Wednesday, March 31, 2004

illustration process

illustration process

Vendors under pressure to drop AMD notebook plans

Vendors under pressure to drop AMD notebook plans: "A STORY ON Digitimes today suggests that large Taiwanese vendors Acer, Asustek and Benq are resisting pressure by Intel to stop them making notebooks using AMD chips.

The article doesn't say what kind of pressure Intel is putting on the Asian giants, but one thing is for sure, AMD has an Achilles' Heel in its underfunded notebook division.

At the introduction of the Athlon 64 at the Computex show in Taiwan last September, AMD was unable to show anything other than token notebook machines. It's currently putting its limited marketing funds into selling desktop and server chips, and faces big hurdles in making a breakthrough on the notebook front."

Vole ticked off for not fixing critical flaw

Vole ticked off for not fixing critical flaw: "SECURITY COMPANY eEye has attacked Microsoft for not fixing two critical security flaws it was warned about 200 days ago.

The flaws appear in all versions of Windows NT 4.0, Windows 2000, Windows XP and Windows Server 2003. They affect core services in the operating system and can be remotely exploited."

University sues Peoplesoft

University sues Peoplesoft: "PEOPLESOFT has been sued for alleged fraud by Ohio State for its role in a software project at Cleveland State University.

The state wants more than $130 million because Peoplesoft 'misrepresented the capabilities of its software and failed to provide promised features'.

Peoplesoft was chosen by the state for the revamp of the universities its student administration systems in 1996.

But the University was less than impressed with Peoplesoft as some of the features pushed by sales people turned out to be 'little more than vapourware' and that the programs had trouble administering student financial aid, keeping student records in synch and running properly on the IBM DB/2 database.

The state has also sued Peoplesoft's supplier Kaludis Consulting Group, a Washington-based consulting firm, for failing to fulfil its contractual duties. ?"

El Goonish Shive - Copyright and TM 2002-04 Dan Shive

El Goonish Shive - Copyright and TM 2002-04 Dan Shive

Building 12 - The Comic (Updated Every Monday)

Building 12 - The Comic (Updated Every Monday)

Yesterday's Fashion

Yesterday's Fashion

Tuesday, March 30, 2004

The City Maps

The City Maps

Encryption and Security Tutorial

Encryption and Security Tutorial: "This page contains my godzilla crypto tutorial, totalling 704 slides in 8 parts, of which the first 7 are the tutorial itself and the 8th is extra material which covers crypto politics. Part 8 isn't officially part of the technical tutorial itself (much of it is now also rather dated, the material is extensively covered elsewhere so I haven't spent much time updating it)."

Peter Gutmann's Home Page

Peter Gutmann's Home Page: "Professional Paranoid

Department of Computer Science
University of Auckland
Private Bag 92019
Auckland, New Zealand"

"Building a fully featured, smart robot with sight, hearing, radar and many other nice features, when you only have $50."Copyright (C) 2002 by Michal Zalewski
...and other contributors...

Some photos of the robot are here:

Last revision: 8/28/2002

1) Introduction - why and how?

I decided to build a robot. This is something I wanted to do for a longer
while, so the decision just happened, don't expect me to give you any good
explanation =) Since you are here, chances are, you are or were thinking
about it at some point.



wvWare, library for converting Word documents

wvWare, library for converting Word documents

[strike out]

[strike out]: "This is not an exciting story: I happened to be browsing aimlessly through case studies and other publications released by Microsoft as a part of their 'Get the facts' initiative. At one point, I stumbled upon a Word file I wanted to read - and as soon as I ran it through wvWare, I noticed there is a good deal of amusing change tracking information still recorded within the document. Naturally, publishing documents with 'collaboration' data is not unheard of in the corporate world, but the fact Microsoft had became a victim of their own technology, and had failed to run their own tools against these publications makes it more entertaining. On a more serious note, it serves as a good warning it is really difficult to manage this, and that inline filtering tools on SMTP gateways and in web publishing systems may be necessary in some corporate environments.

A pointless idea came to my mind that instant: why not run a gentle web spider against all Microsoft sites in English, specifically looking for other instances of tracking data not removed from documents? I coded a bunch of scripts and let them run through the night, fetching approximately 10,000 unique documents; over 10% was identified as containing change tracking records. I decided to collect only those with deleted text still present, yielding a crop of over 5% of all documents. Quite impressive. Below, you will find a brief (and rest assured, incomplete) list of the most entertaining samples I've run into, along with some speculation (and only speculation) as to the reasons we see them."

Music sharing doesn't kill CD sales, study says | CNET

Music sharing doesn't kill CD sales, study says | CNET "A study of file-sharing's effects on music sales says online music trading appears to have had little part in the recent slide in CD sales.

For the study, released Monday, researchers at Harvard University and the University of North Carolina tracked music downloads over 17 weeks in 2002, matching data on file transfers with actual market performance of the songs and albums being downloaded. Even high levels of file-swapping seemed to translate into an effect on album sales that was 'statistically indistinguishable from zero,' they wrote."

Ars Technica: Is P2P the next 'drug war'?

Ars Technica: Is P2P the next 'drug war'?

Ars Technica: The PC enthusiast's resource

Ars Technica: The PC enthusiast's resource: "The Recording Industry has spent a prodigious amount of effort on manipulating statistics in order to shroud the industry in the shadow of doom and gloom. In recent years, the push has been to villainize P2P users, often to such an extent that the serious career criminals are ignored when the discussion of piracy is brought up. To make matters worse, the industry has been caught playing fast and loose with consumption data, all the while ignoring the opportunity that's been in front of their face. Sadly, the trend continues. The Australian market has had its best year ever, but they're trying to cover it up to rhetorical ends."

Saturday, March 27, 2004

Janklow sentenced to 100 days in jail for killing motorcyclist Randy Scott

Janklow sentenced to 100 days in jail for killing motorcyclist Randy Scott: "William Janklow was sentenced to 100 days in jail.

The statute under which 64-year-old Janklow was convicted for second-degree manslaughter sets no mimimum sentence. The range of possible sentences that Judge Rodney Steele could have imposed on Janklow ranged from nothing to 11 years behind bars and/or a an $11,400 fine. Options included probation, loss of drioving priviledges, restitution and community service. The average sentence is around seven years. The judge had a detailed presentencing report to help determine the sentence. He also heard from Scott's family and Janklow supporters.

Scott's family has also filed suit for unspecified damages.

Motorcyclists who feel that the sentence was excessively lenient may attempt to boycott South Dakota's largest tourist event, the Sturgis Motorcycle Rally."

Poll Results

Poll Results

Friday, March 26, 2004

Slashdot | What Would The World Be Like Without Microsoft?

Slashdot | What Would The World Be Like Without Microsoft?: "Seriously, you'd be hard pressed to find a more unscrupulous group than building developers. Because of the incorporation techniques that they use, getting sued is essentially no problem. They hide behind the corporate veil and just declare bankruptcy for the shell corporation that built that 30 story condo building that now leaks like a sieve. That's if the company hasn't been wound down by the time the problem crops up."

The Spread of the Witty Worm - CAIDA : ANALYSIS : security : witty

The Spread of the Witty Worm - CAIDA : ANALYSIS : security : witty: "Network Telescope

The UCSD Network Telescope consists of a large piece of globally announced IPv4 address space. The telescope contains almost no legitimate hosts, so inbound traffic to nonexistent machines is always anomalous in some way. Because the network telescope contains approximately 1/256th of all IPv4 addresses, we receive roughly one out of every 256 packets sent by an Internet worm with an unbiased random number generator. Because we are uniquely situated to receive traffic from every worm-infected host, we provide a global view of the spread of Internet worms."

The Spread of the Witty Worm - CAIDA : ANALYSIS : security : witty

The Spread of the Witty Worm - CAIDA : ANALYSIS : security : witty


Prothon: "Python is a interpreted language with object-oriented features that is practical, powerful, and fun to program at the same time. Over time capabilities have been added to the core Python language, while compatibility with earlier versions has been maintained, and Python has became loaded with features, some quite complex. The metaclass is an example of a recent feature addition. Even Python experts admit that metaclasses are brain-achingly complex.

Prothon is a fresh new language that gets rid of classes altogether in the same way that Self does and regains the original practical and fun sensibility of Python. This major improvement plus many minor ones make for a clean new revolutionary break in language development. Prothon is quite simple and yet offers the power of Python and Self.

Prothon is also an industrial-strength alternative to Python and Self. Prothon uses native threads and a 64-bit architecture to maximize performance in applications such as multiple-cpu hosting."

GUIdebook > Interfaces

GUIdebook > Interfaces

US politicians complaining about EU decision collected $25,000 from Microsoft

US politicians complaining about EU decision collected $25,000 from Microsoft: "A SEARCH ON the US web site has revealed that half of the 10 politicians complaining about the EU ruling on Microsoft earlier this week have received substantial contributions from the Vole." in politics data in politics data

US politicos tell European Union to get off Microsoft's back

US politicos tell European Union to get off Microsoft's back: "TEN MEMBERS of the US House of Representatives wrote a letter to the European Union's antitrust commissar yesterday more or less telling him and the EU to lay off all-American company Microsoft."

SciScoop || SciScoop - Exploring Tomorrow

SciScoop || SciScoop - Exploring Tomorrow: "That we will eventually use our burgeoning knowledge of genetics to create a new generation of super-intelligent humans is most likely a foregone conclusion. But researchers at Duke University may have already found a much simpler method to create superbabies. According to their news release, providing supplements of the important nutrient choline to animals in utero 'super-charged' their brains, making their neurons larger and faster at firing electrical 'signals' that release memory-forming chemicals. Choline is a naturally occurring nutrient found in egg yolks, milk, nuts, fish, liver and other meats as well as in human breast milk. It is the essential building block for the memory-forming brain chemical acetylcholine and it plays a vital role in the formation of cell membranes throughout the body. The implications of this study for humans are profound because the collective data on choline suggests that simply augmenting the diets of pregnant women with this one nutrient could affect their children's lifelong learning and memory. In theory, choline could boost cognitive function, diminish age-related memory decline, and reduce the brain's vulnerability toxic insults."

Headlines@Hopkins: Johns Hopkins University News Releases

Headlines@Hopkins: Johns Hopkins University News Releases: "Student Builds Micro Biosensor Chip to
Move DNA Molecules
Device Could Help Diagnose Illnesses and Detect Biohazards

A Johns Hopkins undergraduate has constructed a new type of microchip that can move and isolate DNA and protein molecules. He believes that by linking the chip with analysis equipment, a user could identify medical ailments, monitor a patient's health or detect viruses and other biohazards before they spread."

Thursday, March 25, 2004 - Candidates on the Issues - Candidates on the Issues

War criminal to probe mass murder Ex-Senator Bob Kerrey appointed to 9/11 panel

War criminal to probe mass murder Ex-Senator Bob Kerrey appointed to 9/11 panel: Last month, Cleland denounced the agreement reached between the White House and the commission’s leadership to severely limit access to documents that are key to determining what the administration knew about the threat of terrorist attacks before September 11.

The deal, accepted by the panel’s chairman, former New Jersey Republican Governor Thomas Keane, and Democratic Vice-Chairman Lee Hamilton, a former congressman from Indiana, governs access to Presidential Daily Briefs. These are daily summaries of US intelligence reports provided to the president.

According to press reports, one of these briefs, issued on August 6, 2001—a month before some 3,000 people were killed at the World Trade Center and the Pentagon—warned the White House of plans by Al Qaeda to mount terrorist attacks using hijacked airplanes.

Rather than issuing subpoenas demanding the full panel’s unrestricted access to these crucial documents, the leadership of the panel agreed to a rigged procedure in which only one commissioner and one staff member will be allowed to review selected portions of the briefs and write summaries of them, with the White House then vetting the final material, removing whatever it sees fit.

“If this decision stands, I, as a member of the commission, cannot look any American in the eye, especially family members of victims, and say the commission had full access,” Cleland said following the announcement of the deal. “This investigation is now compromised.... This is ‘The Gong Show;’ this isn’t protection of national security.”

Bob Kerrey Biography

Bob Kerrey Biography

Behind the Headlines

Behind the Headlines: "For this, Kerrey received a Bronze Medal: 'I never bragged about it,' he avers, and I suppose for that we ought to be grateful. The ex-Senator from Nebraska has changed his story several times, but Klann has been consistent: he and the rest of 'Kerrey's Raiders' committed a war crime in in Thanh Phong, and this would appear to be legally as well as morally correct. The rules of warfare acknowledged by the US absolutely forbid the killing of unarmed noncombatants, especially prisoners. The irony here is that, for alleged crimes such as these, Radovan Karadizc and other Serbian 'war criminals' (including Slobodan Milosevic, the ex-leader of Yugoslavia) have been indicted by the self-sanctified 'International Criminal Tribunal' for war crimes in the former Yugoslavia, and arrest warrants have been issued. But who will go up to the New School and slap the handcuffs on Kerrey?"

Skeptical News

Skeptical News: "In principle, there is nothing whatsoever wrong in the agenda of science studies: modern science is not a sacred form of knowledge that cannot be examined skeptically. Science and scientists must welcome a skeptical look at their enterprise from social critics. The problem with science studies comes in their refusal to grant that modern science has evolved certain distinctive methods (e.g., controlled experiments and double-blind studies) and distinctive social practices (e.g., peer review, reward structures that favor honesty and innovation) which promote a higher degree of self-correction of evidence, and ensure that methodological assumptions that scientists make themselves have independent scientific support. Science studies start with the un-objectionable truism that modern science is as much a social process as any other local knowledge. But using radically relativist interpretations of Thomas Kuhn's work of science as a paradigm-bound activity, science studies scholars invariably end up taking a relativist position. They argue, in essence, that what constitutes relevant evidence for a community of scientists will vary with their material/social and professional interests, their social values including gender ideologies, religious faith, and with their culturally grounded standards of rationality and success. Thus, scientists with different social backgrounds, from different cultures and from different historical periods, literally live in different worlds: the sciences of modern western societies are not any more 'true' or 'rational' than the sciences of other cultures. If modern science claims to be universal, that is because Western culture has tried to impose itself on the rest of the world through imperialism.

This, in a nut-shell, is the state of scholarship in science studies. It carries a reasonable idea too far. Its skepticism regarding science is so radical that it does not allow any distinctions between science and superstition. No wonder it excites great passion among supporters and detractors. While science studies practitioners see themselves as brave iconoclasts, those of us who have criticized the field see it as promoting an 'anything goes' kind of relativism which helps no one.

This, then, is the contentious history behind the conference that I was invited to. This conference was a kind of stock-taking of the influence of science studies on the larger society. In keeping with its tradition of extreme charity toward all sciences, this gathering came up with a generous and inclusive definition of who belongs to science studies. Sheila Jasanoff, doyenne of science studies, formerly from Cornell and now at Harvard, told the gathering that whoever sees the world through the conceptual framework of science studies, is a part of the science studies community, and has a claim on the discipline. All those, in other words, who see the content of science as a 'co-construct' of the dominant interests and values of their respective cultures, are part of this movement of science studies, regardless of whether they are located in the academy or in the world and the polity outside.

But when I pointed out to the gathering that by this definition, the growing movements of religious fundamentalisms in all major faiths also deserve to be admitted to the guild of science studies, the suggestion was not well received. After all, I argued, the contemporary religious political movements use social constructivist arguments when they put aside whatever scientific theory conflicts with their religious faith, as a social construct of godless, Western secular-humanist atheists who have been ruling world since the Enlightenment. Moreover, I argued, if all sciences alike are social constructs, then why shouldn't the 'sacred sciences' propagated by religious fundamentalist movements be admitted as bona fide 'local knowledges' or 'standpoint epistemologies' of the community of believers?

I was not being facetious, nor was I stoking the 'science wars' when I suggested that there was a dangerous convergence - unintended, surely, but not entirely coincidental - between the social constructivist views of science routinely taught in science studies, women's studies, postcolonial studies and allied disciplines, and the views of those who defend creation science, Islamic sciences, or, as in the case of India, Vedic sciences. The point I was making was not that the foot-soldiers of religious fundamentalist movements are sitting and poring over the works of David Bloor, Bruno Latour, Donna Haraway or even of that great simplifier, Sandra Harding. They are not - although the more sophisticated among them do cite the classic works of (a hugely misinterpreted) Thomas Kuhn, Paul Feyerabend, and those of local post-colonial and feminist scholars who have popularized the social constructivist critiques of objective knowledge and reason at home. I wanted to show how the promotion of an anti-secularist, anti-Enlightenment view of the world by well-meaning and largely left-wing scholars in world-renowned centers of learning has ended up affirming a view of the world which constitutes the common sense of the rather malign, authoritarian and largely right-wing fundamentalist movements. I wanted to show that that having invested so deeply in anti-modernist and anti-rationalist philosophies, the academic left has no intellectual resources left with which to engage the religious right."

Empire Notes

Empire Notes

Empire Notes

Empire Notes: "At the same time, the United States is cementing its rule over Iraq through a little-noticed provision in the interim constitution (thanks to blogger Nathan Newman for mentioning this first). Clause A of Article 26 says

Except as otherwise provided in this Law, the laws in force in Iraq on 30 June 2004 shall remain in effect unless and until rescinded or amended by the Iraqi Transitional Government in accordance with this Law.

The Iraqi Transitional Government will not come into being before December 2004 and could be as late as the end of January 2005 (it requires elections for the National Legislative Assembly). These laws include the blatantly illegal Order 39, which allows for privatization of a host of Iraqi companies (it excludes natural resources). Naomi Klein's got a new column about it.

You can't really debate any longer whether a continuing military occupation coupled with a closely held puppet government were the primary goals of the war on Iraq. Personally, I've always maintained that privatization of Iraq's oil is secondary to the political control over the oil that comes from integrating Iraq very tightly into the U.S. military-imperial network. But anyway, it's all in the papers. No need to refer to the historical record, make inferences, draw conclusions -- just open the newspaper."

: "Or consider the case of Tony Oppegard and Jack Spadaro, members of a team of federal geodesic engineers selected to investigate the collapse of barriers that held back a coal slurry pond in Kentucky containing toxic wastes from mountaintop strip-mining. The 300-million-gallon spill was the largest in American history and, according to the EPA, the greatest environmental catastrophe in the history of the Eastern United States. Black lava-like toxic sludge containing sixty poisonous chemicals choked and sterilized up to 100 miles of rivers and creeks and poisoned the drinking water in seventeen communities. Unlike in other slurry disasters, no one died, but hundreds of residents were sickened by contact with contaminated water.

The investigation had broad implications for the viability of mountaintop mining, which involves literally lopping off mountaintops to get access to the underlying coal. It is a process beloved by coal barons because it practically dispenses with the need for human labor and thus increases industry profits. Spadaro, the nation's leading expert on slurry spills, recalls, 'We were geotechnical engineers determined to find the truth. We simply wanted to get to the heart of the matter "

: "The Bush Administration's first instinct when it comes to science has been to suppress, discredit or alter facts it doesn't like. Probably the best-known case is global warming. Over the past two years the Administration has done this to a dozen major government studies on global warming, as well as to a report by the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change, in its own efforts to stall action to control industrial emissions. The list also includes major long-term studies by the federal government's National Research Council and National Academy of Sciences, and by scientific teams at the EPA, the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration and NASA, and a 2002 collaborative report by scientists at all three of those agencies."


Florida...Again?: "He made a decision right there and then to do something about it. Already a political rep for a local baggage handlers union, he decided that Step One was to run for President of the Southern Florida AFL-CIO. Four years later, now 48 and having already achieved that first goal--twice, to be exact--he's embarked on Step Two: to do everything in his power and that of his 150,000 members to defeat George W. Bush--and by a whole lot more than a contested 537 votes.

As staffers bustle around outside his office, rushing to get out the federation's first round of targeted political mailers (six months earlier than usual), Frost brims with confidence. President Bush has had a pleasingly lousy month, battered in the polls by missing WMDs, missing National Guard records and missing jobs. 'I'm more optimistic as each day goes by,' Frost says, slapping his desk. 'I've never felt so much enthusiasm coming from the unions.' And not just from the unions. Liberal and progressive activists, civil rights groups and community organizers are eagerly girding for yet another Battle Royal in Florida this November. 'This is going to be a fierce, fierce fight,' says former Democratic state chair Bob Poe, 'just like it was in 2000.'

Florida remains, by all accounts, the most evenly divided state in a deeply polarized America. 'Florida is 40/40--40 percent Democratic, 40 percent Republican, with that 20 percent swing vote in the middle, and most of that in the middle of the state just full of registered Independents and ticket-splitters,' says Congressman Alcee Hastings, who describes his home state as the New Peoria. 'We now so closely mirror America that national marketers use our central corridor for consumer testing. In November it's going to come down again to every single vote.'"

: "The Junk Science of George W. Bush
By Robert F. Kennedy, Jr., The Nation
February 26, 2004

As Jesuit schoolboys studying world history we learned that Copernicus and Galileo self-censored for many decades their proofs that the earth revolved around the sun and that a less restrained heliocentrist, Giordano Bruno, was burned alive in 1600 for the crime of sound science. With the encouragement of our professor, Father Joyce, we marveled at the capacity of human leaders to corrupt noble institutions. Lust for power had caused the Catholic hierarchy to subvert the church's most central purpose " Democracy in Action Democracy in Action (Powered by Invision Power Board) (Powered by Invision Power Board) -> Bush Administration Distorts Science. . . -> Bush Administration Distorts Science. . .: "For example, the panel that advises the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention on lead poisoning was recently planning to strengthen the lead poisoning regulations, in response to science showing that smaller amounts than previously understood could cause brain damage in children, Knobloch said.

Before the panel could act, Secretary of Health and Human Services Tommy Thompson rejected the recommendation and replaced two members of the panel with individuals tied to the lead industry, Knobloch said. "

Marburger said he wasn't familiar with the details of the panel changes, "but I'm pretty sure there were other reasons for making changes on the panel," he said. "I think there are reasonable explanations for nearly all the things in the report, and rather than look for what those explanations might be, I think the (researchers were) somewhat biased in favor of a sweeping opinion of what this administration is all about, and I just don't think that's justified."

The researchers also took issue with a White House Office of Management and Budget bulletin regarding peer review, a process fundamental to science by which researchers check each other's work for accuracy and balance before it's published. The bulletin (PDF), drafted in August 2003, would allow the government to hand-pick scientists to second-guess scientific research, opponents say. - Bush's Dark Age: The End of Science - Bush's Dark Age: The End of Science: "Part II, begins with a quote: 'The real issue here is that we are
allowing scientific advisory committees to be contaminated by people
who have clear bias, clear financial conflicts that will not allow
them to make unbiased scientific decisions.' This was written by Dr.
Bruce Lanphear, Director of the Children's Environmental Health
Center at Cincinnati Children's Hospital Medical Center. The highly
qualified Lanphear's nomination to an advisory committee had been
scuttled by the Bush administration. His replacement was an
unqualified industrial 'scientist' who was not concerned about the
dangers to children of high levels of lead and mercury."

The Republic :: It's how the dark ages got their start

The Republic :: It's how the dark ages got their start: "A Massachusetts Institute of Technology-based organization representing over 100,000 American scientists and citizens last week issued a grave report charging that the Bush administration is routinely corrupting scientific information to achieve partisan political aims.

The Union of Concerned Scientists (USC), formed in 1969 at MIT to combat the misuse of scientific information by policy makers at all levels of government, wrote that 'the administration is distorting and censoring scientific findings that contradict its policies [and] manipulating the underlying science to align results with predetermined political decisions.'

The accusation is not made lightly, nor is it fired off from the fringes. On the contrary, the list of signatories to the statement include 20 Nobel Laureates and 19 National Medal of Science winners, including a former chief scientist at IBM, the Dean of the Faculty of Medicine at Columbia University, a former Science Advisor to the President, and a former president of the California Institute of Technology.

The organization received numerous reports from scientists working at federal government institutions alleging that 'the Bush administration has suppressed or distorted the scientific analyses of federal agencies to bring these results in line with administration policy.' The USC investigated the charges by reviewing the public record, obtaining government documents, and interviewing the parties involved, including many current and former government officials.

The resulting 46-page report entitled Scientific Integrity in Policymaking: An investigation into the Bush Administration's Misuse of Science, makes for bedtime reading more frightening than anything Stephen King has ever dreamt up. The four main findings are these: 'There is a well-established pattern of suppression and distortion of scientific findings by high-ranking Bush' officials in the critical fields of air pollutants, heat-trapping emissions, reproductive health, drug-resistant bacteria, endangered species, forest health, and military intelligence.

There is 'a wide ranging effort to manipulate the government's scientific advisory system' including the appointing of under-qualified people to important advisory posts, and even putting non-scientists in senior positions in the president's scientific advisory staff, and 'dismissing highly qualified scientific advisors.'

Furthermore, 'There is evidence that the administration often imposes restrictions on what government scientists can say or write about 'sensitive' topics,' which is typically any topic that might 'provoke opposition from the administration's political and ideological supporters.'

And, finally, 'there is significant evidence that the scope and scale of the manipulation, suppression, and misrepresentation of science by the Bush administration is unprecedented.'

On the topic of global warming, the report is particularly damning of the Bush administration. 'Since taking office,' the report says, 'the Bush administration has consistently sought to undermine the public's understanding of the view held by the vast majority of climate scientists that human-caused emissions of carbon dioxide and other heat trapping gasses are making a discernible contribution to global warming.'"

Green Activists Fret About 'Politicized' Science

Green Activists Fret About 'Politicized' Science

Tell a Friend

Tell a Friend

Restoring the Integrity of Science

Restoring the Integrity of Science

"The United States has an impressive history of investing in the capabilities and respecting the independence of scientists. This legacy has brought us sustained economic progress, science-based public health policy, and unequaled scientific leadership within the global community. However, actions by the Bush administration threaten to undermine this legacy, and as a result, policy decisions are being made that have serious consequences for our health, safety, and environment."

Across a broad range of issues—from childhood lead poisoning and mercury emissions to climate change, reproductive health, and nuclear weapons—the administration is distorting and censoring scientific findings that contradict its policies; manipulating the underlying science to align results with predetermined political decisions; and undermining the independence of science advisory panels by subjecting panel nominees to political litmus tests that have little or no bearing on their expertise; nominating non-experts or underqualified individuals from outside the scientific mainstream or with industry ties; as well as disbanding science advisory committees altogether.

SciScoop || SciScoop - Exploring Tomorrow

SciScoop || SciScoop - Exploring Tomorrow: "The origin of AIDS is a deep scientific mystery. Millions of slaves were removed from Africa for hundreds of years until the mid-19th Century and not one of them exhibited a single case of AIDS. Then, in the mid-20th Century, something happened and multiple strains of AIDS showed up in humanity all at once."

J-Track 3D

J-Track 3D

Rockets and Boosters

Rockets and Boosters

SciScoop || SciScoop - Exploring Tomorrow

SciScoop || SciScoop - Exploring Tomorrow

TSC Conducts Successful Laser Propulsion Demonstration For Air Force

TSC Conducts Successful Laser Propulsion Demonstration For Air Force

TDK Showcases 23.3GB Blue Laser 'Pro-Type' Disc

TDK Showcases 23.3GB Blue Laser 'Pro-Type' Disc

ScienceDaily News Release: There Be Dragons: New Deep-sea Predator Species Discovered

ScienceDaily News Release: There Be Dragons: New Deep-sea Predator Species Discovered: "FT. PIERCE, Fla. -- Dr. Tracey Sutton, a fish ecologist at the HARBOR BRANCH Oceanographic Institution in Ft. Pierce, Fla., has discovered a new species in a bizarre and elusive family of deep-sea predatory fish known collectively as dragonfish. The find, reported in the current issue of the journal Copeia, is the first new dragonfish species discovered in more than a decade."

ScienceDaily News Release: Another Twist In The Field Of Superconductivity

ScienceDaily News Release: Another Twist In The Field Of Superconductivity: "MONTREAL, CANADA -- Researchers at the U.S. Department of Energy's Brookhaven National Laboratory have discovered an interesting type of electronic behavior in a recently discovered class of superconductors known as cobalt oxides, or cobaltates. These materials operate quite differently from other oxide superconductors, namely the copper oxides (or cuprates), which are commonly referred to as high-temperature superconductors."

ScienceDaily News Release: Chemists Report The Most Sophisticated Artificial Nanomachine Yet

ScienceDaily News Release: Chemists Report The Most Sophisticated Artificial Nanomachine Yet: UCLA supramolecular chemists report in the journal Science an artificial molecular machine that functions like a nanoelevator.

"'Such nanoscale robotic devices could find use in slow-release drug delivery systems and in the control of chemical reactions within nanofluidic systems conducted in laboratories on a chip,' said Jovica Badjic, the lead author of the March 19 Science article and postdoctoral researcher in the laboratory of Fraser Stoddart, holder of the Fred Kavli Chair in nanosystems sciences and director of the California NanoSystems Institute at UCLA."

ScienceDaily News Release: 'Fab Five' Make Rare Appearance In Night Sky

ScienceDaily News Release: 'Fab Five' Make Rare Appearance In Night Sky: "Like a busy urban family, planets rarely get together all at once. Later this month, however, the five so-called naked-eye planets - Mercury, Venus, Mars, Jupiter and Saturn - will reunite in the night sky, giving spectators a unique chance to see Earth's closest companions in one easy sitting."

ScienceDaily News Release: Standing Body Of Water Left Its Mark In Mars Rocks

ScienceDaily News Release: Standing Body Of Water Left Its Mark In Mars Rocks: "NASA's Opportunity rover has demonstrated some rocks on Mars probably formed as deposits at the bottom of a body of gently flowing saltwater."

ScienceDaily News Release: First Protein Difference Between Humans And Primates That Correlates To Anatomical Changes In Early Hominid Fossil Record

ScienceDaily News Release: First Protein Difference Between Humans And Primates That Correlates To Anatomical Changes In Early Hominid Fossil Record: "In an effort to find the remaining genes that govern myosin--the major contractile protein that makes up muscle tissue--researchers at the University of Pennsylvania School of Medicine have made a discovery that may be central to answering key questions about human evolution."

JC's: Programming Projects: Main

JC's: Programming Projects: Main

Chip Company Game Project

Chip Company Game Project: "We develop a game where the player manages a chip company.
He/she will be responsible for general management, research & development, finance, sales, marketing and more.

The programming language will be Java. That offers the possibility to provide the game online.
It will have difficulty levels and different weighting of control to satisfy players with different interests."

Re: Still would like to see HT* -- Ace's Hardware - General Message Board

Re: Still would like to see HT* -- Ace's Hardware - General Message Board:

"Re: Still would like to see HT*
By NoSpammer on Wednesday, March 24, 2004 12:41 PM EST

> I've personally decided that the problem is Windows XPs scheduler
> to be honest. There is no way a decent operating system should
> let a single app starve out other applications, and core
> OS stuff like the frickin' mouse pointer.

Exactly. On win2k a lowest priority task can page out all other stuff by banging on the file system (even when using all the right flags to open the files in streaming read-once mode). I have to try it on XP, but I wouldn't be surprised if the same happens. "

Sony Global - Press Release

Sony Global - Press Release

Court Case Poses Challenge to Scientology Tax Break

Court Case Poses Challenge to Scientology Tax Break: "The judges in the original Sklar case said 'it appears to be true' that Scientology - founded by L. Ron Hubbard, the science fiction writer, in the 1950's - received preferential tax treatment in violation of the First Amendment.

'Why is Scientology training different from all other religious training?' Judge Barry D. Silverman wrote in his opinion, adding that the question would not be answered just then because the court was not faced with the question of whether 'members of the Church of Scientology have become the I.R.S.'s chosen people.' Judge Silverman then recommended litigation to address whether the government is improperly favoring one religion.

'If the I.R.S. does in fact give preferential treatment to members of the Church of Scientology - allowing them a special right to claim deductions that are contrary to law and disallowed to everybody else - then the proper course of action is a lawsuit to put a stop to that policy,' Judge Silverman wrote."

Tuesday, March 23, 2004

ScienceDaily News Release: 'Library On A Slide': Whole Genome Microarrays For Comparative Genomics

ScienceDaily News Release: 'Library On A Slide': Whole Genome Microarrays For Comparative Genomics: "up to 30,000 whole genomes are printed on a single slide, is described in the journal BMC Microbiology this week. The 'Library on a Slide' will help researchers compare the genetic make up of large numbers of bacterial strains to discover which genes are responsible for causing disease."

BT Internet-Yahoo customer told to get borked

BT Internet-Yahoo customer told to get borked

I was one of those who were slightly disturbed to hear last month from BT that "Your email service will also be upgraded" as part of their collaboration with Yahoo.

My BTInternet email has now been inaccessible since at least Friday 12th March. On that evening I thought "ho hum, a little server problem, I'll try again later." When I couldn't get through the next day, I tried searching for a number on their site that I could phone.

Aha! No easily findable numbers. I guess BT doesn't really believe that "It's good to talk" after all. (See if you can easily find a number off either or . See, I told you.)

So, I called in the help of Google. They found a number for me in "Customer Relations". I called it, pressed various buttons and ended up speaking to someone who was, I suspect, in India. I have absolutely no problems speaking to someone in India in principle. In practice, this phone line was so poor that it was difficult for me to hear them and vice versa. A lot of the time was spent by each of us asking the other to repeat what had just been said. Over the next hour I worked my way through most of their support, constantly checking the settings in Outlook Express - and finding that they were correct - and regularly assuring people at the end of the line that no, I hadn't changed anything on my email. Eventually, after literally an hour, I was speaking to someone in Canada who told me that this was "a known problem" that they were working on. He also gave me a number I could call that would tell me how things were progressing.

It's not clear to me why it took an hour to get this point on a known problem. Do they employ the Bastard Operator From Hell, perhaps?

Over the next week, I kept checking in. Still no resolution, even though towards the end of the week the news of the problem disappeared from their helpline. But - and I had to laugh through my increasing frustration - their status line (0800-169-0199) assures you that "BT Internet Services has an ongoing commitment to providing a positive experience" to its customers. Thank heavens they are not out to annoy us.

I also emailed the customer complaints line, with full details. You will be startled to hear that they have not come back to me.

Then, last Friday, my brother in South Africa phoned to say that an email sent to my btinternet address had bounced with the error

"554 delivery error: dd This user doesn't have a account ( [-9] -"

So on Saturday morning I phoned in again. The same poor quality line got me through to the same call centre where they couldn't hear me all that well but after just over 15 minutes realised that I had a problem. They assured me that they would put me through to "2nd level support" who would help. Second level support took another 10-15 minutes to decide that this was a known problem.

No, they couldn't fix it.
No, they couldn't tell me when it would be fixed.
No, they couldn't go back to doing things in the old way. I was going to get a new, improved service whether I like it or not. Eventually.
No, they wouldn't be giving me a refund.
No, they couldn't tell me how many of my emails they'd bounced or who the lost emails had come from.
No, I couldn't speak to anyone more senior. It was 3am in Edmonton and they don't have senior people awake at night.

OK, I said. When someone senior wakes up, could they give me a call? Staggeringly, the answer was "yes" and they took down my mobile number.

No-one phoned me on Saturday.
No-one phoned on Sunday.
But on Monday I got a phone call. It was 10.15 at night and I had just gone to sleep, being an early riser. It was "Brian", who pretty aggressively refused to give me his surname. And in no uncertain terms he told me that

- the service was broken
- they didn't know when it would be fixed
- they could not fall back to the previous system
- I wouldn't be getting a refund
- I could NOT speak to anyone more senior
- in no circumstances would he raise my concerns with his management

The term "yahoo" was coined by Jonathan Swift in Gulliver's Travels to mean a boor and after my phone call last night I understand what he was getting at. Brian was quite the rudest person I have ever spoken to at a supplier. He raised disdain and contempt for the customer to a new and unique peak and I did wonder whether just possibly it might have crossed his mind that he might be waking me up.

Now email isn't that tricky. I've been using it for about a quarter of a century. If Yahoo can't do it for BT then perhaps BT should have a go at doing it without Yahoo. I really do not want to speak to another Yahooligan, whether they are in India, Canada or anywhere else.

I just want my email back. Can ANYONE tell me when this might happen?


Monday, March 22, 2004

The New Zealand Weta - Home

The New Zealand Weta - Home: "The weta is an amazing insect, found not just in New Zealand but also in South Africa, Australia, and South America. Although not unique to New Zealand, the weta is found here in its largest forms. Here it is able to grow lengths of up to 90mm and weighs up to 70grams. The weta exists in almost every habitat that New Zealand has to offer, from the warm sandy climates of Northland to the alpine environments of the Southern Alps, displaying true diversity."

Motion Induced Blindness

Motion Induced Blindness

Alien Dice - It's JUST a game,.. really.

Alien Dice - It's JUST a game,.. really.

The Archives are here!...actually, they've been here...

The Archives are here!...actually, they've been here...

Chasing the Sunset - Fantasy Webcomic

Chasing the Sunset - Fantasy Webcomic

Sunday, March 21, 2004

Linux Today - Editor's Note: Blocked Sites and Fair Use

Linux Today - Editor's Note: Blocked Sites and Fair Use: "By Brian Proffitt
Managing Editor

There was a problem that occured on Linux Today this afternoon that I feel obliged to explain.

Early this morning, I posted a story from the Information Week Web site entitled, 'Massachusetts Builds Open-Source Public Trough.' The link to the story was contributed by long-time contributor Jason Greenwood. I surfed to the article, read it, and deemed it worthy for excerpting and linking from our site. I constructed the story and posted it, timing it to run at 1730 GMT (1230 EST).

What I did not know, and did not learn until late this afternoon, was that the publisher of Information Week, CMP Media LLC (a division of United Business Media plc), had apparently decided to block incoming links from Linux Today. I did not realize this because when I linked to the story directly from my system in Indianapolis, there was no block. (Nor, apparently, did Mr. Greenwood get blocked.)

Clearly, this is a block designed specifically for referring sites such as Linux Today. (Though, curiously, a link on NewsForge to the same story that has the exact same excerpt is currently allowed to go through unimpeded.)"

Geocaching - The Official Global GPS Cache Hunt Site

Geocaching - The Official Global GPS Cache Hunt Site

F5 Networks - BIG-IP - Application Traffic Management

F5 Networks - BIG-IP - Application Traffic Management Your Internet Store Your Internet Store

Minuet Frequently Asked Questions

Minuet Frequently Asked Questions

Slashdot: News for nerds, stuff that matters

Slashdot: News for nerds, stuff that matters: "Posted by timothy on Sunday March 21, @06:38AM
from the you-have-nothing-to-fear dept.
bpiltz writes 'A funk band in Harrisonburg, VA, called Midnight Spaghetti, has posted a story with photos about a newly installed Diebold Opteva 520 ATM at Carnegie Mellon University that crashed, then rebooted. The Windows XP operating system initialized without the actual ATM software. The result was a public desktop computer, with only a touch screen interface, left wide open for the amusement of the students at the most wired university in the U.S. Interestingly, Diebold is one of the leading manufacturers of e-voting machines.'"

Saturday, March 20, 2004 - Budget director axed from budget - Feb. 22, 2003 - Budget director axed from budget - Feb. 22, 2003: "JEFFERSON CITY, Missouri (AP) -- In its zeal to save money, a Republican-led Missouri House committee inadvertently cut Missouri's budget director out of next year's budget.

The oversight was caught and funding for her position was restored Thursday."

Kumquat's musings : Technology and Collaboration

Kumquat's musings : Technology and Collaboration: "Rating systems create goals based on an artificial game, rather than the fluid needs of a real community. Measuring performance in a clearly defined task is difficult. The open-ended innovation communities introduce myriad complexities that would only be misdirected by behaviors introduced by the rating system."

Kumquat's musings : Technology and Collaboration

Kumquat's musings : Technology and Collaboration

Where is Raed ?

Where is Raed ?

RIAA Radar Charts: RIAA Radar Indie 100

RIAA Radar Charts: RIAA Radar Indie 100: "RIAA Radar Charts: RIAA Radar Indie 100
The 100 highest-selling albums on that are RIAA-safe. Updated every day."

The ChangeLog

The ChangeLog: "The cloud monitor tracks or crawls other interesting web sites and displays their latest modification dates. It acts as a link watcher such that you can keep an eye on the other sites in the cloud."

Quick and Easy IPv6 for Debian - The ChangeLog

Quick and Easy IPv6 for Debian - The ChangeLog: "A lot of people have asked about IPv6 in Debian. There have been some instructions floating around, but all of them I've seen are overly complex. Here's how to set up your own 6to4 tunnel in about 5 minutes (assuming your kernel is IPV6-ready), without the need of freenet6 or any other tunnel broker. You need only a real IP address (static is best) and a basic understanding of IPv6 to proceed. This article will configure your host or your router.

These instructions set you up with 6to4, which requires no outside tunnel broker. However, there are not many 6to4 routers out there. If you are connecting to other non-6to4 sites, chances are god that performance will not be good. This is not a flaw in IPv6 itself. I suggest setting up 6to4 first, since it is fairly easy; once you have it working, then move on to others if you like.

First, you need to obtain an IPV6-ready kernel. I strongly recommend 2.6.1 or above if possible. Check the IPv6 kernel system check page to make sure your kernel is IPV6-ready, and for info on compiling a new kernel if not. In addition to basic IPv6, I also recommend that you compile in IPv6 netfilter support."

HOWTO Setup an IPv6 Masquerade/NAT Box Under Debian Through IPv4 - Debian Planet

HOWTO Setup an IPv6 Masquerade/NAT Box Under Debian Through IPv4 - Debian Planet: "This is my take on setting up IPv6 on a Debian system acting as a NAT/masquerade box on an IPv4 network with Windows XP and Linux clients. I have tried to make this document as comprehensive and easy to follow as possible. Hopefully, this is the best guide to date that addresses this topic. With this document, you can be up and running with IPv6 in under 10 minutes.

If there are any comments, additions, suggestions, etc, please let me know at"

XS4ALL Internet B.V.

XS4ALL Internet B.V.

Dynamic DNS, Static DNS for Your Dynamic IP

Dynamic DNS, Static DNS for Your Dynamic IP: " is a leading dynamic DNS service provider. We offer a wide range of services pertaining to your internet presence, from that pesky dynamic IP problem to getting around ISPs who block port 25. All of our services take advantage of our global network of redundant DNS and mail servers peered with tier-1 data centers. "


FREENET6 TSP: "Tunnel Setup Protocol

Freenet6's TSP facilitates a faster deployment of the Internet IPv6. Currently, the Internet is world-wide deployed over IPv4, therefore Freenet6 helps to deploy IPv6 at a larger scale by using configured tunnels.

Configured tunnel is a transitional method standardized by the IETF to use IPv6 in coexistence with IPv4 by encapsulating IPv6 packets over IPv4. Any host already connected to the Internet IPv4and having an IPv6 stack could establish link to the Internet IPv6.

Freenet6 was the first public tunnel server service. It is one of the most used in the world to delegate automatically one single IPv6 address to any host already connected to an IPv4 network over configured tunnel simply by filling a Web form and running a script. Freenet6's TSP is representing another very important step to accelerate the deployment at large scale of IPv6 to everyone on the net.

Instead of a Web interface to request configured tunnels and IPv6 addresses, Freenet6's TSP is a new model based on a client/server approach. A protocol is used to request one single IPv6 address to a full IPv6 prefix from a client to a tunnel server according to the IPv6 broker model. The protocol could be integrated directly into the operating system to give a service like DHCP but for requesting IPv6 addresses or prefixes over an IPv4 network (Internet). "

Squid Web Proxy Cache

Squid Web Proxy Cache: "Squid is...

* a full-featured Web proxy cache
* designed to run on Unix systems
* free, open-source software
* the result of many contributions by unpaid (and paid) volunteers

Squid supports...

* proxying and caching of HTTP, FTP, and other URL's
* proxying for SSL
* cache hierarchies
* ICP, HTCP, CARP, Cache Digests
* transparent caching
* WCCP (Squid v2.3 and above)
* extensive access controls
* HTTP server acceleration
* caching of DNS lookups"

SCO targets federal supercomputer users | CNET

SCO targets federal supercomputer users | CNET

WinterSilks: Long johns, silk clothing - the ultimate winter warmth

WinterSilks: Long johns, silk clothing - the ultimate winter warmth

Friday, March 19, 2004


INSIDE SUZUKITech Writer position at Suzuki.

ohlin shock07241-02.pdf (application/pdf Object)

ohlin shock07241-02.pdf (application/pdf Object) Owners Manual for Ohlins shock absorbers.

Monday, March 15, 2004

Milton C. Newman's Journal

Milton C. Newman's Journal Live journal of a dead guy.

CATPRIN - Tailor for Cats

CATPRIN - Tailor for Cats Horror; dear god can there be such things in this world?

Friday, March 12, 2004

Sunday, March 07, 2004

: "What will you do if you need a 4GB microdrive desperately while nowhere in Hong Kong is selling it yet?

I have bought a Creative Nomad 4GB MuVo2.

I guess no one tried this before.

SCO media circus turns into a mad carnival

SCO media circus turns into a mad carnival: "LAST WEEK the one-year anniversary of The SCO Group (nee Caldera) assault on Linux passed unnoticed. SCO launched a lawsuit against IBM on March 3, 2003. But nobody noted this sour anniversary because there were new acts appearing last week in SCO's mad carnival of alternate reality: two new lawsuits, quarterly financial results, a new Court Order, plus a smoking gun memo revealing that Microsoft is bankrolling SCO's play."

Friday, March 05, 2004

Tuesday, March 02, 2004

?????????? ????????????? BeOS

?????????? ????????????? BeOS

The BeOSJournal ~ #726 ~ Confessions of a Latter-Day BeOS Convert.

The BeOSJournal ~ #726 ~ Confessions of a Latter-Day BeOS Convert.:

"BeOS was just one of a number of operating systems that I tried to obtain and investigate. At first, I wasn't sure how the name was spelled. Was it 'BOS'? Or 'Bee OS'? Or 'BeOS'? What was it? I had only heard the name once, a few years earlier, and had never seen it in print. In fact, at this point -- chronic amnesiac that I am -- I wasn't even entirely sure what name I had heard. Had I really heard anything like this at all?

A Google search revealed that there was (and is) an operating system called BeOS. As I learned more about it, I could scarcely believe that something seemingly so excellent could be so little known. I learned of the demise of Be, Inc., and quickly came to sense the tragedy of it. Already I had a strong distaste for all things Microsoft, and the Redmond behemoth's brutish, monopolistic behavior in snuffing out Be, Inc. by threatening its would-be OEM partners struck me as horribly unjust, if maddeningly typical. These feelings of indignation spurred me on. My general interest in 'the operating system' began to shift toward a more specific interest in BeOS."

Monday, March 01, 2004

PNG transparency test

PNG transparency test: "PNG transparency test

PNG (Portable Network Graphics) is the only Web graphic format offering alpha transparency. Here you can test, whether your browser supports this amazing feature.

There are more comprehensive PNG support tests on the web (see PNG test images), unfortunately they let you only guess what your browser does wrong. This test on the other hand consists of a single test image and a serie of reference images showing common rendering errors. You can compare how your browser renderes the test image with the reference images and easily see what it does instead of rendering the image correctly."

Edward A. Villarreal. Powered by Blogger.


Total Pageviews