27 February 2007


One of my favorite SF authors, Eric Flint, has a clear, well thought-out editorial up on why Digital Rights Management (DRM) drives piracy, instead of preventing it:

I would think the point is obvious. Pirates rob bullion ships, they don't rob grain ships. Electronic copyright infringement is something that can only become an "economic epidemic" under certain conditions. Any one of the following:

  1. The product they want—electronic texts—are hard to find, and thus valuable.
  2. The products they want are high-priced, so there's a fair amount of money to be saved by stealing them.
  3. The legal products come with so many added-on nuisances that the illegal version is better to begin with.

Those are the three conditions that will create widespread electronic copyright infringement, especially in combination. Why? Because they're the same three general conditions that create all large-scale smuggling enterprises.

Go read the whole thing in There Ain't No Such Thing as a Free Lunch.

[via boingboing]

UPDATE: From boingboing this morning, "Reps. Rick Boucher and John Doolittle's FAIR Use Act would remove some of the entertainment industry's most draconian anti-innovation weapons and chip away at the Digital Millennium Copyright Act's (DMCA) broad restrictions on fair use. Take action now and tell Congress to help restore balance in copyright.

26 February 2007

QotD for 26 Feb., 2007

"The word 'rational' has been strongly abused of late times...He who begins by loving Christianity better than truth will proceed by loving his own sect and church better than Christianity and end in loving himself best of all."

--- Samuel Taylor Coleridge

17 February 2007

Walking Apart

Last Friday, at the meeting of the Primates of the Anglican Communion near Dar es Salaam, Tanzania, seven archbishops refused to receive Holy Communion with their fellows due to the presence of the Presiding Bishop of The Episcopal Church. These lofty princes in purple, led by Nigerian Archbishop Peter Akinola, cited rubrics from the Book of Common Prayer as the reason for the snub:

Ye that do truly and earnestly repent you of your sins, and are in love and charity with your neighbours, and intend to lead a new life, following the commandments of God, and walking from henceforth in his holy ways; Draw near with faith

The Rev. Br. Tobias S. Haller, BSG, has an excellent blog entry up entitled Those Who Walk Apart, which clearly explains:

the utter inversion of the principles of repentance and forgiveness (that is, it is only in one's own power to repent and forgive -- to demand either of others is not a Gospel value!)

contained in the "reasoning" of these appallingly self-righteousness church leaders.

14 February 2007

QotD for 14 Feb., 2007

"A logically consistent Evangelicalism (if this is not an oxymoron) cannot allow for alternative points of view (or it collapses)."

--- Prior Aelred, St. Gregory's Abbey, Three Rivers, MI

09 February 2007

Canonical Partnership with Linspire

Two of the most popular, Debian-based desktop Linux OSes have decided to share technologies between the two distros. The partnership between Canonical (home of Ubuntu Linux) and Linspire will result in changes like Freespire 2.0 (due in April, 2007) being based on Ubuntu, and future Ubuntu releases having access to proprietary software (e.g. DVD players, media codecs) via Linspire's Click 'N Run (CNR) service.

There's a FAQ avail on the Freespire wiki with more info.

08 February 2007


cartoon from www.weblogcartoons.com

Cartoon by Dave Walker. Find more cartoons you can freely re-use on your blog at We Blog Cartoons.

Yeah, that's pretty much how I feel about gambling. Esp. the most popular forms - slot machines & video poker.

05 February 2007

Molly Ivins

Everyone's no doubt heard of the passing of quintessential Texas humorist Molly Ivins. The Houston Chronicle has a few of her many, tasty quotes available here, and there are many more in this entry from About.com. One of my absolute favorites was from her response to a speech by presidential hopeful Pat Buchanan to the Republican National Convention in 1992:

Many people did not care for Pat Buchanan's speech; it probably sounded better in the original German...

May she rest in peace, and may light perpetual shine upon her.