Monday, March 25, 2013


Ok, after 3 years here on Blogger, it's going bye-bye.

The terrible interface that Google has given the blogger back-end is the straw that broke the camels back.

Over the years, it's lost functionality, and become difficult to work with. it's slow, and sucks resources. And if I take more than an hour or two, it will consume VAST quantities of ram, and an entire cpu core.

Wednesday, March 13, 2013

Governance by Powerpoint

It wasn’t until I was perusing some videos online, which mentioned the death of Hugo Chavez, that I was made aware of his weekly program, Aló Presidente. While no comments on the content of the show, the idea is certainly one that needs to be embraced.

The problem is one that we have nowadays worldwide. Political leaders are treated like kings. While that might seem amusingly obvious, the underlying point is that political leaders often consider themselves so much better htan ‘the people’ that they’re in a constant bubble, afraid to interact regularly with the outside world. We end up with a political class that can’t think on its feet, and is ignorant to the realities facing those they represent and/or govern.

Thursday, March 7, 2013

Libel Reform, And Why It Matters To Britain

The risk of libel reform failing is not one that any Briton should find acceptable. The damage our libel laws have caused over the decades is immeasurable, and has only increased since the advent of the internet.

Mouth wide shut
CC-BY Soumyadeep Paul
Now the vastly overdue libel measures that would bring the UK out of the 19th Century, and into at least the 20th Century, are on hold and may falter, due to the intervention of Lord Puttnam, and his inclusion of statutory regulation of the press in the bill.

Tuesday, March 5, 2013

Scalia Hints at End for USA PATRIOT Act

During oral arguments over the Voting Rights Act, Justice Scalia indicated that there might be a justification for getting rid of the USA Patriot Act. During Oral arguments at the Supreme Court over the much lauded Voting Rights Act, hints were dropped as to how the wildly unpopular and overreaching anti-terrorist act could be dropped in a face-saving manner.

Tuesday, February 26, 2013

6 Strikes - Because the DMCA Wasn't One-Sided Enough

The debut of the 6-strikes system is now on us, and yet we have to wonder why it’s here in the first place. The US already has a robust court system for dealing with alleged infringers (and tens of thousands that have been targeted by it over the last few years can attest to that) as well as a notice-and-takedown system in the DMCA. So why do we need another system, this graduated response setup?

Monday, February 25, 2013

Cory Doctorow in Atlanta (full!)

Last week, blogger, activist, author and all-around nice guy stopped by in Atlanta on his tour to promote Homeland, his new book. I dragged my wife and eldest over to the talk, held at the surprisingly nice auditorium at the Decatur public library. Even arriving 15 minutes early, seats were hard to find, and so I was near the back.

Wednesday, February 20, 2013

Tesla Motors – Supercharged Supersnooping

The on-going feud the last week or two between New York Times columnist John Broder and Tesla Motors Elon Musk has highlighted at least one issue. Modern cars are going to be hell for privacy activists. In fact, the car you sit in could end up invalidating United States v Jones – the case requiring long-term GPS tracking have a warrant.

Monday, February 18, 2013

Cory Doctorow in Decatur

For those that didn't know, Cory Doctorow was doing a tour to promote his new book "Homeland", the sequel to Little Brother. On Feb 17th, he stopped by the Decatur Library, to give a little talk.

In the warm up before the main talk, he took some questions and answers, and I thought it would be a good idea to ask him his thoughts on the Pirate Party. While I managed to record most of the response, I missed the initial bit.

Thursday, February 14, 2013

The Absurd (Unconstitutional) Photo Manipulation Bill

This post by K`Tetch first appeared at the Pirate Party of Georgia Site
If you are following us on Facebook or Twitter (and if not, why not?), you’ll notice we posted two news stories about the Georgia state Government this past week. One was on a broadband limitation bill, and the other relates to online photo manipulation.

Our response to the broadband bill was published yesterday, but the response to the photo-manipulation bill requires more detail than a simple press release can convey.

As you can probably guess, we’re obviously in opposition to this. It’s a clear example of tantrum-based legislation ("I don't like this, so it needs to be dealt with"), driven by a deep ignorance of the fundamental laws of the United States, and the principles of which the country stands.

Sunday, February 10, 2013

Star Wars Online

No, this isn't the MMORPG (I prefer Star Trek Online) Instead, this is about an amazing use of technology to entertain.

As recounted in his tumblr, Cisco Certified Internetwork Expert (CCIE) Ryan Weber was bored when stuck in the snow in Boston this weekend. So he created the following cool traceroute.

Friday, February 8, 2013

TPB AFK is Now Out

The film about the Pirate Bay, TPB_AFK is now out.

The film is premiering at the Berlin international film festival right now, but you can watch it just as if you were there, thanks to the power of the internet.

Wednesday, January 23, 2013

Abandon Integrity, All Ye that Gain Power?

If we had any doubt of the reason we need to be extra vigilant in our work, this month has provided them in spades. But there is one thing that ties everything together, and that is the matter of integrity, and accountability. Through all the issues, those that take the lead are never held to account. Often, ironically, they do these acts while trying to hold others to account, in some sort of twisted egotistical irony powertrip.

Friday, January 18, 2013

Early Hands-on with Dotcom's new MEGA

Tonight, the tech world news will contain Mega coverage of Kim Dotcom, as his much-publicised service launches in New Zealand. The launch comes exactly 1 year after the US-led armed raid of Dotcom’s mansion.

I was lucky to get an early invite, and eagerly tested it to see if it has been worth the hype. Is it the new big thing or is it just another file locker?

Wednesday, January 16, 2013

IPO Rejects Censorship Transparency Request

Colour me UNsurprised. The final decision of the Freedom of Information Request filed after the long, ongoing saga of censorship finally responded. The response of the internal review was to, surprise surprise, keep the sordid details to themselves, and in doing so, they’ve produced what might be one of the most inadvertently funny lines I’ve ever seen in a FOI case.

Monday, January 14, 2013

Alpha Geeks (and Pirates) Explained

LHC's ATLAS detector, with Alpha Geek
 Copyright Maximilien Brice, CERN
For some time, there has been a misunderstanding of how to deal with Pirates, or even just getting their viewpoint. They’re seen as arrogant, hard-headed, brash, and full of wacky ideas. More interestingly, they find it hard to work together smoothly, to find a common consensus. Why is that? Ladies and Gentlemen, the answer is simple, it is ‘Alpha Geek’.

Tuesday, January 8, 2013

How the Police and Politicians Can Regain the Public Trust.

CC-BY Thunderchild7
A few months ago, I asked what we should do about law enforcement officials that broke the law in a piece called "Is it time to police the police?". It’s taken me some time, but now I've compiled the responses and got some suggestions to float to the global hive-mind that peruses FoI (and my own site)

First, let’s be clear. Not all cops are ‘dirty’, but at the same time, not all citizens are criminals. Yet since it’s considered acceptable that in many western countries, you have to prove you’ve done no wrong to a police officer, rather than they have to prove a criminal act has been committed, it’s only fair to consider them the same way.