No More SOPA is an Android app that lets you scan the barcodes of the products on the shelves at stores to determine (more or less) whether the manufacturer has backed SOPA. Unfortunately, manufacturing is so concentrated, and manufacturers' associations are so Internet-hostile, you might have to hunt quite a while for a SOPA-free alternative. But if one product in a hotly contested category saw a decisive lift in sales thanks to its manufacturer's good sense, others might defect.
Chris Thompson, one of the students who created No More SOPA, says he hopes the program could help solidify the widespread anger around SOPA, which aims to block access to foreign copyright-infringing websites, into well-defined boycotts of the companies who have pushed the bill, from Adidas to Xerox to Walmart to Dow Chemical. “These companies think they’ll make more money with SOPA than without it,” says 20-year old Thompson. “If they realize they’re costing themselves more consumers than they’ll gain, they’ll be less inclined to go forward with that support.”
Thompson says he recently scanned a Simply Orange bottle of orange juice he had bought, for instance, and the app detected that the juice had ties to SOPA: Coca-Cola, which owns the brand, has a joint venture with Nestle, which also owns a stake in L’Oreal, a company that’s lobbied for SOPA. He’s since switched to Tropicana.
Android Barcode Scanner App Detects If A Product's Maker Supports SOPA
Researcher Yarden Katz scraped the database of Intellectual Ventures, a giant business that buys up patents, but produces nothing but lawsuits (previously), and discovered that IV claims ownership of nearly 500 patents that were created at public expense by researchers employed by public universities, and another 100 or so patents filed by the US Navy.
Kids’ author/droid builder Kurt Zimmerman created “Artoo Deco,” an Art Deco take on R2-D2, capable of movement under radio control, and with an in-built sound-system that makes cool, droidish noises.
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