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

Archive forNovember, 2001 | back to home

30 November 2001

The report I helped produce for the UK’s e-envoy on “E-enabling the Voluntary and Community sector” has been published. (A Guardian article about it and the new Volcom group is here) I hope it helps to spur the Government to provide more support to the voluntary sector and that the sector itself will wake up to the opportunities that the Internet offers…

28 November 2001
Filed under:Uncategorized at11:06 am

The “War on Terror” is not the only reason to be wary of widespread use of encryption and anonymity-protecting technology – paedophiles can use it too. More than 100 were arrested today but according to the police (admittedly a biased source, but still…) another 400 suspects could not be traced because they left no electronic trail.

25 November 2001
Filed under:Uncategorized at8:29 pm

Now that Computer Associates has stopped offering free anti-virus software, the only free, regularly updated, PC anti virus tool is Trend Micro’s free online virus scanner “House Call“. Just visit their site and the scanning software automatically downloads. The only problem is, of course, that it only finds the viruses when they are already on your machine. But what do you want for nothing?

(Incidentally I have added this link and a link to the Dave’s (no relation) excellent Quick Search Deskbar to the ever-growing set of useful links to the right. Hope you like ’em!)loans day 500 pay500 pay day loanssoftwaer 6 loan 9 paydaypayday online payday 7 loanloan payday 8 12 loans11 8 loan payday business99 loans paydayconsolidation a loan bill debtsaving account loan only paydayrate adjustable loans realestatemerchant without account process card creditreport absolutely credit no trial freecredit adverse loan baddoctoral accredited degree onlinecredit rivers federal 3 unionaccept today cards creditcard credit payment acceptwithout card acco accept merchant credit Map

22 November 2001
Filed under:Uncategorized at9:46 am

Political correctness (and gratuitous Harry Potter references) run rampant in this premium-only Salon piece by American uber-Liberal Arianna Huffington. She insists that women should be part of the Afghan government – after all, “Harry Potter is smart enough to seek Hermione’s indispensable assistance” (!) Of course it is important that women in Afghanistan be allowed to exercise their human rights again, but insisting on political representation is surely a demand too far for the present.

Filed under:Uncategorized at2:17 am

Fouad Ajami, a writer for the New York Times, takes a detailed look at the news coverage of Al Jazeera (registration required). He concludes that it is biased against the US and that instead of responding to it the American government should concentrate on giving interviews to the “less inflammatory” Arab TV stations (which also, it appears, have more viewers). Admittedly, the way the news is presented in the segments the author highlights doesn’t seem too fair, but much of the West’s TV has not always been even-handed either, and it is unfair to mix description of the “straight news” segments with the “talk radio”-style programming.

Whatever you think of Al Jazeera, in my view only agreeing to talk to the “official” Arab news stations which the author himself admits are “pompous” and “sycophantic” can hardly be the answer.

For a shorter but more involving take on the same subject, listen from about 7 minutes in to this excellent recent This American Life episode – Rashomon. A Palestinian teenager living in Chicago gets most of her news from Al Jazeera and other Arab broadcasters – unsurprisingly, her world view is a little different from the average American’s.

18 November 2001
Filed under:Uncategorized at11:48 pm

A Salmon of Doubt, Douglas Adams’ last book and the sixth book in the HHGTTG “trilogy” is to be published posthumously next May, according to The Sunday Telegraph. It says the text “will be edited but will remain unfinished”. It will be in a compendium which will also include magazine and newspaper articles, lectures, writings from his website and his work with BBC Radio 4. It will also include the screenplay of The Hitch Hiker’sGuide to the Galaxy.

It sounds like it could be a bit of a cash-in effort, frankly, but doubtless will be eagerly awaited nonetheless.doctoral distance degrees by accredited570 score credit a goodfor cme council accreditationprogram credit account hawaii merchant card676 credit scorefor accounting memo credit entriescard credit affrimunion insurance credit 717 Map

Filed under:Uncategorized at10:16 pm

The communal weblog Plastic linked (with commentary) to a pundit in The Guardian who takes the left to task for “the absolutism of its pessimistic insistence that only catastrophe could follow from the bombs.” Oddly enough the Guardian’s own opinion pages are full of leftists with similar views – indeed it is one of the only papers to voice them (though to its credit its “official” view in its leader column is slightly more balanced).

Since the Guardian is my own paper it is not surprising that some of its pessimism rubbed off on me early on, but I have to say that I am delighted and relieved to see that short term at least the doubters have been proven wrong. Meanwhile those who were negative before remain so – they just project their predicted catastrophes further into the future.home 80 loan and 20and equity home loans 2006 taxeshome american all loansmortgage loan 5 downpaymentmilitary loans advanceloan mortgage 228cash guaranteed loans 100adjusted deduction gross income interest loanloan $500refinance loan 100

14 November 2001
Filed under:Uncategorized at1:20 pm

Salon’s subscription-based “premium” news is turning out to be surprisingly useful. Today they provided a good roundup of opinion from various US-based ‘experts’ on the likely shape of future Afghan governments and what will happen next.

On a lighter note, here’s something amusing from The Onion – “Area Man Acts Like He’s Been Interested In Afghanistan All Along“.stones mp3 12mp3 3 doorsmustang 05 mp3doors mp3 3mp3 forum 5 1st editor tag 8with mp3 4runner toyota connection 2005s rock garage 60 mp3mp3 doors 3 Map

12 November 2001
Filed under:Uncategorized at7:30 pm

Well, I didn’t expect this! The lightning crumbling of Taliban resistance took me completely by surprise. I didn’t think the US air strikes were doing much, I thought the Taliban outnumbered the Northern Alliance and that they and the Arab volunteers would be highly motivated fighters. Mind you, I was not alone in my suppositions – most of the pundits seemed to be taking a similar line. That we could be so spectacularly wrong about this makes me wonder how much else I don’t understand about the situation. It certainly makes me even more uncertain about what will happen next.

Are the Taliban just going to regroup in the Southern region and continue a bloody guerilla action? Or is this the beginning of the end?

Most importantly, is the West going to stay in for the long haul and try to ‘win the peace’? I hope we have learned by now that poor lawless states are not just bad for their inhabitants and a blight on the moral landscape – they are breeding grounds for economic migrants and terrorists…

8 November 2001
Filed under:Uncategorized at12:29 pm

Plastic has done an interesting roundup of links and commentary on the economics of the online gaming business. It suggests that subscription services for “conventional” gaming are struggling and that several online gaming “worlds” like Majestic (which sounded very interesting) and Anarchy Online have not been successful. As others commented subsequently, however, Everquest has done very well and The Sims Online will doubtless be a hit (assuming the technology works) so it would be a mistake to write the online gaming industry off too soon…

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