacy and have an incredibly strong grip on the internet too.

Even tools like Tor are not infallible through global surveillance of the web and simple user mistakes. It has been challenging to confront this reality so comprehensively and the implications for brave, passionate, conscientious yet vulnerable comrades in the movement, who risk so much to challenge destructive power.

We’ll be continuing on the programme in 2024!

Risk matrix

Can you share a tip/tool/learning from this year that has work well for you?

This is trivial, perhaps, but the new Arc Browser has changed my internet life!

Juggling lots of projects and interests is a sure-fire way of generating browser tab hell and Arc has fantastic design solutions for this.

They’ve turned your bog standard tab bar into a sidebar and allowed you to build up multiple ‘spaces’. By default, new tabs opened in a space will close after a day so you never build up clutter, and if you plan to come back to some tabs you can make them a permanent feature of the space by ‘pinning’ them.

You can even assign different user profiles to different spaces — so my work logins and my personal logins are nicely separated, which helps a bunch when you’re trying to turn off.

It’s free and you can download it for Mac right now and it’ll be out on Windows in January 2024.