Jon's blog

Esperanza En Accion

Submitted by Jon on Wed, 08/09/2006 - 09:29

I'm on the technology committee of the Esperanza En Accion board, and as part of this, and in fulfilling a long-standing promise to EeA's director, I'm off to Managua, Nicaragua to help out with their computer systems, networks, IT planning, and also to see Nicaragua.

Net Neutrality

Submitted by Jon on Sat, 08/05/2006 - 15:53

Dan Kaminsky is working on a software testing tool to check to see if your ISP is giving equal quality to all your traffic, or if they are favoring certain types of traffic (VOIP over web pages, or throttling all bittorrent traffic to a crawl) or preferring certain sites (AOL over Google, based on who's paid more).


Submitted by Jon on Sat, 08/05/2006 - 15:43

Steven Johnson has a nice quick list of topics we can move beyond when discussing blogs:

1. Mainstream, top-down, professional journalism will continue to play a vital role in covering news events, and in shaping our interpretation of those events, as it should.
5. Blogs -- like all modes of contemporary media -- are not historically unique; they draw upon and resemble a number of past traditions and forms, depending on their focus.

I guess this helps me narrow down my paper topics :)

IPR and ... plants?

Submitted by Jon on Sat, 08/05/2006 - 15:19

Brazil is registering list of plant names to fight pharma companies from trademarking the names when using compounds extracted from these plants.
India also has been fighting "biopiracy".

This is a reminder that intellectual property restrictions extend beyond IT and media issues, into important topics such as affordable medicines when it intersects with pharmaceuticals.

"Launch At" ?

Submitted by Jon on Wed, 07/12/2006 - 11:27

Techsoup has a good interview with the Chief Connectivity Officer, Michael Bletsas, of OLPC. Unfortunately, it does nothing to quell my concerns about their deployment strategy. Once I get comments back from my paper exploring the OLPC project from a diffusion theory standpoint, I'll post at least the abstract online, but until then, Bletsas condenses my main point of contention into one paragraph:

The Dutch Boy vs. the Great Firewall

Submitted by Jon on Fri, 06/30/2006 - 00:09

a fascinating analysis reveals that for the keyword-blocking aspects of the Chinese firewall, there is a simple workaround where you can just ignore its effects. This doesn't get around the sites which are blocked, but as the report points out, those are relatively costly to maintain accurate lists of. Regardless, score one for the hackers.

Collective Action

Submitted by Jon on Sun, 06/11/2006 - 09:59 is running an article by Jaron Lanier on the current drive towards meta-content and collective-rule on the Internet (think Wikipedia, BoingBoing, Digg, etc.), and some responses from leaders of "The Collective".

Choice in IP regulation a barrier to WTO entry?

Submitted by Jon on Sun, 06/04/2006 - 10:13

Russia's copyright law is different from ours. I imagine there's lots of differences in lots of laws, some of which may be distasteful or just odd to anyone but Russian citizens. This is part of being a sovereign nation, with a different set of institutions and a distinct history, you develop laws according to what you need in your society.'

OLPC is Linux, after all

Submitted by Jon on Tue, 05/23/2006 - 14:34

Re-mapping development

Submitted by Jon on Fri, 05/12/2006 - 18:15

The WorldMapper remaps the globe according to various statistics gathered mostly by the Bank and the IMF. Particularly interesting are the maps for license fee exports and imports. You can very visually see some winners and losers.

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