Archive for November, 2009

Microsoft-Murdoch: what am I missing?

November 23, 2009

So let me get this straight. Microsoft might fork over millions of dollars (that could otherwise be spent marketing/improving Windows and other proprietary offerings) to Murdoch’s News Corp. And the end result is that when I search Google, these mainstream “news” sites won’t appear in the results? Have I died and gone to heaven?

Question: When a popular news story breaks under the Microdoch/Bing umbrella, how will they block Google’s hits of bloggers linking to the story?

Free software and behavior

November 18, 2009

Pranav Mistry:

“an era where computing will actually merge with the physical world”

Very cool technology, though at 12:30 comes the most important news: Pranav claims that the software will be “open source“. Of course, we’ll have to wait and see how that plays out but this form of technology helps make clear why Free software is important to our freedom.

Software controls its users. That is, a user can only do what the user’s software is programmed to do. Computing is an extension of our behavior and communication. Sure, computers are just tools but that extension makes them very different than a hammer or a screwdriver. Perhaps it isn’t so easy to see this when the conduit of our behavior is a mouse and keyboard. Perhaps this isn’t so clear when our computing occurs only when sitting for a session on that “computer”.

So when the day comes when a computer isn’t just that device we turn on, log into, do a few tasks on, log out, and shut down…but a device that is seamlessly woven into our everyday actions, who should dictate its limits and uses?

The Christian Family Lynch Network

November 18, 2009

wants to legalize their hatred in Uganda.

an open question to Skype’s Josh Silverman

November 3, 2009

Mr. Silverman, you wrote in a post regarding TOM Online in collusion with Chinese authority to spy on and censor Skype users:

Skype-to-Skype communications are, and always have been, completely secure and private.

First, it’s my understanding that Skype is proprietary software (and not semi-free software). Please correct me if I’m mistaken. If this is true, how can users come to know that their Skype-to-Skype communications are, and always have been, completely secure and private, given that they are not privy to Skype’s source code?