Monthly Archives: May 2002

Pas de souci, les enfants!

From an editorial cartoon in Le Monde: “No worries, kids. We’re only consumers,” says dad.
The cartoon shows the family sitting on the sofa (on a dinner plate), staring at the gaping maw of their monster-TV (who’s about to eat them).
The monster’s fangs spell TF1 — the name of France’s leading general-interest channel.
The cartoon accompanies [...]

Publishers to Pay to Manage Borders’ Categories

Borders is introducing a category management plan which establishes publishing companies as “captains” of a particular category — paying Borders to provide advice about which books to buy and display in the category they manage.
Covered by the Australian Financial Review in “Borders reforms bookselling traditions,” and in non-public articles in yesterday’s PW Daily and Wall [...]

“Founding Fathers” of the Internet Receive Award

“The 2002 Prince of Asturias Award for Scientific and Technological Research [has been bestowed] on the American researchers Lawrence Roberts, Robert Kahn and Vinton Cerf, and the British researcher Tim Berners-Lee, for their groundbreaking contribution to the development of the Internet and the World Wide Web, unquestionably one of the major technological breakthroughs of our [...]

Microsoft Targets Defense Dept.’s Use of Open Source Software

‘… In what one military source called a “barrage” of contacts with officials at the Defense Information Systems Agency and the office of Defense Secretary Donald H. Rumsfeld over the past few months, the company said “open source” software threatens security and its intellectual property.
But the effort may have backfired. A May 10 report prepared [...]

Put Down That Harpoon!

Turns out even if you don’t think killing cetaceans is bad for your karma, whale and dolphin meat is polluted and bad for your body anyway.
Not that PCB and mercury contamination is generally a good thing, mind you…

Mobile Phones for US and International Use

Generally, Canada works like the US — nothing special needed.
For the rest of the world, you need a GSM phone. The GSM network here is GSM-1900. Everywhere else is GSM-900 and/or GSM-1800, so your phone will need to support one or both of those frequencies, too.
The US GSM providers are Voicestream and Cingular; [...]

“exchange economies tend to steamroll gift economies”

Jon Ippolito’s excellent essay “Why Art Should Be Free” covers the theme, “Making art into property helps plenty of folks — even a few artists. The problem is, it cripples artists more than it helps them, by covertly impeding their power to create, to get paid, even to give.”
Here are the section headings to give [...]

“Farm bill shames President”

President Bush signed the Farm Security and Rural Investment Act of 2002 Monday.
His action stinks. It will cost US taxpayers an extra $80 billion over the next six years, benefits mostly big farmers, makes the US look stupid — all for the hope of a little more leverage on the Hill.
A few reactions:
“Farm bill [...]

Information Commons

From UPI: “Copyright, patent abuse threaten info“, a short article about Public Knowledge / New America Foundation’s conference, “Protecting the Information Commons: Asserting the Public Interest In Copyright Law and Digital Infrastructure” that happened last Friday.

Internet: A New Forum for Proclaiming the Gospel

Today is the Catholic Church’s XXXVI World Communications Day.
Each year the Pope writes about a particular theme of communication and Church. This year the theme is “Internet: A New Forum for Proclaiming the Gospel.”
I think it’s cool that the Church is giving props to the Net. Part of the message sounds a lot [...]