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April 30, 2005

Sandstorm in Iraq

Oh the pictures you find in the Flickr Iraq feed. Amazing.

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Cory in CGW

This is from the fine-print crawl on p. 26 of the new issue of Computer Gaming World:

Author Cory Doctorow is promoting his new novel witha virtual book tour. His first stop? The MMO Second Life.

The new book is Someone Comes to Town, Someone Leaves Town. Cory promoted his previous book via Second Life. This time, though, Second Lifers are trying to create a book object in-world that they can read, with turnable pages, since Cory donated a copy of the text to them.

Not to mention that it’s so cool to come across Cory’s name in CGW.

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Preleaking encores

From BradSucks:

[01:01] very very soon it would seem that preleaking an album will be like a band leaving the stage before their encore

[01:01] just totally expected, even though everyone can see it for what it is

All part of the way the Net is disintermediating time.

Ok, so that phrase means absolutely nothing. But it sounds damn good. In fact, the Net is making time more complex, smudging it, interlineating it, hyperlinking it, depriving it of its gatekeeping function.

Ok, that didn’t mean much. Here’s what’s actually happening, IMO: We have social conventions that let us act as if there are moments that strictly divide one state from another, especially when it comes to making things public: products, artworks, selves. But now the public revelation of a work happens as the work grows. And after it’s made public, many objects are fluid enough that they remain in process. Time is not as neatly divided as it used to be.

But “disintermediating time” sounds so much better!


Also from BradSucks:

Uncyclopedia on Air Guitar – the Uncyclopedia (it’s like Wikipedia, but all lies) article on air guitar is worth a read.


Also from BradSucks: New songs, including

Certain Death
Total Breakdown
Understood By Your Dad
You’re Not Going Anywhere
Dropping Out Of School

All free of course. Which is why you ought to buy them. [Technorati tags: ]

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Linux on Xbox: The shape of DRM to come

Michael Robertson, who funded the $200,000 attempt to get Linux running on an Xbox, writes about the XBox’s successful DRM implementation as a harbinger of Longhorn:

In spite of sharing the insides with a traditional PC, the Xbox has a dramatic and dangerous difference. A PC buyer can install any software or hardware that they wish. They own the machine and can change it to suit their needs – true ownership. There are no limitations. This open architecture is largely responsible for the two-decade personal computer revolution. With an Xbox, the user is merely renting the box. Microsoft decides what software (games) users can load and even how they can use it. When it connects to the net, Microsoft can and has instructed the machine to change its behavior to block certain users, functionality or software that it does not agree with. They are changing the rules after you purchase it to suit their needs and not your needs.

The Xbox served as the training wheels for Microsoft’s new Longhorn operating system, which is slipping to a 2007 launch. Like the Xbox, Longhorn will limit what software you can load. In the guise of “security”, Microsoft is trying to dramatically change the way PCs work. Instead of the owner deciding what software they want to install and run, Microsoft is seizing that power from them. Under the smokescreen of security, they are pronouncing that it is good for Microsoft to decide what software you can use.

[Technorati tags: ]

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April 29, 2005

Kids’ drawings from Darfur

At Global Voices, Ethan blogs about children’s drawings of the horrors of Darfur.

“The Janjaweed came on camels and horses, very fast. Sometimes two on one camel, with guns. Many soldiers, with guns. This one is a machine gun. They were shooting us.”

“These here, at the bottom of the page, these are dead people.”

“Now my nights are hard because I feel frightened”

“We needed help. There was no one to protect us.”

[Technorati tags: ]

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Rebecca’s Vietnam photos

She took some nice ‘uns on her recent trip, which you can read all about here. [Technorati tag:]

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Joe Mahoney’s ontology

No, not ontology in the computer science. Ontology in the “logos of being” sense, whatever that means, which is exactly why my friend Joe turns to poetry.

Also, it’s spring. [Technorati tag:]

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April 28, 2005

Global Voices gets even better

Global Voices now is running roundups of the news. Surprisingly, there are things going on in the world! GV is a daily must-read for me.

And to hear some actual voices, you can listen to Ben Walker’s Theory of Everything episode about GV here. [Technorati tag:]

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Bill Gates demands more heterosexual foreign engineers

Microsoft Chairman Bill Gates yesterday urged the Bush administration and lawmakers Wednesday to abolish immigration limits on heterosexual foreign engineers who can be hired by U.S. companies.

Ok, so I’m combining two stories…

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Scare Your Child Straight Day

I’m at corporate HQ in Atlanta where the unusual number of kids is explained by the fact that it’s Bring Your Child to Work day. And thus ends childhood.

Note to self: Invest in anti-depressants.

I remember going to work with my father — he was a labor lawyer for NY State — and, well, let’s say it did not fill me with a desire to grow up. Still doesn’t.

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