Thursday, May 31, 2007

Nasa Director Michael Griffin:

"I guess I would ask which human beings — where and when — are to be accorded the privilege of deciding that this particular climate that we have right here today, right now is the best climate for all other human beings. I think that's a rather arrogant position for people to take."

That won't be a popular position.
This is fine with me. I was never a fan of Doctor Who, either the original or the SciFi Channel remake. Maybe that'll free time to return Battlestar Galactica to Friday nights, where it belongs.

Although with the latter's increasingly dark and mystical bent, I'm not sure if I care about that so much anymore, either.
Digg Report: Today's #1 Digg, at 5007 Diggs, is about a poor sap caught coming out of a strip club by Google Maps Street View. A little stroke of serendipity, if you've been following along today.

So far, Digg isn't demonstrating the ability to link to truly meaningful stories. It's looking more and more like it's populated mainly by Leftist, nerdy, pubescent, alcoholic dweebs. If it's a technology that's going to change the world, I'm not sure we'll like what it comes up with.

Update: A commenter provided an interesting link: a whole slew of Google Maps Street View sightings. Some are a bit funny, as well. Thanks for the link!
I suppose some people might find it interesting to watch Justine. I've tried it, and so far I'm not sure I get the attraction.

Just because the Internet makes something possible, doesn't mean it should be done, I think. A snoozer so far.

By the way, she needs some help with decorating. Her space is a little drab. And what's with the music? I can't quite recognize it, but it's depressing as hell. No wonder she looks so unhappy. And what's with all the...

Wait a minute. Maybe this is a little titillating, after all.
I'm not concerned about Google's Street View Maps. Anything you can see by just driving down the street seems fair game to me.
Via Cox and Forkum, an article by Robert Tracinski on Al Gore's book, An Assault on Reason. It's worth a read.

Tracinski, that is. Not Gore.
I thought Boing Boing was all for protecting privacy and such. I guess not. Unless, of course, it's protecting against government trying to find criminals and terrorists.
Actually, no, Boing Boing, this billboard does not appear to have anything to do with the idea that "Saddam Hussein was the mastermind behind 9/11." It merely illustrates the idea that Iraq is part of the larger war against Islamic terrorists. That the war started with 9/11 and is thus illustrated this way is unfortunate; it should have started much earlier, with the previous attack on the WTC, with the USS Cole, with the Beirut bombing, with the Iranian invasion of the US Embassy in 1979.

Welcoming home a solider from Iraq, and reminding him (and everyone else) that there's a wider battle being fought, is not something that should be exposed to such snide comments from Boing Boing. At least, they should try to avoid being outright misleading.

Remains to be seen, I think. No pun intended.
On a related note, here's a story about another music label that's signed a deal with YouTube. Unfortunately, I get the impression that such deals are signed because intellectual property holders believe they have no other way to protect their property. Better to get some revenues, they think, than none at all.

That might be true, but it's an unfortunate result of technology that makes protecting intellectual property nearly impossible.
I'm not sure that it really matters whether it's P2P sharing that's the largest source of illegal music copies, or some other source. Perhaps the music labels go after P2P because it's possible to do so, while, as the linked story states, it's virtually impossible to go after copying of borrowed CD's. If anything, it just goes to prove the tremendous negative impact that technology is having on the protection of intellectual property.
Is it government's responsibility to determine the causes of our actions, and to stop us from harming ourselves? Or, is it government's responsibility merely to create an environment wherein our actual actions, as they directly affect others, have consequences?

The former notion has created something of a slippery slope of late, as expected. It started with drugs (excluding alcohol, of course), more recently including cigarettes. Then, it was extended to opinions, in the case of "hate" crimes. Next was unhealthy foods, like the banning of trans fats. Now, it's being extended to video games.

As individuals, we're legally responsible for the results of our actions. Hating a racial group shouldn't be against the law; killing someone, regardless of their race, should be. A crime isn't made worse by virtue of one's racism, and it isn't made better if one loves the victim's race. And, killing someone because of the race isn't excused by one's racism, which is an implicit assumption behind hate crimes--that one is somehow compelled to commit a crime by virtue of one's racism.

The same with video games--even if they cause some people to commit a crime, that's not the same as committing the crime itself. And whether or not they're bad for children is for each child's parents to decide.