Sunday, January 13, 2013

Also, being able to control every computer in the country makes for a formidable Cyber Weapon...
"ASIO, Australia's spy agency, is pushing for the ability to lawfully hijack peoples' computers — even if they are not under suspicion of any crime. They seek the ability to gain access to a third party's computer in order to facilitate gaining access to the real target — essentially using any person's personal computer as a proxy for their hacking attempts. The current legislation prohibits any action by ASIO that, among other things, interferes with a person's legitimate use of their computer. Conceivably, over-turning this restriction would give ASIO the ability to build their own bot-net of compromised machines. Perhaps inevitably, they say these changes are required to help them catch terrorists."

If it's on the Internet, it must be true! (Except when it's true fiction) Of course there are other way to “pay” bloggers. You could send me free stuff to review (computers, books, cars?) or perhaps other perks like a night in the Lincoln bedroom (probably not with this President.)
"BBC News reports the Vietnamese Communist Party is approaching its internet image in a more sophisticated manner by hiring shill bloggers to argue its case. From the article: 'Hanoi Propaganda and Education Department head Ho Quang Loi said that the authorities had hired hundreds of so-called "internet polemists" in the fight against "online hostile forces." While the exact number of these activists is unknown, Mr Loi revealed that his organisation is running at least 400 online accounts and 20 microblogs. Regular visitors on popular social media networks in Vietnam such as Facebook have long noticed the existence of a number of pro-regime bloggers, who frequently post comments and articles supportive of the Communist Party. The bloggers also take part in online discussions, where they fiercely attack anybody who they see as critical of the regime.'"

Of course, there are other ways to reward supporters (as in campaign contributors)
Video game industry emerges from White House meetings unscathed
… While Biden said he called the meeting in part to examine whether the U.S. was undergoing a "coarsening of our culture," that wasn't the main thrust of the behind-closed-doors meeting.
Instead, the meeting seemed centered around exploring a deeper knowledge of existing research into the impact of gaming on youth and how the industry can take proactive, positive steps to improve its image among the broader, non-gamer population. [You should tell everyone you're “Educational” and “Non-fattening” and “Good for the environment!” Bob]

All taxing authorities (all governments) want moer tax revenue. This type of thing comes up whenever pressure to raise revenue occurs at the same time as the gullibility of lawmakers is high. Do you really believe spending billions to replace cash registers and billions to maintain (and audit) them will result in a net gain in revenue? If you pay me in cash and I never go near the register, what tax do you get? More importantly, what happens if small businesses NEED to cheat a bit on taxes to survive?
"The Norwegian Ministry of Finance seems to be taking a bit of stick at the moment. It wants all the existing cash registers in the country thrown out and replaced with new ones. Not surprisingly, this massive upgrade is not popular. But it is apparently being pushed through in an attempt to prevent cash registers' figures being massaged downwards in use so as to reduce tax. The Norwegian association of tax auditors said: 'The source code must be opened.' 'Without source code it is not possible to determine whether or "hidden" functionality exists or not. Just knowing that the tax authorities have access to the source code of the application, will reduce the effort to implement hidden functionality in the software.'"

Do we have the same rights sex offenders do?
Judge Halts California Internet Sex-Offender Law
A federal judge late Friday blocked enforcement of a California voter-approved measure that would have dramatically curtailed the online, First Amendment rights of registered sex offenders.
Proposition 35, which passed with 81 percent of the vote in November, would have required anyone who is a registered sex offender — including people with misdemeanor offenses such as indecent exposure and whose offenses were not related to activity on the internet — to turn over to law enforcement a list of all identifiers they use online as well as a list of service providers they use.

See? You can be Social and still make money, but anti-social makes it faster.
Find out how your favorite sites on the web make money. “How Do They Make Money” is an interactive site that lets you quickly find your favorite tech companies, and you should check it out.
… Head to How Do They Make Money to get started.

For my students... Has the RIAA learned that customers like this kind of freedom or does Amazon have really good lawyers?
"Amazon just debuted a new service called Autorip, which grants you MP3 copies of music when you purchase the CD version. This is a technology people have been trying to introduce since 1999, but only recently have the record labels — and the courts — seen fit to allow it. 'Robertson's first company, was one of the hottest startups in Silicon Valley when it launched what we would now call a cloud music service,, in 1999. The service included a feature called "Beam-It" that allowed users to instantly stock their online lockers with music from their personal CD collections. ... Licensed services like iTunes were still years in the future, largely because labels were skittish about selling music online. But Robertson believed he didn't need a license because the service was permitted by copyright's fair use doctrine. If a user can rip his legally purchased CD to his computer, why can't he also store a copy of it online? ... the labels simply weren't interested in Robertson's vision of convenient and flexible music lockers. So was driven into bankruptcy, and the "buy a CD, get an MP3" concept fell by the wayside.'"

Better than nothing? More likely, sticking a toe into a much wider market than the $500-$10,000 per year subscription market.
January 12, 2013
JSTOR opens free access to limited number of articles
Via Meredith Schwartz: "The archives of more than 1,200 journals are now available for limited free reading by the public, JSTOR announced [January 9, 2013]. Anyone can sign up for a JSTOR account and read up to three articles for free every two weeks."

This has long been predicted as the path to real global education. Not necessairily the best expert in the field, but the best teacher in the field can teach a global audience. 100,000 student MOOCs are already heading in that direction.
Could the future of education be taught by industry experts in an online setting? Udemy is trying to find out thanks to their new Teach2013 tool. It’s basically a call for experts and thought leaders to teach their own online courses.
They’re hoping a crowd of people will encourage people like Bill Gates, Michelle Obama, Richard Branson, and Biz Stone to answer the call. Udemy would of course stand to benefit from getting these big names, but it’s an interesting approach and it may not work. Only time will tell.
Udemy, the leading online education marketplace, today launched Teach2013, a campaign designed to empower and encourage industry experts worldwide to create online courses and deliver them to people around the globe in 2013.
… Once experts express interest in teaching online, Udemy will provide an array of tools and resources to help them build and deliver courses that meet Udemy’s standards for course quality. Those resources and tools include access to Udemy’s proprietary Course Creation Platform and an invitation to Udemy’s online instructor community, “The Udemy Studio”, where experts can interact and discuss best practices for building a Massive Open Online Course (MOOC). Some experts will also receive production assistance from Udemy.

Wadda you say we start a KickStarter project to fund the minting of a limited number of Trillion Dollar coins (not US currancy) just to show the world that we could have done it if we wanted to. $10 (in real US currancy) gets you a coin, $25 gets a coin and a T-Shirt that says “Let me show you how I can solve the debt crisis!”
Treasury: We won’t mint a platinum coin to sidestep the debt ceiling

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