Monthly Archives: February 2003


Read ‘em and weep. Gonna have to get intimate with the government if you want to get on the plane.
I think CAPPS II and the related “registered traveler program” are wrong. I’d rather keep my freedoms and civil liberties than get the security of Big Brother, thank you very much.
CAPPS II Data-Mining System [...]

“Best-Case Scenario”

I hate it when news stories about our Administration sound like fairy tales:
But hawkish administration officials argue that ousting Saddam and his regime could remake the Middle East and help safeguard the world from the specter of international terrorists armed with nuclear, chemical or biological weapons.
In their best-case scenario, regime change in Baghdad would trigger [...]

How a Civil Society Works

I wanted to share a reply I made to a friend elsewhere, who said the US is committed now, and has to consummate the war. Her comments are in italics.
Pete and other prog-bloggers, please note-this kind of broad brush (”To me, Wolfowitz is as bad as Saddam”) is guaranteed to make readers lose sight [...]


Well, this was the second time they called me about it, so I went ahead and got it over with.
Such a deal! Now that my ATTBI cable Internet has turned into Comcast, my monthly rate will go from $42.95 to $56.95 on April 1st. But if I act now and add basic cable [...]

Synergies and Future Opportunities

Dan Gillmor: Google Buys Pyra: Blogging Goes Big-Time.

Self-Organizing Direct Democracy

We’re taking baby steps, but oh!, what exciting baby steps.
We had our 2nd Emergent Democracy Happening today at 22:00 GMT, with over 20 attendees from Japan, US, Canada, UK, and France (if I’m getting everybody’s location right).
Simultaneously, we were using for voice, Greg’s ARSC for chat, and Socialtext’s new access-controlled public Workspace wiki (hi! [...]

Respecting the Rights of the People

Check out The Committee for the Liberation of Iraq.
Their mission statement begins, “The Committee for the Liberation of Iraq was formed to promote regional peace, political freedom and international security by replacing the Saddam Hussein regime with a democratic government that respects the rights of the Iraqi people and ceases to threaten the community of [...]

Power Laws

Speaking of power laws, some named examples:
Pareto wealth distribution: Number N of people with wealth greater than x is described by log(N) = Log(A) – (m)log(x), where A and m are constants. (Vilfredo Pareto, 1896, “courbe des revenus de Pareto”)
Zipf’s Law: Size (cities, word frequencies, etc.) decreases as the reciprocal of rank. Generalized as [...]

Self-similar Scaling and Properties of Recurrent Excitatory Networks

Joi wonders about democracy and the emergent behavior of blogs, stemming partly from “all of the stuff rippling out of Clay Shirky’s comments about blogs and the power laws.”
For a couple years now, I’ve been working on the hypothesis that the process that governs the way our brains think, described by William Calvin as the [...]

Powell’s Case + Outside Assessment

The Guardian UK has a panel of experts review Colin Powell’s case on Iraq to the UN Security Council.