Boing Boing 

Big Media's anti-pay-TV campaign from 1967

The proponents of the loathsome Broadcast Flag, which seeks to limit your ability to freely manipulate, archive and move the TV shows you record, weren't always opponents of freedom and television. Back in 1967, the TV broadcasters and the movie studios ran a propaganda campaign to defeat the early Pay TV systems. Here's a wonderful old video clip from that era, a bumper that was shown before movies urging Californians to sign a petition against Pay TV.
In 1967, when one of the first pay TV services was preparing to launch in California, Hollywood and the networks helped defeat the service because they didn't want the competition. Theater owners organized a KEEP TV FREE campaign, with PSAs like this one running in movie houses before feature films.

Though this particular campaign was limited to California, the advertising industry and television networks have long argued a similar case. When Vance Packard, Ralph Nader, Peggy Charren, and other critics attacked advertising in the 1950s, 1970s, and 1980s (respectively), defenders of industry often cited a common refrain: "advertising provides free news and entertainment."

In other words, the major networks (in conjunction with the ad industry) have promoted the idea that television is free for decades. Now that viewers have taken their word for it by recording and sharing TV shows freely, the industry only has itself to blame.

Link (Thanks, Carrie!)

Why John Gilmore won't show his ID at airports

Pittsburgh's Post-Gazette has an amazing, balanced, in-depth profile on John Gilmore, the guy who Sun hired to write their first code, the guy who co-founded EFF, the guy who won't show ID to get on an airplane:
In post 9/11 America, asking "Why?" when someone from an airline asks for identification can start some interesting arguments. Gilmore, who learned to argue on the debate team in his hometown of Bradford, McKean County, has started an argument that, should it reach its intended target, the U.S. Supreme Court, would turn the rules of national security on end, reach deep into the tug-of-war between private rights and public safety, and play havoc with the Department of Homeland Security.

At the heart of Gilmore's stubbornness is the worry about the thin line between safety and tyranny.

"Are they just basically saying we just can't travel without identity papers? If that's true, then I'd rather see us go through a real debate that says we want to introduce required identity papers in our society rather than trying to legislate it through the back door through regulations that say there's not any other way to get around," Gilmore said. "Basically what they want is a show of obedience."

Link (Thanks, Brad!)

Paying Canadian telco an extra $50 makes IRC and ftp secure, somehow

Simon sez, "It was reported in Vancouver that Canadian telecom giant Telus has outlawed home servers for its customers with residential highspeed service. Ports used by such ftp, telnet and IRC servers, among others, have been blocked. According to Telus, 'These security measures are designed to reduce illicit traffic.'

"But if home users upgrade to a business account (for $84.95 a month, rather than $29.95) the blocked ports magically become unstuck. There's no mention, however, of increased security measures in the upgraded business accounts. Interpret this how you like." Link

Stanford's anti-diversity agenda: No astrologer professors!

Aaron Swartz's Stanford diaries -- basically, the ruminations of a sharp university student's first year in the hallowed halls -- are tremendous reading. Today, he's posted a response to the talking-point that Stanford anti-intellectual-diversity because 13% of Stanford profs are Republicans, but 51% of voters in the last election swung GOP.
Scary as this is, my preliminary research has discovered some even more shocking facts. I have found that only 1% of Stanford professors believe in telepathy (defined as "communication between minds without using the traditional five senses"), compared with 36% of the general population. And less than half a percent believe "people on this earth are sometimes possessed by the devil", compared with 49% of those outside the ivory tower. And while 25% of Americans believe in astrology ("the position of the stars and planets can affect people's lives"), I could only find one Stanford professor who would agree. (All numbers are from mainstream polls, as reported by Sokal.)

This dreadful lack of intellectual diversity is a serious threat to our nation's youth, who are quietly being propagandized by anti-astrology radicals instead of educated with different points of view. Were I to discover that there were no blacks on the Stanford faculty, the Politically Correct community would be all up in arms. But they have no problem squeezing out prospective faculty members whose views they disagree with.


World's oldest Sunday paper goes gonzo for the Web

Last weekend, I stayed on the remarkably comfortable sofa of Ben Hammersely and his fantastic wife Anna Söderblom, in Florence, Italy. Florence has lots to recommend it, but possibly the most fascinating thing I saw that weekend was the project Ben was working on for the Observer, the oldest Sunday newspaper in the world. Ben has helped the Observer web-ify itself, with a vengeance.

The weekend paper is now supplemented by a daily blog, with podcasts and moblogs. The RSS is fulltext (crap, no it's not -- this is such an important detail, Observer -- get it right!). Trackbacks and comments are on and unmoderated. Keywords are tracked and displayed in a "folksonomic zeitgeist." Headlines from competing papers and Technorati link cosmoses are pulled in and displayed on the front page. No paywall. No adwall. No wall.

That's just for starters. We spent many exciting hours sitting in cafes, talking about what comes next -- conversations I'm not at liberty to repeat. But basically: put together a wish-list of features for a clued-in media organization to embrace, then square it and square it again in a relentless pursuit of Web-gonzoism. That's what's coming down the pipe.

I read a lot of newspapers on the Web, and this is something new and wonderful. Check it out. Link (via Ben Hammersley)

Subscribe to monthly, grotesque remixed stuffed animal service

Nick sez, "For $39 a month, you can receive remixed stuffed animals: bunnies with three ears, animals wrapped inside other animals, furry things that talk, packed in leaves or string or paper or whatever's on Morbid Tendencies' living room floor.

"Every animal is custom made, and you can also buy art made from real dead animals. Each page on this site is a Poe-like joy." Link (Thanks, Nick!)

HOWTO break HP printer cartridge DRM

A reader writes, "The CoCo blog has uncovered two ways to keep HP from using its forced-obsolescence-for-profit 'empty' ink cartridge trick on you:"
1) Remove and reinsert the battery of the printer's memory chip

First, I disconnected the power and the printer cable, just to be sure. Then, I reached inside and carefully removed the battery. I waited for about an hour, and then reinserted the battery and plugged everything back in. Viola! I was able to make a copy. Tried printing -- that worked too.

2) Preemptive: Change the parameters of the printer driver

Search for hp*.ini and edit the ones with the latest dates. If you configure the printer driver first, see below, the file date should read today.

In it there is a parameter something like pencheck. It is set to 0100. I think this is a boolean because I tried other values without effect. Set it to 0000 in the file and save the file and REBOOT.


Beautiful and ugly photos of London

JenH sez, "I'm heading to London soon and decided to peruse some Londonblogs, and came across some incredible photos of London and environs by a Flikr user named StefZ. Since Cory is Brit-centric these days, I thought you'd all enjoy the odd, ugly, strange and beautiful photos - amazing work." She's right -- this stuff is gorgeous. Makes me glad all over again to be living in London. Link (Thanks, jenH!)

Science fiction can make you a better Unitarian

Will Shetterly, the genius author of Dogland and many other fine novels, has written a fantastic article for a Unitarian magazine, explaining how reading science fiction and fantasy can make you a better Christian, by providing a framework for understanding how to digest and comprehend parables and fables.
These implicitly spiritual stories, just as explicitly spiritual ones, can be divided into parables and fables. Mysteries and romances, like Jesus' stories about servants, are meant to be plausible. Because the stories could be true, we can learn from Sherlock Holmes, Scarlet O'Hara, or the Good Samaritan. But fantasy and science fiction, like the stories about Jesus' miracles or divine birth, are meant to be implausible. By asking us to consider something outside our experience, like traveling in time, becoming a monster, or turning water into wine, they ask us to throw off our preconceptions and see the world as if we had never seen it before. Because it's impossible for a story to occur in our world, we know that it's about something more than its details, and we can learn from Santa Claus, Superman, or the Son of God.

As they do for many adolescents and adults, fantasy and science fiction gave me fables that were spiritual and fables that explored the desire to be spiritual. I appreciated the personal and public difficulty of promoting a faith by reading about Paul Muad'Dib in Dune and Michael Valentine Smith in Stranger in a Strange Land. Roger Zelazny's Lord of Light made me think about the nature of pantheons. As an atheist who yearned for meaning, I saw my struggle in Michael Moorcock's Behold the Man, the story of a time traveler who goes back to meet Jesus. I found answers to questions that traditional religions are reluctant to pose: James Morrow examined the literal death of the conservative Christian God in Towing Jehovah and Jesus' second coming as a woman in Only Begotten Daughter.

Link (Thanks, Tom!)

Update: Medievalist writes " in mind that Unitarian Universalism is a non- creedal religion, and that most UUs are not Christians. Thus Shetterley is writing from the perspective of a minority within both Unitarian Universalism and Christianity."

Furniture made from books

Second Editions is a Berkeley-based business run by Jim Rosenau, a software developer and carpenter. He builds furniture out of books -- mostly books ("I remove some of the paper and replace it with a sturdy armature of salvaged lumber."). The idea is to produce an urban version of the rural crafter's twig-furniture ("I envied rural craftspeople who could spend time in the woods, gathering elegant natural materials for their work. I was relegated to what I could find on the sidewalk and in Dumpsters, my head swiveling as I passed each pile of discards."). The furniture itself is gorgeous, witty and bloody useful, and produced with an eye to archiving ethics ("I research all apparently valuable books and try to place them with dealers but rarely succeed."). I want all of this. Link (Thanks, Robin!)

Listening to stalactite isotopes: a cousin to acoustic iPod hack

Yesterday, I posted about the amazing iPod acoustic hack: a hacker who wanted to deconstruct his iPod's locked-down firmware tricked the iPod into playing out the firmware through the headphones as though it were a song: then he wrote software that analyzed the "music" and turned it back into firmware.

Now, L Perg writes, "'Acoustical graphing' of 1D data streams can be very useful in scientific applications, since auditory processing is multi-channel. For example, in mass spectroscopy, an ion beam that is operating at safe levels can be represented by a low hum; as the beam strength increases -- approaching the point it will damage the detector -- the pitch and volume can increase, alerting the operator to the problem. Just think of how insanely boring and inefficient it would be to watch the same data wiggling on a computer screen.

"Of course, auditory graphing is also used to represent 1D graphs for people with visual processing disorders (vision impairment and dyslexia).

"...[I]n a moment of serendipity, I opened my email to find information on the translation of geochemical signals into music posted to a paleoclimate mailing list. As cave stalactites grow, they record changing oxygen isotope values, which correspond to the growth and decay of ice sheets. The isotope record from the Frasassi Cave in Italy has been recorded as 'Geophonic music,' available in the book and CD set 'The Drops of Time' (Gocce di Tempo) (ISBN: 2-911762-51-7)." Link (Thanks, L!)

Update: Blue Boar sez, "The iPod acoustic hack doesn't use the headphone jack, which would mean programming the sound hardware. Last I checked a few days ago, they still don't have that bit finished on the 4G and later iPods under Linux. Instead, they used the built-in piezo. This is the device that "clicks" when you are scrolling the wheel. If you hadn't noticied it before, unplug your headphones, and hold the iPod up to your ear while you scroll through a long list."

Archiving every Podcast

Jason Scott is the archvist whose contains copies of every text-file that circulated on massive world of BBSes in the pre-Internet days. He's launched a new project: archiving every single Podcast ever made. It's only 75GB so far, but growing fast. Jason's explanation of why he's decided to do this is inspiring, a call-to-arms to preserve digital culture.
Obviously, I need some space to store all these podcasts, but space, these days, is very cheap. I watch sites that provide specials for hardware, and can purchase a 250 gigabyte hard drive for $100. It's a drive type that is prone to failure, so I buy two. At home, I run these drives on USB2 enclosures, on two separate machines, and I use a program called rsync to keep them synchronized. I download podcasts using a program called doppler, which has several advantages to its approach that are useful for archiving. I have the podcasts on a network drive, so I am not beholden to a specific machine to download the podcasts. I found very quickly that Doppler Radio didn't check to see if you had pointed it to multiple copies of the same feeds (it assumes you're using such a small amount of feeds, that you would always notice the doubles yourself), so I wrote a perl script that yanked out doubles. This has held up for the time being, and while I don't have firm numbers on how much disk space per day this process is taking, I'm not too worried about it...

Podcasting certainly has its roots in zine culture, home-brew tapes, BBSes, carbon-copy SF fanzines, and telegraph. If that's too high-minded and artsy-historian, then I could point to the direct event of the fad of "Push Technology" that infected a number of companies in 1998 through to 1999. Microsoft and Netscape both claimed that Push technology would change everything, and Pointcast tried to build a business on it. Really, it was all a fine idea, but the order of the day was to claim that not only was a good idea good, but it would actually turn dog poop into solid gold, so the actuality had issues with the (stock-driven) promises.

Link (via Waxy)

Why you should love Google's toolbar

Many web people have been critical of Google's new Toolbar, which allows its users to choose to have the pages they view parsed for things like ISBNs and have them auto-linked to Amazon, or have Vehicle Information Numbers auto-linked to a VIN registry.

It's not a service I'd use, but I believe that it's the kind of service that is vital to the Web's health. The ability of end-users to avail themselves of tools that decomopose and reassemble web-pages to their tastes is an issue like inlining, framing, and linking: it's a matter of letting users innovate at the edge.

I think I should be able to use a proxy that reformats my browsing sessions for viewing on a mobile phone; I think I should be able to use a proxy that finds every ISBN and links it to a comparison-shopping-engine's best price for that book across ten vendors. I think I should be able to use a proxy that auto-links every proper noun to the corresponding Wikipedia entry.

And so on -- it's my screen, and I should be able to control it; companies like Google and individuals should be able to provide tools and services to let me control it.

(Of course, this isn't to justify fraud or passing off, as when linking, inlining, copying, proxying or other munging of pages are used to deceive end-users or remove their freedom of choice. But fraud isn't bad because it uses proxying, or deep-linking, or inlining: fraud is bad because it's fraud, no matter what tools it employs.)

Yoz "Perl is Internet Yiddish" Grahame has posted a good, apoplectic, funny, point-by-point refutation of the major objections to the Toolbar. It's a clear-eyed explanation of why, even if you don't use the Toolbar yourself, you should support it and tools like it.

"The issue for authors and publishers is whether readers know they're reading text that's been modified."

And it's so ambiguous! Admittedly, in order for the web page to be altered by the Google toolbar, an "AutoLink" button needs to be pressed every time (it doesn't do it automatically), and the first time you press it this pop-up window appears which explains everything. Personally, I don't think that's nearly enough! A large claxon should sound, the screen should flash, and the user should get a phone call from a Google employee explaining the incredibly ambiguous and possibly-accidental button press. After all, the user might not realise that they had altered the content of the page if they were incredibly forgetful or stupid.


HOWTO get a CD, DVD or book listed on Amazon

Kevin Kelly has posted a detailed explanation of the process by which you can get your self-published DVD, CD or book listed on Amazon. It's a great idea for those evangelical, get-the-message-out micro-publishing projects that have more than 10 or 20 potential customers -- you can print a couple hundred media objects at your local print-shop for a fraction of what a vanity press will charge, and then turn over all the post-office and payment crap to Amazon.
1 Get an ISBN (for a book), or a UPC (for a CD or DVD). For one book it costs $125, for one CD, $55, for one DVD, $89.
2 Get a bar code based on the ISBN or UPC. Costs $10, or may be included in UPC.
3 Sign up with Amazon, $30 per year.
4 Duplicate your stuff; include the bar code on the outside.
5 Ship two copies to Amazon
6 Send cover scan
7 Track sales
8 Resgister it (optional)
Link (via Paul Boutin)

Update: Jim Cowling sez, "Canadian publishers, including self-publishers, can get ISBNs for free by going to the Library and Archives Canada website."

Update 2: Viveka sez, "people in any country can find out how to get an ISBN through the alphabetical list on this page at the ISBN international site. For example, ISBNs in Australia are administered by Thorpe, and cost $33 each once you pay a usury of registration and block-allocation fees. I'm using 'usury' just as a collective noun for fees here, not as any imputation on the fine people at Thorpe, who must be paying their database admins by the keystroke."

America's dumbest laws to be violated all summer long

Two British students have researched America's stupidest laws and are spending this summer travelling from state to state, violating them.
Starting in the liberal state of California, they hope to evade the attention of local police officers when they ride a bike in a swimming pool and curse on a crazy-golf course.

In the far more conservative - and landlocked - state of Utah, they will risk the penitentiary when they hire a boat and attempt to go whale-hunting.

If they manage to outwit state troopers in Utah, and perhaps federal agents on their trail, they will be able to take a deserved, but nevertheless illegal, rest when they have a nap in a cheese factory in South Dakota.


Why Wikipedia works, and how the Britannica bully got it wrong

Robert McHenry is the former Editor in Chief of the Encylopaedia Britannica who gained notoriety when he wrote a self-service, virulent attack on Wikipedia called "the faith-based encyclopedia." McHenry's claims were ludicrous, pejorative and childish, but they captured the imagination of a lot of people who were drawn to believe that if the EiC said that Wikipedia didn't work, it must be true, even if Wikipedia did, in fact, work.

Now Aaron Krowne has written a stunning refutation of McHenry's piece and published it in Free Software Magazine. This thoroughgoing debunking not only shows how shoddy McHenry's reasoning is, but it actually goes some way toward a general theory of why and how Wikipedia-like projects fail or thrive. Best article I've read all week.

The user who visits Wikipedia to learn about some subject, to confirm some matter of fact, is rather in the position of a visitor to a public restroom. It may be obviously dirty, so that he knows to exercise great care, or it may seem fairly clean, so that he may be lulled into a false sense of security. What he certainly does not know is who has used the facilities before him...

What would McHenry’s metaphor apply more fittingly to?

Why, a traditional print encyclopedia, of course. If I wanted to analyze an arbitrary Britannica article’s evolution over time (for example), I’d have to somehow acquire the entire back catalog of the Britannica (assuming older editions can even be purchased), presumably reserve a sizeable warehouse to store them all, and block out a few days or so of my time to manually make the comparison.

Even the electronic forms of traditional encyclopedias are sure to be lacking such reviewability features. This makes sense, as public reviewability would be embarrassing to traditional content creators.

Link (via /.)

Hugo Gernsback: father of sf and early WiFi nut

Hugo Gernsback, who published the first science fiction magazine, got his start publishing radio and electronics hobbist mags. Glenn Fleishman has been researching the history of unlicensed radio and has discovered that ole Hugo was an early unlicensed radio/open spectrum advocate! I've co-written some sf about this, and I've got a novel coming out in May that's all about open wireless -- good to see that I'm part of a literary tradition in the field!
Gernsback published an early magazine on the topic, “Modern Electrics,” imported European electronics gear for amateur radio builders, and organized the Wireless Association of America in 1909 that had 10,000 members within a year. Gernback estimated that 400,000 amateur radio aficionados were at work in 1912.

Does this all sound a bit familiar? Working with cheaply available equipment, clambering on roofs, and working inside the law while not being subject to regulation, these amateurs–largely boys and young men–spent countless hours messing with technology to extend transmissions. It was some kind of combination of instant messaging, phone phreaking, and Wi-Fi with a distinctly modern flavor to it.


Science fiction radio show booted for being popular -- help get it onto sat radio

Mur sez, "The Dragon Page is a 2 hour sci-fi fantasy talk show out of Arizona that was broadcast on AM radio (and subsequently put out on the internet over podcasting). The Live Fire show was just cancelled because they were too popular and were making the other shows on the station - all conservative talk - look bad. We're trying to get the show back on the air, either on another local Arizona station or over satellite radio." Link 1, Link 2 (Thanks, Mur!)

Ten million CC licenses in a pie chart

Creative Commons has published a fascinating pie-chart showing the frequency with which each CC license appears appears in the wild, drawing on 10,000,000 CC licenses that are discoverable with Yahoo. Link

George Lucas and Jedi Mickey in Disney World

When George Lucas holidays in Disney World, he gets to hang with Jedi Mickey. Link

iPod acoustic hack: what it means

Some months ago, an enterprising hacker accomplished a key hack in the eventual opening of the iPod: Nils Schneider reverse-engineered the iPod's firmware. This means that hackers now have the means to move data off of and onto the iPod at will, but more interesting is how he accomplilshed it. He figured out how to get the iPod to convert its firmware to a series of squeaks (essentially, to play it like a piece of music) and then converted the music back into software. My cow-orker Seth has written a fantastic piece on the creativity involved in this ingenious hack:
Schneider's ingenious approach shows several important virtues:

* User innovation and the lack of passivity. Apple didn't intend for third-party software to be used with the iPod; not only was Schneider unconcerned with this, he ended up using the iPod in a way that its developers wouldn't have anticipated (and, if they've heard about it, are probably amused or startled by). He certainly refused to limit his thinking to what the original manufacturer had in mind; he insisted, on, well, thinking different.

* Consciousness of history. This problem was solved before in an earlier generation of technology. As Dave Farber has often pointed out, it's tragic that computer scientists and programmers working today are often thoroughly ignorant of what earlier generations have already invented and implemented. Even more than other fields, computing may be repeating and duplicating effort all the time. The notion of modulating digital data as a waveform at audio frequencies has been deeply important in digital communications, but it's easy enough for people who don't use a modem any more to forget it -- never mind people who (like myself) have never had to use an acoustic coupler.

* An appreciation for the universality of the machine. The idea that data is data and that representations and encodings of it are merely accidental goes back, depending on how you want to count it, decades or centuries. (See, e.g., Umberto Eco, The Search for the Perfect Language (Malden, MA: Blackwell Publishers, 1997), for some antecedents of this idea in the days before Shannon, Turing, and von Neumann.) But even so, we can get stuck in what cognitive psychologists call "functional fixedness" and refuse to think about data outside of its current representation. We can refuse to think of some signalling method or storage medium as capable of representing any data, of communications media and computing devices as genuinely universal. We can say that certain outputs were made for certain purposes and stubbornly refuse to consider that there are other outputs, even outputs that may be a problem for somebody's security policy. We can read Shannon, or anything after Shannon, and still not know in a practical sense that any data can be encoded on any channel. But Schneider thought with an abstraction and generality that befits an "information age"; he knew that bits are bits, from a communication engineering point of view, and meaning comes after, at another layer.


Jerks goad collector into shutting down his site

A Boing Boing reader says: Your post about the collector evidently inspired some criticism of his collections. See his website now.
"My Collections Page...

...has been withdrawn since being flooded with unkind and rude emails as a result of the link and unfounded, un-called for comments at B3TA.

I have put a lot of effort into my site for the benefit of everyone and don't expect to receive abuse in exchange.

For the time being I am not prepared to share my collections.

For the record, having a butterfly collection does not automatically make one a butterfly killer and I am most certainly not obsessed. I have many hobbies and I have other pursuits in life, which obviously some people do not.

At least I can say, I am never ever bored."

Stance Angle chair

 Images Anglechair StandingThis ultra sci-fi computer chair shifts from a normal seated position all the way to "reclined standing," with several other points in between. Meanwhile, the computer monitor and keyboard positioning unit moves vertically so that your whole workspace is ergonomically optimized no matter if you're up, down, or somewhere in the middle. Ambience Doré, the designer office furniture company that Xeni co-founded, is a distributor of the Stance Angle Chair and Plasma2 positioning system. Link

Videos of people being zapped by tasers

Here are a bunch of QuickTime videos of people (and in one case, a bull who was minding his own business) getting shot with taser guns. Ouch. Link

Hi-Fructose: more songs about monsters and food

A new magazine about candy, toys, and monsters launches in Spring, 2005:

"Hi-Fructose Toysploitation Magazine is your entry into the exploding Toy Arts Revolution. From Urban Vinyl, limited run, and artist centered toys to abandoned theme parks and Japanese monster Wrestling, Hi Fructose provides a cross section of the best and bizarre of the Under the Counter Culture."
Looks awesome. Link (via cephalablog)

Gummi roadkill offends the humor impaired

 C Pictures 2005 02 26 Mn Roadkill Candy2 This just in: "Animal rights activists say that Trolli Road Kill Gummi Candy -- in shapes of partly flattened snakes, chickens and squirrels -- fosters cruelty toward animals." How utterly unsurprising that news is.

I can't wait to buy my daughter a five-pound bag of this stuff. Hope the gelatin doesn't have mad cow prions in it.

(Related: I think the article that was the most fun for me to ever write was Gross National Product, for Wired in 1999. It was about weird and gross candy design.)

UPDATE: Stefan reports that Kraft foods has caved into pressure from animal rights activists who claim children exposed to this candy will grow up to become sadistic animal-runner-overs. Link

Dukes of Hazzard Institute seeks blogger/"good-ole-boy"

This reads like a trailer park wet dream: Get paid $100,000 to blog for one year about the Dukes of Hazzard.
The job responsibilities for the Vice President, THE DUKES OF HAZZARD INSTITUTE are:
-- watch THE DUKES OF HAZZARD every weeknight on CMT
-- know the words to THE DUKES OF HAZZARD theme song, Good Ol' Boys, written and performed on the series by the legendary Waylon Jennings
-- serve as media expert on THE DUKES OF HAZZARD for the CMT DUKES OF HAZZARD INSTITUTE: must be available for TV, radio and newspaper interviews to share his or her expertise and passion for THE DUKES OF HAZZARD on CMT
-- write THE DUKES OF HAZZARD INSTITUTE online blog for
-- be passionate about THE DUKES OF HAZZARD on CMT

Questions candidates will be asked include:
-- If you, Bo, Luke and Daisy took off in The General Lee, what would happen next?
-- If Waylon Jennings had written your theme song, what would be the title and chorus?
-- Which character on THE DUKES OF HAZZARD do you most identify with and why?

Link (wait -- there's a "Dukes of Hazzard Institute"???)

Orphan Works

Donna Wentworth sez,
When you can't find copyright holders, copyright becomes a quagmire. Let's fix it. For designers, academics, artists, musicians, and filmmakers, using copyrighted works can be a huge headache. It can be impossible to find out if a particular work is still under copyright or not. And even when people would happily pay to use a copyrighted photo, passage, or video clip, it's often impossible (or extremely costly) to find the copyright holder. When this happens, everybody loses. Artists can't realize their creative vision, academics can't clearly communicate their ideas, and copyright holders don't get paid. Even worse, important pieces of our culture get needlessly locked away.

Right now, the US Copyright Office is asking for public comment on the "orphan works" problem, so now's our chance to make the system work better. The Copyright Office has specifically asked for comments from people who have run up against the problem of trying to clear a potentially copyrighted work -- either for use in a new creative effort or simply to make the work available to the public once again.

If you have a story like this, it's essential you make your voice heard. Use the form on your right to submit comments directly to the Copyright Office -- you type, and we'll take care of the formatting and submission.


The (Hooters) Gates

Link (Thanks, mahalie).

iPods and MRIs

UCLA radiologists Osman Ratib and Antoine Rosset developed an open source iPod app to manage and move medical imaging data. Around 6,000 radiologists, surgeons, and cardiologists are now using OsiriX. From Technology Review:
It automatically recognizes and lists the medical images stored on the iPod. Now, iin much the same manner that people scroll through a playlist, radiologists can scroll through a list of patients or view their records through iPod's iPhoto application....

But it's not just a novelty, a one-time joyride for medical hackers. Thirty-seven percent of the respondents say they use it every day, and 24 percent say they are likely to develop plug-ins or other upgrades to better serve their needs.

While critics have leveled criticism about the iPod application, Ratib says that the patient's personal data is stripped out and assigned an anonymous identification during transport.