P2P politics: Travis Kalanick of Scour, Redswoosh runs for CA governor

Travis Kalanick, co-founder of now-defunct P2P network Scour.net and CEO of redswoosh.com, wants to become the next governor of California -- running on what could be described as the "P2P" or "youth media" platform.

Sources close to the project say 26-year-old Kalanick plans to raise campaign funds online, and campaign compadres will include Angelo Sotira of Deviantart.com and File Front. The gubernatorial hopeful filed initial papers in Norwalk, CA Tuesday at the county clerk's office, and will be listed as an Independent. To get on the ballot and formally become a candidate, Kalanick now needs at least 65 legitimate signatures from voters also registered as Independent, plus $3500. Platform positions have yet to be announced, but reportedly may involve P2P filesharing freedom, education, and taxation the economy.

Travis Kalanick for Governor Homepage, Discuss Read the rest

Qu'est-ce que un BLOG?

BoingBoing pal Jean-Luc in Paris has assembled an online dictionary of 502 French terms relating to the francophone blogosphere. Link, Discuss Read the rest

ABIT's Fritz-chip keeps the RIAA off your hard-drive

ABIT's new motherboard includes hardware crypto support -- presumably as part of participation in Trusted Computing/Palladium? -- (thanks, Wes!) and they're touting its benefits as a tool for keeping the RIAA out of your hard-drive.
For MAX3, the ABIT Engineers listened to users who were asking for information security. SecureIDE connects to your IDE hard disk and has a special decoder; without a special key, your hard disk cannot be opened by anyone. Thus hackers and would be information thieves cannot access your hard disk, even if they remove it from your PC. Protect your privacy and keep anyone from snooping into your information. Lock down your hard disk, not with a password, but with encryption. A password can be cracked by software in a few hours. ABIT's SecureIDE will keep government supercomputers busy for weeks and will keep the RIAA away from your Kazaa files.
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Onion infographic tackles RIAA lawsuits

This week's Onion infographic asks the musical question, "How are music fans responding to the RIAA lawsuits." Link Discuss Read the rest

Briefing the court on Fuck

On the Smoking Gun, a legal petition to dismiss charges against a student who called his Vice Principal a "fucking fag" on the grounds that neither word is that bad, with elaborate etymological research in support of the position. Link Discuss (via K5) Read the rest

Self-modifying hardware via distributed genetic algorithms

Sexy new distcomp project aims to evolve self-correcting hardware designs using genetic algorithms. Welcome to the non-human-readable future! We should build GAs into every compiler, just to optimize code in a way that makes it really futuristic.
Host an island with a population of circuits struggling for survival in a hostile online world. During your PCs idle time individuals from this population will evolve through a process of survival of the meekest into circuits with Built-In Self-Test (BIST) and will compete with those hosted on other PCs by migrating to and from them. These circuits will not obey conventional design rules since evolution finds efficient solutions no matter how complex to understand they are - just like it did with our own bodies and brains. You can join into this cluster in one minute by installing the client found at here. Check up on how your population is doing compared to others here and name your best creations if they enter the "better than human" hall of fame.

Self-Diagnosing Hardware is capable of detecting deviations from its normal behaviour due to faults. Self-Diagnosis is important especially in mission critical systems exposed to radiation. Built-In Self-Test (BIST) is widely used yet commonly requires more than 100% overhead or off-line testing. However the latter is unsuitable in mission critical systems such as a nuclear power station controller where we must diagnose failure immediately. In the last 40 years of BIST research, spawned by the NASA aerospace program, conventional design has not come up with a significant improvement to the voting system as an on-line BIST solution.

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SF vacancies according to Craigslist

The folks at Craigslist produce a chart showing the trends in apartment listings in the Bay Area. That's a nice, healthy curve right there -- especially from a tenant's point of view. Link Discuss (via evHead) Read the rest

Illegal Art interview videos now online

Lisa Rein is making a film about the Illegal Art Exhibit that just finished up here in San Francisco this month. She's started posting footage from this work in progress by bits and pieces:
"To start things off, here's an interview with Laura Splan, who's a local artist here in San Francisco that just got picked up for the San Francisco leg of the show (and will be staying with the show as it moves on to Philadelphia in September.) Laura created pillows of prescription pills. She's one of the local artists that got picked up by the tour here in San Francisco and her work will be included in the exhibit Here's Laura explaining why she feels she should be able to create art however she wants to."
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RIAA will take 2191.78 years to sue everyone

Silly but technically considered piece in the Inquirer (UK) today in which a reader calculates the money and time it would likely take for the RIAA to actually sue all P2P fileswappers:
She said: "I pulled out my calculator to see just how long it would take the RIAA to sue all 60 million P2P music file traders at a rate of 75 a day. 60,000,000/75 = 800,000 days to subpoena each person or 800,000 days/365 days in a year = 2191.78 years to subpoena each person". Michaela points out that it's unrealistic to suppose that the RIAA will have any money left in 2191 years, and she even wonders whether the trade association will exist then. Plus, she points out, given the rate of tech advancement, it's likely that we'll have moved on to many different types of music media in even a hundred years.
Sharman Networks (Kazaa) lobbyist Philip Corwin in DC more soberly observes, "I would venture that the RIAA strategy is based on the assumption that most of those sued will fold quickly and settle given the extraordinarily disproportionate statutory penalties that can be claimed under copyright law ($30 million for the two copyrights on each of 100 song files worth $99 retail). However, if the attorneys for the sued drag out the proceeding with motions and novel defenses (much less countersuits) the cumulative costs of prosecuting the suits could quickly drain the coffers of even a wealthy trade association." Link, Discuss (via pho) Read the rest

Flat sinks

Justin waxes eloquent about Kohler's sexy, outre and somewhat impractical new line of plumbing fixtures:
I think of a sink and I see an indent, a depression, some concave pocket in a surface that is designed to receive water and hold it for a time. Kohler has removed the bowl from the sink - there's nowhere to catch the flow. Water simply passes out from the wall, falls against a flat surface and trickles into a surrounding moat.

The sink was round and they've proven it flat. They removed soaking from the function of this sink, but when's the last time I soaked something in a sink? Actually, they do have some facility for soaking with the Puristâ„¢ Wet Surface Lavatory (K-2313) - they sell an optional Purist Hand Basin for $160.

Link Discuss (Thanks, Justin!) Read the rest

Tech docs hall of weird

Darren has started a site for collecting weird and goofy tech documentation warnings. Link Discuss Read the rest

EFF Freedom Fest, San Francisco, August 9

EFF's first annual Freedom Fest is coming up on Saturday, August 9th, from noon to 5PM in San Francisco's Golden Gate Park. This is a giant, free, outdoor concert with loads of interesting speakers and all the gratis fun you can eat.
* Box Set, the clown princes of folk rock * Noelle Hampton, award-winning rock diva * Austin Willacy, rock, pop and soul crooner * Colin McGrath, singer, strummer, arranger * Lasana Bandele, the "Storitela" from Jamaica
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Speaking at BayCHI, Palo Alto, August 12th

I'm giving a talk on civil liberties and the Web at BayCHI on August 12th, at PARC in Palo Alto. Hope to see you there!
From deep-linking (the right to give someone directions) to DRM (the right to be treated like a customer, not a criminal), civil liberties are inexorably entwined with the web. Increasingly, legal mandates are in the offing to force you to design and deploy technology that restricts what you and your users may do. Find out where these proposals are at, where they're going, and what you can do about them.
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Nano Cartoon

Josh "Nanotech Report" Wolfe posted a witty cartoon depicting the extraordinary popular delusions and madness of crowds at the birth of a tech bubble. Link Discuss   Read the rest

Newsweek's Stephen Levy: Capitol Hill P2P Prohibition craziness

In this week's edition of Newsweek, Stephen Levy reports on a Senate Judiciary Committee last week titled: "The dark side of a bright idea: Could personal and national-security risks compromise the potential of peer-to-peer file-sharing networks?"
By the end of the session, the only committee member in attendance, chairman Orrin Hatch-himself a songwriter who sells CDs on his personal Web site-zeroed in on what really bugged him: people sharing copyrighted songs on the Internet without paying for them. Then he ran an idea by one of the panelists: what if you had a system that could detect whether people were getting songs without paying for them and could warn those infringers that what they were doing was wrong? And then, if they didn't stop, the system would remotely "destroy " their computers.

"No one's interested in destroying people's computers, " said the panelist. "Well, I'm interested in doing that, "said the senator. "Warn them, do it again, and then destroy their machine! There's no excuse for anyone violating our copyright laws. "

Fortunately Senator Hatch hasn't yet codified his Dr. Strangelovean no-due-process piracy antidote into upcoming legislation. But in the House, Reps. Howard Berman and John Conyers have introduced a bill that encourages a different approach: jail 'em! Among other provisions, the bill lowers the bar for criminal prosecution to the sharing of a single music file and allocates $15 million to go after copyright offenders. Representative Berman says that he anticipates that prosecutors will go only after someone who, knowing the consequences, uploads massive amounts of music.

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Music legend Lester Chambers' album collection stolen -- call for help

From Lola Chambers, wife of Lester Chambers -- music legend, rock and soul pioneer, 1/2 of the Chambers Brothers ("Time Has Come Today", "People Get Ready," etc.):
I am truly heartbroken! My complete collection of my husband's (Lester Chambers of the Chambers Brothers) albums and 45's have been stolen from my home in Tarzana, California. This collection has taken me 25 years to collect and I had intended to pass them on to our two sons. Years before Ebay, I scoured record stores and swap meets to put this collection together. There were over 60 albums and over a hundred 45's stolen. Many were Chambers Brothers' Columbia albums released by Columbia under their many foreign labels and would be needed as proof of their non-payment of years of foreign royalties. These Columbia albums were released under Direction Records out of England, First Records out of Korea, etc. One of their 45's was released in Germany with an abstract orange coloring. Many of their 45's had photo sleeve coverings all in perfect condition. I had their complete recordings from their early years with Vault Records and one of their first albums recorded with Barbara Dane on the Folkways label. I would like to put the word out to all record stores (especially in Southern California), collectors, eBay shoppers, etc in order to try and recover these extremely sentimental albums. Please contact me at (360) 895-7877 or via attorney Lawrence Feldman, leflaw@leflaw.com.
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SEEMEN Machine art show in SF on August 1

Kal Spelletich and SEEMEN present more "Live Audience Experiments with Machines and Robots" -- two shows at 8 and 10PM in San Fran, Friday August 1 (also robotics guru and former guestblogger Karen Marcelo's birthday! W00t!). New, audience-operated machines and robots. See SEEMEN website for details -- $10 to get in. Attendance by advance e-mail reservation. Photos, more photos, Details, Discuss Read the rest

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