Lawrence has been touted nationally as the "land that anti-trust forgot". It is one of the few cities in America where one company owns the cable provider, cable news channel, daily newspaper, online news journal, weekly independent and most popular website. What keeps this media machine running smoothly? Broadband Internet revenue. According to Ralph Gage, former Chief Operating Officer of The World Company, 53 percent of the World Company’s annual revenue was generated by broadband Internet access.Link (Thanks, Offlogic!)
"What better place to start a municipal WiFi project," jokes Joshua Montgomery, founder of the Lawrence Freenet Project and CEO of the organization’s for-profit service provider, "I mean what could possibly go wrong?" The Lawrence Freenet municipal WiFi project was launched in April of 2005 by a small group of local geeks. "Mostly we just wanted to see what we could do with Wi-Fi," says Montgomery, "we started off with a $50 WiFi access point and a DSL connection. Now the organization has one of the largest mesh networks in the nation and serves over 1,100 members with broadband Internet access – all without a single dime of tax payer money."
Link to project, Link to map
Free the Net is a community-built network. Meraki provides the technology, but we rely on people to help build and grow. There are a number of ways you can help:
* If you can see the Free the Net signal, sign up for a free repeater to boost your signal.
* Volunteer to host an outdoor repeater on your roof or balcony. The outdoor units help spread the signal throughout your neighborhood and are critical to the growth of the network.
* Spread the word! Tell your friends and neighbors to sign up at http://sf.meraki.com.
* Check out the network map and keep yourself up-to-date on our progress.
Science is based on evidence. What happens when the data change? How have scientific findings or arguments changed your mind?Link.
I was one of the 165 participants, and wrote about what I learned from Boing Boing's community experiments, under the guidance of our community manager Teresa Nielsen Hayden: Link to "Online Communities Rot Without Daily Tending By Human Hands."
Here's a partial link-list of my favorite contributions from others:
Tor Nørretranders, W. Daniel Hillis, Ray Kurzweil, David Gelernter, Kai Krause, Clay Shirky, J. Craig Venter, Simon Baron-Cohen, Jaron Lanier, Martin Rees, Esther Dyson, Brian Eno, Yossi Vardi, Tim O'Reilly, Chris Anderson, Rupert Sheldrake, Daniel C. Dennett, Aubrey de Grey, Nicholas Carr, Linda Stone, George Dyson,Steven Pinker, Alan Alda, Stewart Brand, Sherry Turkle, Rudy Rucker, Freeman Dyson, Douglas Rushkoff .
Passengers board the first local train at any point, and it stops every 50 seconds for a period of 10 seconds. When the doors close, a gong sounds and the local platform starts moving. Now there is another signal and gates open for a second platform, or express, on which the passenger takes the major part of his trip. After ten seconds the gates close and the local slows down for another stop, while the express picks up to a 22 m.p.h. speed.
Noise of the system is at a minimum, and passengers are delivered at no more than 300 feet from their streets. All stations are controlled from one central point, all elements being so timed that there can be no hitches.
The Physics of Information was the topic of a recent public forum, sponsored by Perimeter Institute for Theoretical Physics in Waterloo, Ontario, and moderated by Bob McDonald. And Quirks was there to record the event. Do ideas about information and reality inspire fruitful new approaches to the hardest problems of modern physics? What can we learn about the paradoxes of quantum mechanics, the beginning of the universe and our understanding of black holes, by thinking about the very essence of information? Those are some of the questions our panel tackled.Link, Link to MP3, Link to podcast feed
This November, 1939 Popular Science article fantasizes about a futuristic "skyscraper airport" for the "city of tomorrow." Pretty good predictions, except they missed the whole no-shoes, no-liquid, no-dignity policy. Link
The 173m-high (567ft) structure is called Solae and dominates the skyline of Inazawa City...Link (Thanks, Geoff!)
The 5bn-yen ($50m;£25m) project will allow Mitsubishi to test new drives, gears, cables and other lift systems.
There is something about the relationship between the not-for-profit sector, the government, the foundations, and the donors that creates a massive incentive to lie -- flagrantly, and often.I met Van last summer and was absolutely blown away -- he's a smart, committed, incredibly effective activist who's funny, personable and convincing as hell. Link (Thanks, Destiny!)
And it's not just a one-sided thing. The relationship between not-for-profits and foundations is like the relationship between teenagers and parents. You don't really want to tell them everything that's going on, and they don't really want to know. So there's this dance of deceit, shall we say.
"What'd you do this weekend?"
"Oh... Studied! With my friends."
And the parents say 'Good! So glad to hear that!' Because they don't want to know. And so what do you say?
"How did the year go?"
"We had success after success! All goals were met, and a good time was had by all."
And what was there left to say? 'Good! Good!' They don't want to know....
By pressing its claim, trade lawyers said, Antigua could set a precedent for other countries to sue the United States for unfair trade practices, potentially opening the door to electronic piracy and other dubious practices around the world.Link (Thanks, Lee and Robbo!)
Still, carrying out the ruling will prove difficult, the lawyers say.
"Even if Antigua goes ahead with an act of piracy or the refusal to allow the registration of a trademark, the question still remains of how much that act is worth," said Brendan McGivern, a trade lawyer with White & Case in Geneva.
"The Antiguans could say that's worth $50,000, and then the U.S. might say that's worth $5 million." He predicted that "the U.S. is going to dog them on every step of the way."
Five years later, Rogers Cadenhead has done the math and concludes that blogs are edging out the Times (but that other mainstream media outlets are beating both of them -- thanks to the NYT having squandered the golden years of cheap googlejuice acquisition by erecting a registration and paywall on their content, causing them to fall behind less well-known, but more readily linked news-sources).
Most interesting of all is that Wikipedia (only a year old in 2002) is clobbering both of them -- more proof that the future is weirder than we can know. In 2002, it seemed like the two choices were "amateurs you trust" or "unbiased, accurate, and coherent" information from an "authoritative source." In reality, the third, unforeseen choice was "a horde of nameless, faceless amateurs who are not required to prove expertise in the subjects they cover."
The Lakota Indians, who gave the world legendary warriors Sitting Bull and Crazy Horse, have withdrawn from treaties with the United States, leaders said Wednesday. Lakota country includes parts of the states of Nebraska, South Dakota, North Dakota, Montana and Wyoming.Excerpt:
The new country would issue its own passports and driving licenses, and living there would be tax-free -- provided residents renounce their US citizenship.
"We are no longer citizens of the United States of America and all those who live in the five-state area that encompasses our country are free to join us," long-time Indian rights activist Russell Means told a handful of reporters and a delegation from the Bolivian embassy, gathered in a church in a run-down neighborhood of Washington for a news conference.Link
A delegation of Lakota leaders delivered a message to the State Department on Monday, announcing they were unilaterally withdrawing from treaties they signed with the federal government of the United States, some of them more than 150 years old.
They also visited the Bolivian, Chilean, South African and Venezuelan embassies, and will continue on their diplomatic mission and take it overseas in the coming weeks and months, they told the news conference.
Major Raymond Phillips, O.M.E., late member of the Inter-Allied Commission of Control, claims to have evolved apparatus which will cause a gramaphone or kettle to function entirely by will power.Link
Major Phillips explains that the human body acts as an earth and the constant capacity is maintained within three yards of the apparatus. A momentary pause in the flow to earth through the body–produced entirely by mind concentration–is followed by an upward surge of sufficient intensity to cause a series of relays to operate.
That’s the story. You can take it or leave it. We have a sneaking suspicion that somebody is being kidded.
Noah Shachtman points us to the Wired DANGER ROOM holiday gift guide.
The Pentagon is burning billions, to equip the soldier of the future. With DANGER ROOM's holiday gift guide, you can spend thousands, to get pretty much the same gear, today. Besides, who doesn't love a lil' pink Taser for Christmas?Link.
Espinosa, 20, an alleged gang member, was awaiting sentencing after pleading guilty to manslaughter in a 2005 drive-by shooting in Elizabeth. Blunt, 32, was awaiting trial on charges of robbery and weapons offenses.Link
The men helped cover up the break by placing dummies under their bed blankets, and hiding the wall holes with magazine photos of women in bikinis, authorities said.
Authorities launched a review of security measures, and barred inmates from pinning up pictures from magazines on their cell walls.