A Movie About Trusted Computing

I recently came across a movie about "Trusted Computing" that in my opinion is worth mentioning here.

The basic message is "why trust the industry if they do not trust their customers?" The movie is nicely animated and obviously origins in the anti tcpa movement. By Benjamin Stephan and Lutz Vogel

(Their server is a bit slow, so I have put a copy of the medium size file on the MA Rave College network, however, you can also use the torrent file.)

What is Web 2.0?

Have you heard the term Web 2.0 kicking about? Been wondering what the hell it means? Wikipedia (a Web 2.0 service in its own right) has a running definition:

A website could be said to be built using Web 2.0 technologies if it featured a number of the following techniques: CSS, semantically valid XHTML markup, and Microformats Unobtrusive Rich Application techniques (such as Ajax) Java Web Start. Flex/Laszlo/Flash, XUL, Syndication of data in RSS/Atom. Aggregation of RSS/Atom data. Clean and meaningful URLs. Support posting to a weblog REST or XML Webservice APIs...

In other words, it's everything you've already been doing, or should have been. Or is it?

In an article for Wired, Boing Boing's Xeni Jardin argues that a key component of 'Web 2.0' is 'public participation and contributions from the commons.' This, she says, is not necessarily a good thing. (Jardin is following here the recent invective from Nicholas Carr, who savages Wikipedia for innacuracy and Web 2.0 proponents for ' venerating the amateur' and 'distrusting the professional.'

Brave News World

(by christoph burgdorfer)

Timeframe: 2 to 5 years from now.

A couple of days ago, Google launched its new service "Google Reader" which is basically a RSS aggregator. I do not think, this is a coincidence. I believe that Google has realized that at some point, everybody will use his personal news feeds to get informed rather than just checking up a few news sources on a regular base. This will lead into a weakening of the current information sources' positions and support the possibility to get a wider variety and more independent opinions on topics of interest.

The way most of us read the news today has a long tradition. It originated in the 15th Century with the invention of the printing with movable letters by Johannes Gutenberg. Since then, the format has not much changed, we still get the newspapers printed out black on grey paper. At some point, there were pictures, then they became colorful, but let's face it, that doesn't make much of a difference, does it?


If, like me, you're interested in making devices to do things that Should Be Possible but currently aren't, you'll want to put in an order for some of these with the MAIDM acquisitions department (sorry, Karel!)

'PICAXE' is a powerful, low cost, microcontroller programming system designed to simplify educational and hobbyist use of microcontrollers. The unique feature of the PICAXE system is you program it via a direct cable link straight into the microcontroller -- so no expensive programmers or erasers are required. The the 'Programming Editor' software. software to program it is also free.

Programs can be created graphically using flowcharts, or programmatically using a simple BASIC style language. The ultimate result is a chip that does what you want it to.

LINKS to happy PICAXErs:

Happy Hippy:

Peter H Anderson:

What IS AJAX -- And Why Is It Important?

Examples like Google Maps and Google Suggest demonstrate the importance of AJAX -- and why it's more than just a fad.

Critics (there are always critics: ignore them at your peril) will say that AJAX is nothing new. They will be right. Javascript has been around for years and the XMLHttpRequest tool that provides the whizz-bang application-style updates to a page has been around along with it. But they're missing the point: it's only in the last couple of years that last-mile bandwidth (read: ADSL) and raw processing power have made browser-based Java & Javascript applications that AJAX enables possible. Google maps works real sweet, but 3.5 years ago it would have crawled across your browser like a lead slug.

So what is AJAX and how do you get involved in it? The short answer is: scroll to the bottom of this piece and click the links. The slightly-longer answer is: AJAX isn't a single new thing, it's several things working together: XHTML and CSS at the front end, and the Document Object Model for dynamic stuff; XML and XSLT for data interchange and manipulation using; and XMLHttpRequest for asynchronous data retrieval. With JavaScript binding everything together, you have what's commonly known as AJAX.

Inquisitor -- AJAX + metasearch

Inquisitor is now my Home page in Konqueror (the native, crash-proof browser of KDE). Why? Because I'm always curious about new entries into the search space -- and it's pretty in a ripped-off-from-Apple sort of way.

Of course this a metasearch, not an offering proper -- through Inquisitor you search various other search engines, including Google. So far, so what: but Inquisitor has some tricks up its sleeve in the form of AJAX (that's Asynchronous Javascript and XML to you) enabled predictive searching. That means (as you'll see if you try it out) that Inquisitor guesses what you're searching for as you type words in the search form and offers suggested results before you've hit 'Return.'

Now you might guess that this is some hardcore functionality for a lonely coder to put together, and you'd be right: Inquisitor is not in fact a separate engine -- its predictive functionality is powered by Google Suggest. Unlike Google Suggest, which gives suggestions of possible search terms you might be interested in, Inquisitor gives you search results as you type. (More on Google Suggest in future posts.)

Frieze Art Fair London

If I compare the Frieze Art show with 100%design show, here at Regents Park they present really better design, definitely yes, yes I think so, it’s much better design, some of it is gorgeous design, yes lovely, extraordinary, no kidding its challenging, how shocking http://www.friezeartfair.com/ , it’s a good update what is on and off in the Art market and its the biggest gathering of people in black in October 2005.

First impressions:
First sentence: I had an dinner with some very good friends of you....and...., I am a dealer, yes...(French art dealer to German art dealer).
Second sentence: Oh hay, how are you ........( two well dressed couples meet).
Third sentence: Darling lets have a coffee, ok lets have a coffee (good dressed woman to here poorly dressed husband, caring a baby).
Fifth sentence: you fucker, you bitch (London artist with sunglasses to bouncer of Deutsche Bank VIP launch, which refused him entry) you http://www.deutsche-bank-kunst.com .

Web 2.0 goes Live

A small team of developers in California has launched a cutting-edge Firefox-based Web browser dubbed Flock, which integrates next-generation Web technologies such as RSS content feeds, blogs and bookmark and photo sharing.

The browser's new features are based on new Web technologies,that has come to be known as Web 2.0.

The team of developers was spearheaded by Bart Decrem, who is well known in the open-source community due to his involvement in the Mozilla Foundation.

The traditional Web browser bookmarks menu has been replaced in favour of close integration with del.icio.us, an online service that allows bookmarks to be stored and shared with other users. Flock includes a built-in RSS reader, this allows a user to read all of their blogs in one place, without separately navigating to each one, Flock is the first to integrate this into a Web browser, it also facilitates blogging by the user with a "Create a blog post" button located in the main navigation bar that integrates on a drag-and-drop level with Flickr. Flock intergrates with Wordpress, Six Apart and Blogger.

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