Privacy

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Here are the web links I’ve found for 22 May 2009 to 27 May 2009, posted automatically.

  • The Age of the Essay | Paul Graham: This essay dates from 2004, but it’s still valid. The essay, the kind that’s about exploring an issue, is a natural form of writing online. Plus I like his comments about disobedience and creativity.
  • GLAM | Wikimedia Australia: One for your diaries! A little conference called “Galleries, Libraries, Archives, Museums & Wikimedia: Finding the common ground” at the Australian War Memorial, Canberra, 6-7 August 2009. Hosted by Wikimedia Australia, with discussions on four themes: Education, Technology, Business, Law. To be opened by Senator Kate Lundy, Senator for the ACT.
  • That 180ms is the bane of my life: Network engineer Glen Turner explains why the 180 milliseconds it takes for Internet data to cross the Pacific causes problems. “You’ve got to realise that Australia is almost unique in being a long way from the centre of gravity of its language. Broadly, almost all German-speakers live in Germany, whereas a tiny proportion of English-speakers live in Australia. That has an effect on Internet traffic. Most Internet traffic in Germany stays within Germany. Most Internet traffic in Australia goes offshore.”
  • One thing PC users can do that Mac users can’t…: Crude but effective.
  • Media and Brand Supremacy: Why the New Media Brand Could Be Nike | The Huffington Post: Heidi Sinclair notes that individual journalists and commentators are sometimes bigger news brands than the outlets they work for. There’s plenty here which meshes with my complains that some folks don’t separate the content (“news”) from the container (“newspapers”).
  • texts from last night: A scarily funny collection of people’s (allegedly) drunken text messages. Don’t click through unless you’ve got plenty of time to spare.
  • Death in Birth – Where Life’s Start Is a Deadly Risk | NYTimes.com: The first of three articles on efforts to lower the death rate in Tanzania. Excellent timing, given Project TOTO. Challenging to read, however
  • The Angelina Factor | Bitchy Jones’ Diary: A ranty article which, in language which may be confronting for some, explores the social and psycho-sexual issues around the idea that Angelina Jolie is universally sexually attractive. Just for the record, I do not find her the least bit attractive.
  • Rethinking the Global Money Supply: Scientific American: China has proposed that the world move to a more symmetrical monetary system, in which nations peg their currencies to a representative basket of others rather than to the US dollar alone. The article includes a little history, too.
  • “We did not know that child abuse was a crime,”says retired Catholic archbishop | the freethinker: The retired Catholic Archbishop of Milwaukee, Rembert G Weakland, says “We all considered sexual abuse of minors as a moral evil, but had no understanding of its criminal nature… [I] Accepted naively the common view that it was not necessary to worry about the effects on the youngsters: either they would not remember or they would ‘grow out of it’.” WTF?
  • Comedy Thrives in Times of Despair | Spiegel Online: Monty Python’s Michael Palin on what the financial crisis is a boon for comics, and the perils of political correctness.
  • Hello Africa | Vimeo: A 42-minute documentary about mobile phone culture in Africa.
  • Shell On Trial | newmatilda.com: Next week, Shell will appear before a US federal court on charges of torture, extra-judicial killing and crimes against humanity for incidents which took place in the Niger Delta. Will it be the first multinational found guilty of human rights abuses?
  • Genital warts take Shoaib out of Twenty20 World Cup | ABC News: There was a time when someone’s medical history was considered private, even if they played sports professionally. Personally, I reckon the specific of Shoaib’s medical problem are none of anyone else’s business.
  • PlugComputer Community: The developer community for Marvell’s Plug Computer.
  • Plugging In $40 Computers | NYTimes.com: Marvell Technology Group has created a “plug computer”. A tiny plastic box you plug into an electric outlet. No display, but Gigabit Ethernet and a USB. Inside is a 1.2GHz processor running Linux, 512MB RAM and 512MB Flash memory. US$99 today, probably under US$40 in two years.
  • Misguided middle-class moaners | BusinessDay: Ross Gittins explodes a few myths about Australia, class, taxation and social welfare.

Stilgherrian’s links for 05 April 2009 through 07 April 2009, divided into groups according to their ease of use:

Stilgherrian’s links for 30 March 2009 through 04 April 2009, gathered with the assistance of pumpkins and bees:

  • The Australian Sex Party: “The Australian Sex Party is a political response to the sexual needs of Australia in the 21st century. It is an attempt to restore the balance between sexual privacy and sexual publicity that has been severely distorted by morals campaigners and prudish politicians.”
  • Measuring the Information Society: The ICT Development Index 2009: Australia is ranked #14 based on figures from 2007. In 2003 it was at #13.
  • Ho Hum, Sweden Passes new anti File Sharing Legislation | Perceptric Forum: Tom Koltai’s analysis of that new Swedish law: It’ll make no difference long term.
  • As Sweden’s Internet anonymity fades, traffic plunges | Ars Technica: A new Swedish law that went into effect 1 April makes it possible for copyright holders to go to court and unmask a user based on an IP address. Sweden’s Internet traffic dropped 40% overnight.
  • Study: online sexual predators not like popular perception | Ars Technica: This survey rejects the idea that the Internet is an especially perilous place for minors, and finds that while the nature of online sex crimes against minors changed little between 2000 and 2006, the profile of the offenders has been shifting — and both differ markedly from the popular conception.
  • What Is Fail Whale?: The complete history of the Twitter’s error-bringing Fail Whale, along with all the art and craft it’s inspired to date.
  • Voda/Hutch merger rattles ACCC | ZDNet Australia: Australia’s competition watchdog tonight issued a strongly worded statement of concern that the proposed merger of mobile carriers Hutchison and Vodafone could lead to increased retail prices on mobile telephony and broadband services.
  • All the news that’s fit to tweet | guardian.co.uk: The Guardian has also announced a new 140-character commenting system. “You’ll never again need to wade through paragraphs of extended argument, looking for the point, or suffer the unbearable tedium of having to read multiple protracted, well-grounded perspectives on the blogs you love.”
  • Share This Lecture! | Viddler.com: Mark Pesce’s annual lecture for “Cyberworlds” class, Sydney University, 31 March 2009. About the significance of sharing across three domains: sharing media, sharing knowledge, and how these two inevitably lead to the sharing of power.
  • Twitter switch for Guardian, after 188 years of ink | The Guardian: One of the better April Fools’ Day pieces. I particularly like the extracts from the Twitterised news archive. 1927: “OMG first successful transatlantic air flight wow, pretty cool! Boring day otherwise *sigh*”
  • Flappers, wine, cocaine and revels (Pt II) | The Vapour Trail: A few hours after five Melbourne girls were arrested for vagrancy in late March 1928, the headline of Melbourne’s Truth broadcast their misdeeds: “White Girls with Negro Lovers. Flappers, Wine, Cocaine and Revels. Raid Discloses Wild Scene of Abandon”.
  • A Blacklist for Websites Backfires in Australia | TIME: Time‘s take on the leak of the Australian Internet censorship blacklist portrays it as a joke and a scandal. There are some factual errors in the story, but this looks like how it’ll end up being perceived internationally.

Stilgherrian’s links for 19 March 2009 through 29 March 2009, posted not-quite-automatically in a great lump for your weekend reading pleasure:

I really must think of a better way of doing this…

Stilgherrian’s links for 11 March 2009 through 18 March 2009, posted after considerable delay in some cases:

Here are the web links I’ve found for 08 March 2009 through 10 March 2009, posted with a thin layer of grease for protection against corrosion.

  • Who is Fake Stephen Conroy? Full list of Suspects. | Amnesia Blog: Speculation about who Fake Stephen Conroy really is. Are they getting warm?
  • How the US forgot how to make Trident missiles | The Sunday Herald: Plans to refurbish Trident nuclear weapons had to be put on hold because US scientists forgot how to manufacture a component of the warhead. Complex manufacturing process do need to be maintained.
  • Historically Bad Ideas in Software | Bex Huff: A great conversation-starter. Just because something sounds good in theory, in isolation, doesn’t mean it’ll be good value in the long run.
  • Privacy in the Age of Persistence | Schneier on Security: “Data is the pollution of the information age. It’s a natural byproduct of every computer-mediated interaction. It stays around forever, unless it’s disposed of. It is valuable when reused, but it must be done carefully. Otherwise, its after effects are toxic. And just as 100 years ago people ignored pollution in our rush to build the Industrial Age, today we’re ignoring data in our rush to build the Information Age.” Bruce Schneier has written about this before, but this is one of the tightest explanations I’ve seen.
  • How to Twitter | WSJ.com: One journalist’s first cut at explaining Twitter to a non-Twitter audience. I’m amused by the observation that you’ll get more followers if you actually say something. Well, yes.
  • Okay, this is going to hurt… | Winnipeg Free Press: One journalist’s take on the “controversy” following political blogger Policy Frog’s decision to do commentary in the “mainstream media”.
  • The Evolution of Life in 60 Seconds | YouTube: Exactly what it says. Personally, I’d have presented it with images rather than words. Maybe that’s a project for me for another time.

Stilgherrian’s links for 25 February 2009 through 02 March 2009, gathered with gin and joy.

  • Information Commissioner Richard Thomas warns of surveillance culture | Times Online: Laws that allow officials to monitor the behaviour of millions of Britons risk “hardwiring surveillance” into the British way of life, the country’s privacy watchdog has warned.
  • Porn in the USA: Conservatives are biggest consumers | New Scientist: “Some of the people who are most outraged turn out to be consumers of the very things they claimed to be outraged by,” says researcher Benjamin Edelman.
  • Chatham House Rule | Wikipedia: A rule for running a meeting where people can speak freely but their confidentiality is respected. The rule itself is: “When a meeting, or part thereof, is held under the Chatham House Rule, participants are free to use the information received, but neither the identity nor the affiliation of the speaker(s), nor that of any other participant, may be revealed.” The Wikipedia article gives the background.
  • Australian Internet Filtering Debate at Kickstart 2009 | Midnight Update: A video of the Internet Filtering debate at Kickstart 09 from the weekend, including Bernadette McMenamin from Child Wise, Anthony Pillion from Webshield, Geordie Guy from EFA, and Mark Newton. I’ll write more upon this later, maybe.
  • Internet Study 2007 | ipoque: A report on the impact of peer-to-peer (P2P) file sharing, Voice over IP, Skype, Joost, instant messaging, media streaming such as YouTube, from a traffic point of view.

Stilgherrian’s links for 31 January 2009, arranged by intensity of floral attitude:

  • Twittering away standards or tweeting the future of journalism? | Reuters Blogs: Reuters News editor David Schlesinger tweets from Davos, beats his own news wires, and then blogs about the experience. If Twitter is changing journalism, his response is “Bring it on!”
  • The LEGO Turing Machine | YouTube: The Turing Machine was a hypothetical computing device created by Alan Turing in 1936 to explain basic theoretical concepts in computing. While very simple, a Turing Machine is mathematically equivalent to any other general purpose computer, if slower. So, these guys have built one using LEGO Mindstorms components. The video has a bonus soundtrack via The A-Team.
  • A radical idea: Charge people for your product | 37signals: The blog post is from November 2008, but the message is current given all the media flutter about Twitter — which has yet to earn a single dollar of revenue. Need income? Um, charge for your product!
  • FORA.tv: “Videos Covering Today’s Top Social, Political, and Tech Issues.” I haven’t checked them out properly yet, so this is really a reminder to self.
  • GoodBarry: These guys provide an integrated “Software as a Service” (SaaS) system for small business, covering eCommerce, content management (CMS), customer relationship management (CRM), email marketing and analytics. All hooked together, and all at good prices. I’m checking them out for a client.
  • Life Matters’ Mandatory Internet Filter Transcript | Off Topic with Ashley: An unofficial transcript of ABC Radio National’s Life Matters program with network engineer Mark Newton and Jim Wallace, Managing Director of the Australian Christian Lobby.
  • Mandatory internet filter | ABC Life Matters: On Thursday, ABC Radio National’s Life Matters interviewed network engineer Mark Newton and Jim Wallace, Managing Director of the Australian Christian Lobby. Audio available for download.
  • The Economy According To Mint | TechCrunch: Mint is an online accounting system for consumers. Tracing their 900,000 customers through 2008 shows how their spending patterns have changed as the Global Financial Crisis worsens.
  • Labor’s “deafening silence” as web censorship trials delayed | theage.com.au:
  • Newspapers Saw the Digital Train A-Coming | Advertising Age: Bradley Johnson points out that the newspapers themselves were exploring digital delivery of news in the 1980s, but failed to do anything about it in terms of reviewing their business models.
  • OpenNet Initiative: “ONI’s mission is to identify and document Internet filtering and surveillance, and to promote and inform wider public dialogs about such practices.”
  • The Unmistakable Smell Of Decay | newmatilda.com: With the NSW Labor zombie army smelling worse all the time, party hacks are considering swapping their front-line cadaver, writes Bob Dumpling.

Stilgherrian’s links for 20 January 2009 through 24 January 2009:

  • VPNOut: “VPNOut provides secure and anonymous VPN access that can break through firewalls.” And past censorship.
  • Apple’s 1987 Knowledge Navigator Video | YouTube: A remarkable “concept video” looking at how we might use computers and the Internet in “the future”, i.e. now.
  • EGovernment nets most callers: survey | PS News: A Department of Finance and Deregulation survey has found more Australians now contact the Government via the internet than they do by phone or in person.
  • Cursebird: What the f#@! is everyone swearing about?: Apparently on Twitter I swear “like a George Carlin Wannabe”. I’m ranked 355th in the world, putting me in the very top percentile. I wonder what the stats would look like for Australians only?
  • 7 Steps To Build A Startup From Scratch With No Money | YoungEntrepreneur.com Blog: What it says.
  • Dark Dungeons | Chick Publications: This book from a well-established evangelistic Christian publisher, points out the evils of role-playing game Dungeons & Dragons.
  • Obituary: Sir John Mortimer | guardian.co.uk: Geoffrey Robertson’s obituary of Sir John Mortimer, creator of fictional lawyer Rumpole of the Bailey and a decent lawyer in his own right. Apparently in his youth Mortimer “encountered with interest the bookshop-owning lesbians who had taken opium with Cocteau, and a prim, elderly lady who had, in her youth, urinated regularly upon pioneering sexologist Havelock Ellis.” Goodness me.
  • Schapelle Corby Tour: “My name is Eddie Hutauruk and I have been running tours in Bali for over 8 years. Schapelle Corby Tours is our latest venture, and is fully respectful of Schapelle and her situation… Schapelle Corby is a convicted Australian drug runner, and my tours allow people to see Schapelle in her cage at Kerobokan Prison in Bali. Tours can be arranged for most days of the week and pick-up is possible from most Bali hotels.” Very clever.
  • Folk Devils and Internet Safety | Daithí mac Sithigh’s blog on cyberlaw & media law: Another view on the report of the Internet Safety Technical Task Force which said, amongst other things, that the risks of bullying online are far more important that worrying about the rare instances of adults soliciting for sex.
  • A chat with Fake Stephen Conroy | ZDNet Australia: What is says. Rather amusing, I reckon. And no, I am not Fake Stephen Conroy. But I have my suspicions about who it really is…

Stilgherrian’s links for 26 August 2008 through 30 August 2008, collected using a fine-meshed net and a spoon:

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