Weblog on the Internet and public policy, journalism, virtual community, and more from David Brake, a Canadian academic, consultant and journalist

Archive forMay, 2001 | back to home

31 May 2001
Filed under:Uncategorized at5:59 pm

BBC News – Computer virus tackles child porn An ingenious attempt to use viruses to serve humanity instead of irritating it. It searches infected computers for suspicious image files and sends a directory listing to one of several authorities around the world, but no law enforcement organization is going to be too happy about receiving a deluge of email much of which will be false alarms.

Also, this depends on a child porn user opening an attachment on an email message with the subject “Help us all to end illegal child porn now” – hardly likely!

30 May 2001
Filed under:Uncategorized at1:03 pm

I have added a discussion topic about Linux in Africa. If you are a Linux partisan, read the original piece and my views (as expressed yesterday) and come and join the debate…

Filed under:Interesting facts at12:56 pm

Study Casts Doubt on the Placebo Effect Could it be that sick people given placebos get better simply because sometimes people’s health improves on its own? It appears from this that the placebo effect has become over the years so “obvious” that nobody thought to question the methodology used to demonstrate it. No more “take two asprin and call me in the morning”?

Thanks to the Follow Me Here weblog for the linkmovie history of makingsex wife homemade moviesquizzes movie horrorspot hot moviehot movie teenporn movies illegalinspector gadget moviesample interacial movies Map

Filed under:Uncategorized at12:52 pm

Britain going to Hell in a handbasket according to this rather depressing article from Stern magazine in Germany (reprinted in English in the Scotsman). It comprehensively rubbishes the NHS, London transport and, of course, the farm crisis. It’s exaggerated of course but is still quite a worrying rant.

Thanks to the Follow Me Here weblog for the link

Filed under:Uncategorized at12:45 pm

Invisible toy doll makes money out of thin air A great novelty toy idea – £1.99 buys you a case containing… well… nothing. “The packaging states (among other things): “Invisible Jim. As not seen on TV. Warning: Small parts may ruin your sex life. Batteries not included. A gripping hand would be nice. Camouflage suit sold separately.”

Thanks to the Follow Me Here weblog for the link

29 May 2001
Filed under:Copyright,Humour & Entertainment at5:14 pm

Mathematician humour: “WARNING: Do NOT calculate Pi in binary. It is conjectured that this number is normal, meaning that it contains ALL finite bit strings…

“If you compute it, you will be guilty of:

* Copyright infringement (of all books, all short stories, all
newspapers, all magazines, all web sites, all music, all movies,
and all software, including the complete Windows source code)

* Possession of everyone’s SSN, everyone’s credit card numbers,
everyone’s PIN numbers, everyone’s unlisted phone numbers, and
everyone’s passwords

Also, your computer will contain all of the nastiest known computer
viruses. In fact, all of the nastiest POSSIBLE computer viruses.”

Wayne Marshall, who has been involved in development work in Africa, writes about his experiences. He has some important lessons to impart about building skills instead of parachuting in equipment and about the need to provide clean water before bandwidth in desperately poor regions.

I have my doubts about his belief that Linux is a suitable operating system to provide to needy Africans, however. It may be “ideologically pure” and, more importantly, useful on low-spec systems, but I imagine that because it is still not fully user-friendly it may be difficult to train non-computer literate (or indeed semi-literate) people to use. I also worry about whether the skills Linux users learn will continue to be useful once they have to inter-operate with the wider world of Windows PCs.

28 May 2001
Filed under:Uncategorized at6:41 pm

UK elections ignore the net According to the Guardian, only 0.1% of election-related news stories surveyed were about information technology or e-commerce. Disappointingly, the “election process” (who is rubbishing who) made up 37.2% of the coverage – by far the largest proportion.ny lpn in accredited programstherapy physio alberta program in accreditedadverse credit wirralof accreditation college junior aquinas nursingcourse accredited specialist medical codingambulatory accrediting for surgery bodies centerspublic unaccredited versus accredited schoolsaccommodation crediton Map

24 May 2001
Filed under:Uncategorized at1:15 pm

Work Avoided Through Extensive List-Making A classic from The Onion. FWIW I have 50 items on 6 todo lists…

Filed under:Uncategorized at10:56 am

Free computers and broadband net access… for poor folks in a Baltimore public housing project. Believe it or not, only two thirds of the residents have signed up so far.

“Residents typically wanted to know whether they would lose their place in public housing if the computer broke down. Some wanted to know, conversely, if they had to take the computer to keep their apartment.

Others did not want to be bothered, said Constance Mayfield, executive director of the program. “In a community like this, even though people are apprised of services, many are not accustomed” to taking advantage of them, Ms. Mayfield said, noting that this was just the sort of problem being sought out in the experiment.”

It seems that kids are the prime motivator… None of this is too surprising, but it is a good read.

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