i dunno about that, but i _am_ curious to see how the afforementioned pimps completed phone pimping turns out. pimp away, my artistic friends, pimp away.
the soulpad, by ibm.
the soulpad, in a nutshell, is gonna be a little module (connected via usb) which will contain users' preferences, docs, and other personal info. you carry your soulpad around and just plug into whatever computer you want, wherever you go, rather than lugging around a whole laptop.
i think it'd be cool to integrate a touchscreen (on some kind of arm-based chip) into the design--that way you could still access (some of) your data on the fly.
and wireless. oooh.. you could even make it modular--the soulpad would just chill on your belt or in your pack or something, and it could wireless to a little touchscreen for access, and a communications module to access cellular and data networks.
the possibilities are endless....
at 8/31/2005 08:44:00 AM posted by cid
us v. councilman victory--i.e. they overturned a previous decision that 'allowed an email service provider to secretly monitor content of users' incoming messages'.
proof that when people stick together (and to their guns) change can effected.
at 8/19/2005 09:26:00 AM posted by cid
where did all the payphones go?
i saw one yesterday.
i wanted to make a telephone call-
but the payphone ran away.
where did all the cells come from?
i saw one yesterday.
the owner screamed 'hey, where you at?'
and then he was on his way.
what's this mail? this email thing?
i got one yesterday.
this morning i opened my inbox-
and the spam swept me away.
how come letters don't get sent?
they used to make my day.
you'd write and fold and stamp and lick-
and the mailman'd take it away.
how long can this poem go on?
it's getting pretty gay.
getting's just not quite the word-
it started out that way.
where did this inn tar net come from?
it's bigger every day.
it doesn't matter what you're into-
you can find it anyway.
where did all the phone phreaks go?
did the bells chase them away?
who will find the holes in the system-
as they dial numbers and play?
can i stop this from going on?
will it go that way?
what if i can never stop-
and i just--nah. just kidding!! (bang bang)
at 8/19/2005 02:02:00 AM posted by cid
they're talking about an intelligence quotient (iq) test for artificial intelligence (ai) systems.
granted, alan turing pointed out this need (with the turing test) a long time ago.
nonetheless, a good idea.
now, the thing we want to make sure of is that the test isn't worthless. in other words, we wanna take our time and make sure that the test gives us relevant, useful, accurate information, and that we truly _understand_ what the results we are given _actually mean_.
if we (and when i say 'we' what i really mean is whoever ends up making this thing (work)) can accomplish these two things, then the resulting test might actually be a wonderfully useful tool.
rather than just raw tech specs (which, sadly, not enough people actually understand anyway) a user could get a human-readable list of functions or categories of functions (which will be easily understood to project _how_ this new device or program will integrate into their daily lives--useful information).
what this would accomplish is the same it would accomplish in any other field or application--it creates a standard.
and a _good_ (get me here, i'm talking a GOOD) standard can spark innovation like _no_ amount of proprietary technology can.
case in point--the modular desktop pc (the oldschool ibm and it's clones). that open standard started the revolution that _BUILT_ the computing industry as we know and think about it today.
so, i guess i'll say it once more--this will be cool (and good, and useful, and wonderful) if and only if....they do it right.
at 8/18/2005 12:09:00 PM posted by cid
no, seriously. cnn's talking about infants that were refused boarding (of their planes) because their names (or something similar) being on the no-fly terrorist list.
now, granted, we all know how much the media likes to blow things out of proportion, but this (very clearly) illustrates the ridiculousness of the system in charge of 'security' in these kinds of situations.
i'd like to say i'm shocked, but somehow, this really doesn't surprise me.
at 8/16/2005 10:43:00 AM posted by cid
this is how greedy they are, folks. microsoft will be putting in a system that will reject any peripheral (i.e. controller) not digitally signed by microsoft.
are they doing this to protect the end users' investment? well, no. are they doing it to protect the xbox itself? no? well, maybe they're doing it to ensure that only quality products make it into consumers' homes. wrong again.
they're doing it to force other manufacturers into paying licensing fees for access to a technology implemented to create the need for access. access which can (supposedly) only be given by microsoft.
now you and i both know that the reason i put the word 'suposedly' into that last paragraph is because about ten minutes after they start selling these things, some crafty little hardware hackers somewhere will have reversed the protocol and bypassed the whole scheme.
but in the land of the dmca, will this sort of creative free enterprise even be allowed?
sadly, i think it won't.
0wn your cons0le
at 8/15/2005 10:57:00 PM posted by cid
tee enn dubs again, y'all... harvard is starting a study of the origins of life.
ok. my first problem with this whole debate is that nobody's ever gonna win (unless god makes a guest appearance or somebody builds a time machine)--that's it. i don't care _how_ good your conclusions are, you CANNOT PROVE IT!!
secondly, why do the theories have to be two separate, disparate entities? why do they have to conflict? why can't evolution be the method the Creator used in the Creation? is that too far fetched or something?
and meanwhile, what are we teaching the kids? and on _that_ topic (y'know, the whole 'church and state' thing?) i'd have to say that evolution (as the point people are arguing, not necessarily the definition of the word) seems to be pushing the view of atheism--which, like it or not, is definitely a religious point of view.
but when i think about evolution, working backward it all makes sense--you can see the changes over millions of years and even see the planets and stars and nebulae formed from spinning dust and gas, right back all the way to the moment of the big bang.
and then we're left with the question 'and what caused that?' when i think of creationism, i'm thinking not just about life on this planet, but the creation of reality as we know it (and reality, as it may exist beyond what we know).
we live in the fourth dimension (six degrees of freedom, plus time) there are a few people who may understand more (though many have trouble just getting past three (on either side)) but much beyond that, we just don't know.
i just think that's what we need to be teaching our kids--we don't know. this is what we _do_ know, these are the things that people _think_, but nobody who was there is here, now, so we just don't know.
at 8/15/2005 10:27:00 PM posted by cid
supreme court justice john paul stevens has been talkin' th' smack about th' death penalty.
he brings up a couple of very good points (and by that i mean two very horrible things to point out, but clever and insightfully highlighted)--there have been people innocently (as later proven by dna evidence) executed, mistakes which (much like prison time served undeservedly) are not mistakes which can be remedied, but (unlike prison) is permanently so.
and, two, he brings up the point that the jury selection process (specifically the ability of the prosecution to dismiss prospective jurors who have reservations about the death penalty) can unfairly tip the tables out the 'jury of your peers' territory.
also, he talks about the strain on the court system these cases place, but the other side of the coin is the strain lifers (and, indeed the recitivism rate) actually place on the country.
neither solution seems very palatable, and yet clearly something needs to be done. the _execution_ of an innocent person should chill us to the bone, i think, but in this age of terrorism (should we start calling 'em terries?) there seems to be more and more of the apathetic uncaring-ness spreading itself around.
i guess (like most anything) a strong case can be made for more than one side....
at 8/15/2005 09:38:00 PM posted by cid
well, today was the day.
the people who decided to stay got served (notices, not breakdance moves), there were a few riots, no injuries (as far as i've yet heard/read, anyhoo).
i dunno what to think. what d'you think?
0wn your country?
at 8/15/2005 09:06:00 PM posted by cid
looks like the mars foundation are red planet bound. s'posedly, anyhow.
me? i'm glad to see it. i've been screaming it for years, actually. i think we need to get some people off this rock permanently--colonies, generation ships, planetary habitats, free floating space stations--all good ideas at this point.
we've got the technology. we've certainly got the manpower (out of six odd billion, you're bound to get some volunteers). all we need is to get the ball rolling.
we'll learn quickly, i think, once things start to happen, but taking that first initial plunge is the tough part.
that's why i'm so happy to see programs like this (taking the subject serious, with attainable goals in the foreseeable future) and the int'l space station. we need to just start _doing_ it. everybody knows it's the next frontier... and to the 'arrive, survive and thrive' crew, i wish you luck and prosperity.
0wn your s0lar system
at 8/14/2005 08:34:00 PM posted by cid
employee discount programs extended all over the place. gm (general motors) started the whole ordeal, i belive, and then chrysler and ford followed suit.
now two questions immediately spring to mind--is this really an actual, honest-to-God employee discount equivalent, or are they just playing some numbers game to jerk people around, here. and two--what caused the other two big names in american vehicular production to play the copycat role--necessity? just to see if they could get away with it? are they all in on it together?
the first question is relatively straight-forward, but number two seems to bring up even more questions.
although, i s'pose if the answer to number one is no, then the answer to number two shouldn't really matter, now should it?
at 8/07/2005 11:27:00 PM posted by cid
phil zimmermann, creator of the pgp (pretty good privacy) encryption scheme, has announced plans for a secure voip telephony system.
he hopes voip providers (vonage and packet 8 are two of the biggest) as well as voip telephone manufacturers (like cisco) will start building pgp security in.
kinda reminds me of an old program (and the author's name escapes me right now) called pgpfone (or maybe php-phone?) back in the day which utilized pgp to encrypt voice connections--i'm pretty sure it was an independent author who wrote it, tho i could be mistaken (as i've said, i can't remember his or her name and can't find my copy right now).
privacy is good.
0wn your phone
at 8/04/2005 03:17:00 PM posted by cid
if it had to be lucas, then so be it. i'm just glad someone's pushing for better use of ai in games. i guess he's got the (monetary) muscle to get the ball rolling, anyway.
artificial intelligence needs to be expanded, and fostered, and incorporated into our lives. we could benefit so much by having intelligently designed devices, tools and systems which can learn and make themselves _smarter_.
at 8/04/2005 01:56:00 PM posted by cid
why couldn't they have repaired spacecraft by spacewalking before now?
i think it's great. i also think it's time to retire the shuttle and come up with a new one. (maybe a one-piece this time?)
power to the space program...i mean people.
at 8/03/2005 10:36:00 PM posted by cid
..er website, i guess.
vnunet's got a story about banks and a scam known as phishing (whereby one sets up a fraudulent site--that looks like the real one--in an attempt to harvest peoples' docs).
according to this new study by an independent analyst firm, banks could've prevented $2.75 billion--that's B-I-L-L-I-O-N dollars--from being conned out of them simply by having tighter, more well though out security policies and practices.
makes you think, eh?
oh, and i'd also like to give shouts for mr. tom sanders (the author of the article) for not referring to these phishy criminals as hackers.
at 8/03/2005 10:23:00 PM posted by cid
no fraternizing. no dating. no parties. no dinner. no ballgames. no friends you work with.
conflict of interests? how 'bout a conflict of morals? what about a conflict of freedoms? who gave these guys the right to tell our employers they can tell _US_ how we spend our _TIME OFF_!?
the national labor relations board has given companies the power to tell their employees who they're allowed to be friends with outside of work, not just when they're there.
pretty soon we're all going to be 'singing the corporate anthem' and shopping at the corporate store--living in corporate authorized housing, visiting doctors the company says we're allowed to visit, buying the things they want us to buy, going the places they want us to go--it's insane!
what are they thinking?
do they not realize that these bonds are the same bonds that are holding their employees together? what do they expect to happen?
are people going to stand for this? this underlines the corporate ideal that intellectual property (read:money) is more important than the people who make the world go round.
i'm livid. i'm gonna stop now, before i write something i regret. tell me what you think.
0wn yourself before somebody does it for you
at 8/03/2005 02:50:00 PM posted by cid
get yours today!! (bang-bang)
haven't got a chance to read through every article, yet, but it looks like it's gonna be a good one.
lots of google talk--most people don't realize it, but google offers a plethora of interesting and powerful tools (and with the right creative use of those tools, they become even more powerful) and services (mostly for free) to play with.
also, i've gotta give shouts to the author (can't 'member your handle right now--sorry) of 'where have all the implants gone?'. extra sweet.
he (or she) pretty much summed up most of the thoughts that have been going through my head these last couple of years. we've got some amazing technologies in the pipe that we (the body of consumers) prolly won't see any time soon simply because the current big corporate players are making too much money to give it up (or even risk losing market share).
that means it's up to us.
at 8/03/2005 02:33:00 PM posted by cid
well, slashdot says that korean scientists have cloned a dog.
horse, sheep, dog....where are the people?
i figured someone would've done it by now. not that i think it's a particularly good idea or anything, but under the surface, it's definitely a pressurized debate waiting to spring back into the headlines.
at 8/03/2005 02:27:00 PM posted by cid