opinions, everybody's got one...
Saturday, December 21, 2002
blogging new york
It's only a couple or three hours to New York City from Delaware. It's a definite destination spot for things that just can't be found here in the hinterlands. Actually, we're a little spoiled in that Washington, Baltimore, Philadelphia, and New York City aren't really all that far away.
A couple of blogs providing news of New York, including events worth seeing have sprung up recently. There's the stylish and amusing Gawker, and CityBlogs New York which has the feel of a well written campus bulletin board. I like both, and look forward to seeing them grow and succeed. Maybe someone in the other cities I listed will follow up with blogs focusing on their hometowns. Maybe someone will do the same for Delaware. Until they do, we may try to point out some coming events in the First State...
Commenting on Copyright Comments
The United States Copyright Office, at the Library of Congress, asked for comments on possible exceptions to the Digital Millennium Copyright Act. And comments they received. Wired covers the Office's release of the comments to the public in an article called Critics Weigh In on Copyright Act. They also provide a link to the comments, which are at: Comments on Rulemaking on Exemptions on Anticirumvention.
There are some great comments. If you would like to add to what has been expressed in one of the comments that has been submitted, there is an opportunity to do so. As the Copyright Office states on this page, "Reply comments (due February 19) may be submitted in opposition to or in further support of exemptions proposed in the initial comments." That page also contains information on the format that you should follow if you wish to make a submission. Remember, the topics are now limited to what has been expressed in one of the initial comments.
standing still sun
Today is the winter solstice; the shortest day of the year and longest night. Solstice means "standing still sun." There are some nice pages on the web that explore the ways that this day has been viewed and celebrated in the past, including Candlegrove's Solstice page, and School of the Season's Celebrating Winter Solstice. The actual moment of solstice, or the sun's lowest latitude in the sky is 8:14 Eastern Standard time, 5:14 Pacific Standard. May this be a happy and peaceful Yule to all.
Friday, December 20, 2002
Wearing tin foil helmets?
While browsing Mike's List, I discovered a link to a site advertising hats with a silver lined ear flap to shield against microwaves while using a cell phone.
Mike says it makes you look like a dork. I think plug-in ear pieces have little to worry from this competition.
Alaska Driving Tips
Slow. Drive slowly in the snow. When you approach intersections, slow down almost to a stop when you get about 50 yards from the light, and then inch forward. They don't use salt to melt the ice (it would be an exercise in futility). The exhaust fumes from the vehicles turn all of the intersections into skating rinks. Only once in a while will they scatter cinders around to assist in traction.
Watch out for moose. Really. This includes when leaving the house to go warm up the car, while you are driving, and before you leave the car. It doesn't matter if you are in a city, so are the moose.
4 x 4 is preferred. Really.
Slow. Did I mention slow? Expect the other fellows to slide through the intersection. They frequently do.
Wednesday, December 18, 2002
cnn loses names to cnn
In a battle of CNNs over 325 domain names, Lebanese-based Channel News Network had an arbitration decision made against them and on behalf of world-wide news agency Cable News Network. This is believed to be the largest domain name dispute to have been decided under the Uniform Domain Name Dispute Resolution Policy (UDRP).
If you're traveling around central Delaware, and you happen to see a reindeer go by, don't panic, and don't look for a white-bearded gentleman dressed in red chasing after her. Give the police a call. They've received enough of them now so that they no longer think that callers are spreading (or imbibing) holiday spirits. The reindeer escaped from a christmas shop on Tuesday. More about reindeer here.
[2002-12-19 (morning) update. Holly Berry, our runaway reindeer, eluded capture and is still on the loose. Her trail was lost just before dark last night.]
the law goes to school
You too can have a real live lawyer come visit your classroom if you're in Delaware. Details to that and more are on the pages of the Delaware Law Related Educational Center, Inc. (DELREC) Note to people from outside of Delaware -- we have a thing for strange acronyms in the first state. They also have information about the 2003 Delaware High School mock trial competition, including some specifics about the case in question. This is a great program, and the winners have the opportunity to compete in a National Mock Trial Competition.
Streetlaw.org also has some very good pages on law and education. They also recently set up a site for teachers interested in presenting material about the US Supreme Court called Landmarkcases.org. There are some interesting activities on those pages, like this one which has participants consider whether the Miranda case should be overturned.
touring state capitols
The ever interesting LLRX is beginning a series of armchair tours through the capitols of all fifty states, to take a look at the features and services offered by each. The journey is in alphabetical order, so they've included a swing through Delaware's Capitol, Dover, on the first leg of the trip. I didn't know that the City was offering dialup internet access to all Delawareans for $15.00/month.
I came across Safechild.net earlier today. It has some good safety tips about gifts for young children, and also enables you to search through 350 major toy recalls issued by the U.S. Consumer Product Safety Commission (CPSC). The Commission has a number of other safety suggestions on their own pages, and an almost overwhelmingly large set of publications.
Tuesday, December 17, 2002
It's possible by now you've heard that the criminal prosecution under the Digital Millennium Copyright Act (DMCA) against Russian software manufacturer Elcomsoft was halted by a jury's decision to find the company not guilty earlier today:
Defense attorney Joe Burton said the government failed to prove Elcomsoft intended to violate the law, but predicted more prosecutions.Another application of the DMCA that I missed a few days ago was its use in the shutdown of a parody site involving Dow Chemical. The parody site is now gone, and the domain name now redirects to Dow Chemical's pages.
Baseball is a summertime sport, but the last few days have seen a lot of activity surrounding the United States' national pastime. Winter baseball meetings, sometimes the scene of big trades, were quiet this year. A few moves were made, but expectations are that many more may happen before the end of the week.
An official announcement was made today that the Expos will play 22 homes games in Puerto Rico next season. I know a few people who are very excited about this happening.
A Roberto Clemente exhibit has also been set up at the Museum of Puerto Rican Art in San Juan, where it will stay until May 5th. After that it will travel to Pittsburgh, and then other cities in the US.
Baseball Commissioner Bud Selig is expected to issue an edict ordering a minimum age of 14 for batboys sometime next month. The ruling is in response to a near collision during the 5th game of last year's World Series during a play at the plate. The 3 year-old son of then San Francisco manager Dusty Baker wandered too close to the play, and was scooped up out of harm's way by quick-thinking J.T. Snow.
Another edict that might be issued by the Commissioner may involve the reinstatement of Pete Rose to baseball. Should Rose get a second chance? Or, should he not? There are a lot of divided opinions.
But, the biggest news in baseball this week may focus upon fans. Specifically, the fans fighting for ownership of the baseball that Barry Bonds hit last year to set a record for most home runs in a season. A decision on the case is expected tomorrow. I wonder how the litigants would feel if the Judge decided that the ball should be cut in half?
updating the web
I was looking for some statistics regarding web browsers on the net when I came across a page called Browser News. It has a lot of information about new releases for browser software, and security patch updates. There have been a good number of those in the last month. It's worth a peek.
The United State's government is also looking at some upgrades in their use of the web. The E-Government Act of 2002 was signed into law today. While the law allows the federal government to employ people from private industry to help improve the level of online services and information available, I'm hoping that they keep an eye on the excellent Usability Guidelines developed by the National Cancer Institute.
The American Library Association has a very good analysis of the Act. (E-Government Act links via Metafilter)
Monday, December 16, 2002
under the deep blue sea
A University of Delaware oceanographer was part of a team that has discovered a deep-sea crab with a very unique set of eyes.
The Wilmington News Journal takes a look at cyberterrorism, and solicits the viewpoints of representatives of some local businesses such as Verizon, MBNA and DuPont. The Delaware State Chamber of Commerce is planning a seminar on the subject some time early next year to help spread information on how to avoid being a victim of an internet based attack.
copyright has a new look
And so does the web site of Creative Commons. If you create copyrighted materials, and you would like to share some of your rights to that material in certain situations, you might want to consider "offering your work" under a Creative Commons license.