Big tech firms

The Big Tech firms are dividing the world between them

To look upon a freshly painted wall is to behold a smooth surface; to look at it through a magnifier is to see a rough and irregular landscape — but turn the magnification up sufficiently and see it become regular again, a geometric matrix of atoms held in molecular bonds. Keep magnifying and you enter the unimaginably messy realm of the subatomic, a weird place of eldritch geometries and smeared-out, probabilistic motion. The world is smooth and rough, orderly and messy, all at once, depending on how closely you look. In The System, the journalist James Ball — a veteran of both WikiLeaks and the Guardian’s original Snowden team —