Listen: Episode 36
Technolotics #36 – A Dose of Genius
Listen: Episode 36
Listen: Episode 36
Listen: Episode 35
Listen: Episode 34
Listen: Episode 33
Article by Daniel Berninger on GigaOM website.
Argues that net neutrality refers to “the uses of the Internet not the quality of access”.
Already a large number of classes of service available from the telcos, you pay for the performance and capacity of your Internet access.
The telcos have in mind creating another kind of customer, charging for the right of transit.
Technology already exists to examine packets at the routers.
Kills innovation as the ability to charge per application allows telcos to block technologies such as VOIP from ever getting a foothold.
Allowing telcos this kind of control allows them to make more money while providing nothing new.
Intellectual Property Protection Act of 2006 will expand the copyright restrictions of the DMCA.
Will also expand federal police wiretapping and enforcement powers.
Attempted copyright infringement would become a federal crime punishable by up to ten years in prison.
This is more time in prison for those who download child pornography.
Will make it a crime to “make, import, export, obtain control of, or possess” software that can bypass DRM systems.
Amazingly it will allow copyright holders to impound “records documenting the manufacture, sale or receipt of items involved in” infringements.
According to the EFF this is a Godsend for the RIAA as they can demand server records.
EFF’s “Unintended Consequences” report exposes further issues with the basic DMCA which obviously will only become worse.
One issue is that Sony’s DRM rootkit software may not have been publicized because it exposed the people who discovered it to litigation by Sony.
Vista was first unveiled on in October 2003 it still isn’t here.
Worse many features have come and gone, promises made and broken time and time again.
Writer points the finger of blame at a mindset of establishing market dominance at any cost as the root of the problem.
Bill Gates is seen as the epitomy of this philosophy and all that is wrong with Microsoft.
Some of the wonderful things we have to look forward to in Vista are.
User Account Protection
Meant to prevent even administrators from carrying out dangerous actions that could harm the system.
Actually annoys the user with continuous popup warnings regarding simple actions.
Vista’s touted transparent windows.
You can’t tell which Window currently is at the top (i.e. has focus)
Tv and multimedia interface software that’s not integrated into Vista and not a standalone product.
Simply it doesn’t follow the same UI structure of previous versions, is ugly and confusing.
Interesting point made by John C. Dvorak, IE is also a disaster and chews up a lot of Microsoft’s attentions.
IE is linked to the OS and is the source of many of the security problems.
Dvorak urges MS to drop IE and concentrate on making a working OS.
Might not be a bad idea considering how slow Vista is taking to get to market.
Paul Thurott’s Supersite for Windows
The Great Microsoft Blunder
New downloadable program from Google that allows the creation of 3D objects.
Integrates into Google Earth, so you can see what your 3D object would look like in the world.
Buildings such as the Whitehouse are available and can be edited.
SketchUp comes in 2 versions, Pro and Free.
This is the first time that Google has offered software in this form.
Apple application for a patent for dual monitor/image capture device.
Image capture devices placed in between each pixel.
Overall image produced as amalgum of images from each device.
Acts as both a monitor and camera.
Aim is to make videoconferencing etc. easier
Camera is always present.
User looks directly at the camera.
Eerie similarity to the viewing screens in 1984.
Also raises serious security issues, zombie machine can be used to spy on others.
Top 20 Fake 
Jeff Bridges Blog 
The Soul Exchange 
I used to believe 
Listen: Episode 32
Social bookmarking phenomena Digg is in trouble this week, after being accused of the blogosphere’s greatest sin – censorship
Slashdot have posted a story – in Taco’s mangled grammer ‘submitted so numerous that I had little choice but to post’ – accusing dig of a variety of heinous crimes
It’s the system man!
Forever Geek Story
Kevin Rose’s Responce
Another ‘Digg bullying’ example
Ars Technica have an article on the Internet culture wars – the RIAA vs the EFF
Elektra v. Barker – one of the thousands of frivolous RIAA lawsuits – if the RIAA win, the repercussions could undermine the very nature of the internet.
RIAA state sharing a folder constitutes infringement – even if files are never accessed
RIAA attempting fundamental changes to copyright law through courts
RIAA is argue copyrighted uploads to P2P infringe as much as downloads
Current law: to “distribute” a copyrighted work – physical exchange of a material object must take place – law doesn’t take account of the digital distribution of copyrighted works.
Ars Technica say – ironically EFF are arguing for pre-internet disribution model
We say – hooey – this mearly points out the absurity of applying arbitary legal weight of theft to duplication => makes sence from a commercial perspective, insanely fascistic if actually applied on individual scale => this is not how information works
Ars Technica – The RIAA vs the EFF
HDMI is a technology that restricts the availability of high-def TV content.
Devices carry out a HDCP handshake before sending HD video over a connection.
Handshake authenticates devices & computes secret key for encrypting video between them
Each HDCP device is given two things: a secret vector, and an addition rule (not secret.)
A device uses it’s own vector and the other device’s addition rule to compute the secret key.
Vector and key are set so that both devices end up with the same key.
Problem is that conspiring devices can break the system and discover the secret vectors, thereby impersonating any HDCP device.
They came up with their own rather than using established handshake protocols such as Diffie-Hellman.
Reason for custom protocol seems to be to accomodate reduced computational ability, protocol is a simplified and less secure version of Diffie-Hellman.
Freedom to tinker
Diffie Hellman Key Exchange
This is a question we tacked back in show 2
Do folksonomy sites like Wikipedia lead to a better ‘infosphere’, or just a noiser and more confusing media landscape
WikiTruth (wikitruth.info) charts the inner machinations of wikipedia.
Creators of the website (who claim to be wiki admins) say the increasing banality of entries and decrease in the quality is self-inflicted.
Essentially, the more edits by more people is decreasing the quality of the information.
Problems with the homogenity of information,
Diverse views become suppressed, denying the viewer the ability to see an issue from multiple viewpoints.
Options for the administrators include restricting access.
This risks driving away contributors.
Raises the question of whether traditional sources such as encylopedia Britannica are better due to an editing process.
Acerbic comments from Lore Sjöberg
Scientists are concentrating on restoring sight to blind people.
Daniel Palanker, a physicist at Stanford University in California has created a bionic eye.
Dead cone and rods are bypassed and the cells of the inner retina are stimulated with electrical signals directly.
Dr Palanker believes the system will provide a human user with 20/80 vision, enough to read large fonts and recognise faces.
The Berkeley Lower Extremity Exoskeleton (Bleex) fits along a user’s legs and allows the carrying of 90Kgs with no strain on the user.
Made up of 40 sensors, a hydraulics system and a central controller that decides how to distribute the weight so the user feels none of it.
Modern artificial hands, give wearers a better quality of life but they have little of the functionality of the real hands they replace.
William Craelius of Rutgers University in New Jersey has developed Dextra.
System can be trained to recognise muscle movements in user’s arm and then carry out a corresponding action.
Dextra can control up to three fingers, one user even could play the saxaphone with it.
Future work will concentrate on many types of hand motion – grasping a key, opening a door, holding a hammer.
Bush will attack Iran
Because it’s about the dumbest thing he could do.
It’s geographically 3 times larger.
It’s population is approximately 3 times larger.
Population is a military strategists dream: a large number of fighting age men ~ 18 million with few very old or very young.
The failure to “win hearts and minds” in Iraq when you are replacing somebody like Saddam is not much encouragement that it can be achieved in Iran.
It will be another muslim country invaded within a few short years.
Iran has strong links to terrorism.
Shia Islam is the state religion, an attack on the country may be used by terrorists to claim the US is attacking Islam.
Current rumours indicate that the US will carry out airstrikes and limited special ops raids on the nuclear sites to disable them.
This may be difficult as the sites are spread thoughout the country to make such a task more difficult.
Special Op’s Troops are already on the ground
Airforce planners drawing up target list
Disagreement between Europe and US over how long it would take for Iran to build a bomb
Bush’s white house refer to Irans president Mahmoud Ahmadinejad as another hitler – clearly violating Godwins Law
‘Saving Iran’ will be Bush’s legacy
Administration purport to believe – “a sustained bombing campaign in Iran will humiliate the religious leadership and lead the public to rise up and overthrow the government.”
Only alternative administration will consider – campaign of coercion
“The real issue is who is going to control the Middle East and its oil in the next ten years.”
administration wants to change to power structure of Iran
senate is being selectively briefed on the plans
no one is ‘really objecting’
Special Op’s on the ground would be needed to knock out nuclear and chemical factories
Administration considering ‘tactical use’ of nuclear weapons
Joint Chiefs of staff want to take nukes of the table – administration refuses
Pentagon advisor – “The problem is that the Iranians realize that only by becoming a nuclear state can they defend themselves against the U.S. Something bad is going to happen.”
Case for a near and present danger is being built on unreliable evidence – A. Q. Khan, the so-called father of the Pakistani atomic bomb
I.A.E.A – Iran 5 years from bomb – “the Iranians want confrontation, just like the neocons on the other side”
“there’s nothing the Iranians could do that would result in a positive outcome. American diplomacy does not allow for it.”
Flynt Leverett (european diplomat) – Europeans want sanctions & diplomacy – US & Isreal want bombs – “There may be a military option, but the impact could be catastrophic.”
Who is the rogue regieme here? The ones who want a bomb, or the ones who want to use the bomb?
How will Russia and China react to an attack on Iran – nuclear or conventional
What chaos will erupt, if the heart of the muslin world is invaded (remember ‘regime change’) by a western millenarian christian conservative nation
New Yorker Article
Justin Gauvin excellent blog
International Atomic Energy Agency
FYI, not sure if Rowan mentioned this – but the creator of comment cast Robin Blandford is his cousin
LASIK@Home is a joke site
Negative Pimp – Freaky Ajax Hell Hive 7
Mark Echo Tags Airforce One  – or does he 
The iPod Box, MS Style 
Quake3 in a browser 
Poetrymagazines.org.uk – huge searchable archive of a variety of British poetry magazines 
David Elsewhere (worlds best dancer) 
Listen: Episode 31
Intel macs now officially run Windows
Macs get mainstream – All silicon valley geeks must have PowerBooks (except me)
How will OSX cope with the competition – Who will reboot?
The hardcore will stay for the unix backend
But Mac enthusiasts already talking about a no-windows-booting pledge
Sun Microsystems has proposed, with its DReaM initiative open source DRM.
Central idea is to assign rights to users not devices, hence rights can follow user across devices allowing access to DRMed media from a multitude of devices.
Lawrence Lessig approved Sun’s plan apparrently because they have with the Creative Commons to support their licences.
However: Sun’s DReaM “Usage Scenarios” document says that its fair-use mechanism is purely optional for rights holders.
No obligation on copyright holders to support fair use.
who would certify the players, and what would block the non-certified players from playing DReaM-protected content, that is still not clear.
Not all are happy with Sun’s scheme: ‘I wish Sun would figure out a way to let me do less with my music and movies,'” Cory Doctorow.
EFF makes the point that “open” and “royalty-free” DRM doesn’t make it any less capable of restricting the public’s rights under copyright.
LASIK@Home was founded in 2004 by Dr. Amir Khadim, M.D., Ph.D.
Key to the system is the Scal-Pal™ Scanning Adjusting Laparascopic Personal Laser.
Contains two lasers: first laser cuts a small flap in the cornea of your eye. Then the second laser vaporizes a tiny section of the lens without damaging the surrounding tissue.
Claim that “LASIK@Home is 100% safe” is a little hard to believe, especially for what it does.
Normally such surgery costs thousands of dollars and is carried out by trained professional who have years of experience. Would you trust yourself and a piece of plastic and electronics to do as good a job?
Risks of Lasik surgery include: loss of vision
CoComment – http://www.cocomment.com/
only comments on posts you’ve commented on
only shows comments by other cocomment users
co.mments – http://co.mments.com/
lets you track any comments
Robin Blandford, final year DCU
leave comments on podcasts by phone, which are nicely wrapped up in an RSS feed
Phil Zimmermann’s (creator of PGP)newest encryption software, Zfone.
The fruit of 10 years trying give the world easy-to-use software to cloak internet phone calls.
Open source, currently in Beta.
uses the industry standard SIP protocol, so it will work with a number of clients.
It has been submitted to IETF for approval as an internet standard, and rumours exist that it is indeed good enough to beat the acres of computers under Fort Meade.
Question is whether it will be adopted widely or will Skype continue to dominate.
Skype uses their own closed-source, own proprietary protocols.
may end up being used by the paranoids and geeks.
riya – http://riya.com
launched publically a week ago after months of valley hype
recognizes common faces in your photos
You upload all your photos
it finds the faces automatically
then you train it by telling it who’s who
eventually it learns to recognize people and label them
you can search for other people’s photos of yourself (or whoever)
They employ lots of vision processing guys and plan to expand into more areas of image recognition
You can’t import all your photos from flickr yet
looks cool but haven’t used it yet
Can this level of technology beat the cutest kitten test? http://www.thepcspy.com/articles/security/the_cutest_humantest_kittenauth
better have a good supply of kitten photos and other animals to stop a brute force attack
Kleptones Latest Album
Shadow of the Colossus – PS2 game
Greg Apodaca’s Digital Portfolio
If you ever wondered how much photoshopping is used in glamour magazines then take a look at this… the skill of this guy is unbelievable! Nottie to hottie with a wave of his mouse!
How to pull an all-nighter
How to pull an all-nighter when you have that all important assignment due in the morning.
Link How to pull an all-nighter
Listen: Episode 30
Imelda Morton (former competitor and student)
Peter Benilov (creator of one of the pitbots)
Louise Crowe and Aoife Clohessy, (2nd level students)
Niall Donnelly (member of the WIT team which made it to the semi-finals)
John Barrett (member of the DIT team which came second with their bot Spinning-Banana)
Andrew Adams and Alan Morey (the winning team members from CIT with their bot Chuck Norris.)
Assisted with lights and camera: Mike Kiely.
Special Thanks To: Bernie Goldbach
Music: John Fleagle – Doon da Rooth (Available from Magnatunes), DJ Wurz – Irregulator (Available from CCMixer), Le Tigre – Fake French, Marc Kaschke – Remember the Name, DJ Dolores – Oslodum 2004, Wadealin – No Meaning No (Gold Teeth), Chuck B – Visciouslemurer
A New Law passed by the French Parliament will force any music purchased in an online store to be playable on hardware from a variety of manufacturers 
The legal change would legalise cracking DRM, and break apples holy marraige of iPod & iTunes
Leander Kahney writing on wired news  likens this strategy to Microsofts Embrace Extend Extinguish strategy of incompatibility and nonstandard flakey interfaces
If passed the law would be a huge victory for consumers
but likely also result in Apple dropping out of the French market
and labels refusing to lisence music for online distrobution
Only time will tell if the French parliament will follow through a force labels to distribute DRM free music online
As Wired point out such a law would have far reaching consequences
ideally preventing the sort of monopolistic behaviour that has allow Sky to build a monopoly in Ireland
and is leading cable companies to delete or restrict the recording of old shows from the clients PVRs
Rowan Nairn has developed an ultra impressive feed grazer
His OPod software – the first of its kind – points the way to a new method of browsing the web as feed
Gareth’s article on OPML & the future of the Web
Rowan Nairn’s Opod
Mechanical-Copyright Protection Society (MCPS) and the Performing Right Society (PRS) launch a
licensing scheme for music podcasters in the UK 
The terms of the liscence are onerous to say the least
10 seconds at start and end of the song must be obscured
music must not represent more than 80% of a programme
avoid revealing a cast’s musical content in metadata
Songs are charged at 1.5p per song per download or 12% of gross income – whichever is larger
Judge has taken a mother’s child from her after seeing photos of a SubGenius event.
Subgenius are an ironic Web religion dedicated to parodying and mocking actual religion
The judge in this trial was a strict catholic
Not only was the woman’s child taken – but the judge ordered (verbally) that she abstain from communicating about the case on the internet
The firm who defended Larry Flint on obscenity charges are defending her maternity rights
The culture wars have a new front line
Bartholomew’s notes on religion
You’re a man now dog
Geoffrey Chaucer Hath A Blog – Get your daily fix of middle english
Consumating – Indy Dating Site, with tags
Banned SouthPark Episode With Scientology
Listen: Episode 29
Movies / Television channels streamining instantly through any broadband connection up to 1080P resolution over the H.264 codec through best effort network – public internet 
The claim is HD can be distributed in real time on a 6 meg connection!
Works with existing broadband networks with no upgrades or changes.
Essentially is a middleware that promises to provide VOD, via push, pull or streaming.
uses multicast or unicast to reduce load on the backbone network.
How does it work in practice with a large user base? Unknown. As far as we know nobody has deployed this yet.
Finally the device cringley has been predicting?
Will it recieve the necessary studio support to succeed?
The Pirate Bay 
The MPAA’s latest sortie against filesharers has omitted one of the most prominent: The Pirate Bay.
Founded in 2003 by a group of Swedish file-sharing advocated the Pirate Bureau.
Site has provoked a file-sharing debate in Sweden and has even spawned a pro-piracy political party making a credible bid for seats in the Swedish parliament.
Sites immunity credited to the basic structure of the BitTorrent protocol. Servers provide only torrent files, which by themselves contain no copyright data — merely pointers to sources of the content.
MPAA spokeswoman Kori Bernards insists The Pirate Bay violates copyright laws around the world.”The torrent and torrent tracker is something that points people to various files that make up a copyright that is protected under the law.”
Laurence Lessig thinks an MSID might not be the worst idea 
The system effectively adds an “identity layer” to the Internet.
Hard to to falsify an identity and easy to verify your own.
Users’ computers will hold files called InfoCards that give encrypted sites access to authenticated information about the user.
When a Web site requests personal data, you choose whether to release that information, securely and with the verification of the card’s issuer.
Privacy fears addressed by the fact that the user decides what information is shared.
System is also open, it’s a protocol, implementable by many, not just Microsoft.
It will be distributed with Vista, MS’s new OS.
The first stage in extrasensory enhansement – elegant lowtech(ist) implementation of superhuman status 
Google office rumours get a boost 
It’s out of this world – sorry I couldn’t resist!
You can look down on the red planet with elevation, infra red, and visible views
And heres my least favourite (requires sound) 
Finally, a painless way to add live & recorded chat to any website
Simple put gabbly.com/thesiteyouwant – and begin chatting 
This is viral methinks
A funny thinkable cursor 
Hope for paraplegics and wanabe cyber people alike.
A user must wear a cap containing electrodes that measure electrical activity inside the brain
Cap works like an EEG.
Device can train itself to new users in about 20 minutes.
Microsoft have finally unveiled their origami project. Unsurprisingly its an ultra mobile PC.  
These will be even more mobile than the smallest of todays micro laptops
The Specs: 7′ screen, touch screen interface, 800grams approx,
Some models will have: gps, web cam, finger scanner, 40gig hard drives
The antisocial network 
20 of the most plausible scientific myths explained 
Our favourite – the five second rule is five seconds too long
Langer Land – What have the Brits done for us? 
Find Me Guilty – Vin Deisel Attempts to Act 
TV Go Home – Charlie Brookers mad masterpiece 
Convert to PDF 
View from the Sidewalk. 
Listen: Episode 28
A discussion of the democratizing impact of citizen media, distributed distrobution, folksonomy, podcasting, vidcasting and the future of news, entertainment and human communication
Buzzwords: Web2.0, emergent, folksonomy
Content Creation: Geocities -> Google Pagemaker
Media: NBC, Sky, Fox -> Indymedia, Channel 101, Revision3
Knowledge: Britannica -> Wikipedia
Productivity: WordPerfect -> Office -> Writely, Thinkfree, EyeOS
Blogging: Livejournal -> Blogger -> WordPress
Bookmarking: Bookmarks -> del.icio.us, furl
Homepage: Portals (yahoo etc) -> netvibes, pageflakes
Search: Altavista -> Google -> Technorati, Kosmix, Rollyo
Community: Six Degrees -> Orkut -> Myspace, Bebo, FaceBook
Storage: XDrive -> Ourmedia -> Google locker – infinite free personal storage
News: Slashdot, Google News -> Google Alerts, Newsvine , Digg
Collaboration: Usenet -> Mediawiki -> Wetpaint, WikiWyg
Kevin Kellys new work in progress – discusses the future of science
Kelly suggests potential near term advances in the scientific method
Some of the Tools Kelly suggests science may adopt
Compiled Negative Results – the recording and analysis of negative results
As things stand – only studys which find a significant result tend to be published – creating a significant ‘file drawer problem’ – and failing to uncover flaws in exisiting theory / paradigms
Triple Blind Experiments – experiments which occur ubiquitously, without the awareness of participants – raw data collection over masses of variables – allowing flexability of post hoc data analysis / study design
Combinatorial Sweep Exploration – sampling and analysis of randomly constructed massive samples of models of studied objects – e.g.: brute force attacks on the analysis of genomic structure – through modelled or constucted recombinations genotyping
Evolutionary Search – the evolution of a problem solution (e.g.: computer program, useful polypeptide) through iterative evolutionary simulation – ‘Wolfram science’
Deep Simulations – hypercomplex simulations of life systems – from weather patterns, to genomes, to animal brains
Wiki-Science – multiple author continuas work in progress leading edge discussion / papers
Kevin Kelly.org – The Technnium
Conn Ó Muíneacháin on the Sunday Business Posts article about Irish podcast consultancies
Doop – producing podcasts for the band whipping boy – , and Irish Emigrant magazine
Century Homes – have commissioned a series of podcasts for the construction industry
Digicast – plans sponsored casts like a tour of Dublin – have a proprietary download system
This is important – as caching makes it difficult to realistically judge podcast downloads
Digicast Podcasting Consultancy
Gdrive – googles theoretically unlimited storage solution has been confirmed 
More limited hacks – allowing use of gmail or goole pages storage for data back up are already available
The Power Glove 
The IT Crowd First Season 
Diggnation on Time 
Spore Gameplay Video 
House of Cosbys 
Google Calendar Screenshots 
Real Life Simpsons 
Listen: Episode 27
One journalist wondered just how easy it would be to create a biological WMD.
Scientists have always been skeptical that individuals or terrorist groups about the idea that individuals or small groups are capable of creating bioweapons.
In their opinion “A significant bioterror attack today would require the support of a national program to succeed”
Roger Brent, a geneticist who runs a California biotech firm, claimed in an unpublished paper that that genetically engineered bioweapons developed by small teams are a bigger threat than suitcase nukes.
There is a growing number of researchers claiming that advances in DNA-hacking technology have reached the point where an evil lab assistant with the right resources could create a bioweapon.
Anyone’s allowed to buy raw genetic material and lab equipment online and very few checks are carried out.
Experts believe that currently the expertise required to create a fully fledged bioweapon such as smallpox is beyond a lab technician.
However DNA synthesis is following a kind of accelerated Moore’s law—the faster and easier it gets, the faster and easier it gets.
If the current pace of biotech proceeds for another decade, cooking up a lethal bug will be as easy and cheap as building a Web site.
after-the-fact vaccines won’t stop a plague; they take months to develop and deploy.
the only option is a general-purpose virus detector and destroyer, which has yet to be invented.
Such a device would also do an enormous amount of good for routine health care and global disease possibly eliminating large lethal epidemics of infectious disease in our lifetime.
Publisher of the Mohamad Cartoons explains his reasoning
“cartoons in response to several incidents of self-censorship in Europe caused by widening fears and feelings of intimidation in dealing with issues related to Islam.”
Editor felt was a legitimate news story
Editor cited a half-dozen cases of self-censorship – freedom of speech vs. fear of confronting issues about Islam as the motivation for the cartoons.
Cartoons do not demonize or stereotype – those who have taken the religion of Islam hostage by committing terrorist acts in the name of the prophet have given it a bad name.
Editor noted: cartoons depict Jesus on the cross having dollar notes in his eyes and another with the star of David attached to a bomb fuse have not drawn the embassy burnings or death threats that the Mohammad cartoons have.
religious who demand we observe their taboos in public domain – not asking for our respect, but for our submission.
“I acknowledge that some people have been offended ….. But we cannot apologize for our right to publish material, even offensive material.”
aimed to provoke debate – hailed moderate Muslims who contributed to the debate about freedom of expression, freedom of religion and respect beliefs
success and failure – inspiring defences of freedom of speech vs. tragic demonstrations
paper has recieved numerous death threats – some of the cartoonists and staff in hiding
Article on Internetavisen Jyllands-Posten
Did all life evolve from Viruses?
Virus’s have typically been looked down upon their name comes from the Latin word for “poisonous slime”.
Virus’s are seen as evolutionary latecomers as they depend on organisms such as cells etc. to host them.
However the sheer number of new viruses (millions literally!) being discovered are painting a broader and more benign picture.
Scientists estimate that they have discovered and documented less than 1 percent of all the living things on the planet.But for every organism in that unidentified 99 percent, at least 10 times as many unknown viruses are thought to exist—the vast majority of which are harmless to life and yet integral to it.
The discovery of a new virus Mimivirus (because it mimics a bacterium) is so complex that The London Telegraph described it as, ” unlike anything else seen by scientists . . . that . . . it could qualify for a new domain in the tree of life.”
The complexity of Mimivirus indicates an ancient ancestor which may have been around when life was first emerging on Earth.
Virus’s seen traditionally as the bringers of death could see a new role, as one of the foundations of life.
Bloggers have to deal with comment spam etc. and it is a constant trade-off between reader convenience and effectiveness.
A company called clipperz is proposing a reputation based online system
This system requires the trust of the public in and the existence of an online identity bond merchant
The only conceivable companies which would have the trust – Microsoft, Ebay, Google
Could this be the more important feature of the proposed Google Wallet
The system clipperz propose is essentially
commenter gets unique trust token from identity merchant
blog confirms id – checks ‘rating’ with ID merchant
confirms or deletes comments – and provides feedback to merchant
Requires trusted identity merchant
Whom do you trust to watch all comments
Especially in the light of companies like google being more than williung to co-operate when governments seek access to email / posting etc
Open to campaigns of identity smear
Open to identity theft
Spam blog nets could support each other – unless id’s were linked to real world ID’s
Hired bloggers could still comment / spam for cash – spam would just be more targeted
Who will pay? Confirmation of real world id & fighting abuse would cost real cash – so ID’s would not be free
Even posting a dissenting opinion – especially in a contentious area – could lead to loss of reputation
Judging the reliability of a blogs feedback – how? Just moves the problem around
Anonymity from government / corporate surveilence
Identity providers have too much power – without central authority – they can dicatate you reputation / punish you for switching providers
Every identity bond merchant would have to co-operate
The market for fake / second hand reputations would be huge
The Ricky Gervais Podcast will be jump the gun of the yet to be enabled monetarised iTunes downloads – having signed an exlusive deal with audible.com
Shows will be available on iTunes as an audible partner
This will be the first experience most users have with the nefarious world of DRM
The shows will be available for the price of $7 per month (or as part of an audible.com subscription) – monsterously high when compared to Satellite packages
Audible files apparently no longer work once you’ve cancelled your account
If your computer dies – you may no longer be able to listen to the files you’ve purchased
Audible files cannot be used on mp3 players other than the ipod
Audible files can only be burnt to a CD once
The Rick Gervais Show on Audible.com
O’Reilly.net on audible’s DRM hell
Computing Pioneer Dave Winer’s experince with audible
Dave Winers Podcast on his experience with audible
Goldwave Software – can supposedly circumvent the odious restrictions on audible files
Audible Subscription Plans
Out of Control: The New Biology of Machines, Social Systems, and the Economic World
Kevin (former executive editor of Wired magazine) Kelly’s 11 year old masterpiece is free to read online
The book covers the emergent biological properties of complex systems – to ultimately argue ‘that biological and machine life are converging’
The book covers topics as varied as transhuman evolution, complexity, anthropology, epistemology, ontology, and ethics
Out of Control on Kebin Kelly.org
Expose for Windows – a number of tools which replicate the functionality of the fantastic exposé tool on mac 
Stardock Object Dock – Make your desktop a mactop 
New Trailer for shitcool Richard Linklater directed, Philip K.Dick Adapted flick – A Scanner Darkly 
Fuzzmail – Blurs the Bountrys between chat and mail