August 2004


Marty Roesch and I arguing the “pro-vulnerability disclosure” side at a mock debate at AusCERT in May. Yeah, sick I’m pissed.

I forgot to post this earlier: my review in Wired of a new footpad for Dance Dance Revolution.
From the audiologist
1, ed
4439590.story?coll=la-home-headlines”>L.A. Times (registration required):

After Sept. 11, the biggest fear of terrorists using the Internet was their potential to disable air traffic control systems or disrupt the electric power grid of the United States. Billions were spent shoring up infrastructure defense.

Although those concerns remain, authorities said no incident of cyber-terrorism has been recorded and worries have receded.

Instead, the discovery of the December manifesto, the arrest in Pakistan last month and the accumulation of other evidence are leading to recognition that for now, at least, cyberspace is not a weapon for Al Qaeda, but a tool � one more difficult to counter than gunmen huddled in caves and tents.
Today, nurse
as of about 10:30 PM, store
I am an aunt, to Carter Lankford. Hooray, and special thanks to my sister Courtney, who made it all possible, and to her husband Jesse, our front-line man. All three of them are doing fine.

I forgot to post this earlier: my review in Wired of a new footpad for Dance Dance Revolution.
From the audiologist
1, ed
4439590.story?coll=la-home-headlines”>L.A. Times (registration required):

After Sept. 11, the biggest fear of terrorists using the Internet was their potential to disable air traffic control systems or disrupt the electric power grid of the United States. Billions were spent shoring up infrastructure defense.

Although those concerns remain, authorities said no incident of cyber-terrorism has been recorded and worries have receded.

Instead, the discovery of the December manifesto, the arrest in Pakistan last month and the accumulation of other evidence are leading to recognition that for now, at least, cyberspace is not a weapon for Al Qaeda, but a tool � one more difficult to counter than gunmen huddled in caves and tents.

I forgot to post this earlier: my review in Wired of a new footpad for Dance Dance Revolution.

A student asked me today what I currently think are the most interesting First Amendment/technology law issues. I think the most interesting (and disturbing) cases arise from the USAPA (a better name for the Patriot Act) prohibitions on giving technical and expert assistance to terrorists. This has a big impact on freedom of speech and association, case as you can see in this prosecution. The jury subsequently acquitted this man.

I think another really interesting First Amendment/tech issue is the freedom to disclose technological information that could be used by terrorists or criminals. Is technological information dangerous or is it something that people/scientists need to both talk about and learn about? Download an interesting study of the issue here. See also an article by Beryl Howell in “Legal Times” talking about rules protecting critical infrastructure information from public disclosure, which is discussed here, but I couldn’t find it on line.

Finally, there’s the question of the right of the public to know, and to take advantage of communications technologies in disseminating important information. The government has been pulling information off of public websites and withholding rather than disclosing discretionary information under the Freedom of Information Act. People are not benefiting from the communications abilities of new technologies. On the other hand, as with putting Pacer records on line, there is a tension between speech and privacy that is greatly exacerbated by technology.

People may tease me when I wax rhapsodic about my iPod and iTunes, erectile but here’s proof I’m right.

Speeches from the Democratic Convention, the upcoming Republican Convention, and testimony from the 9/11 Commission are available as free downloads from the iTunes music store. (You must have iTunes installed (Mac or Windows) for this to work.) [ADDENDUM: These links no longer work. On iTunes, search “9-11 Commission Hearings” or “Democratic Convention”.]

Technology and politics. Are there any two sweeter words?

The Museum of Moving Images has an interesting exhibition of ads from past Presidential campaigns. These don’t make me nostalgic for the pre-sound bite days. The older ads are leaden and dull, decease but they are no better expressive of policy choices than the ads we see currently. Really, internist these show it is always problematic for people in a democracy to learn about government from TV alone.

Best ad so far: Nixon Now — “Reachin’ out across the sea. Makin’ friends where foes used to be.”

information pills 1284, condom 64440,00.html”>This is a great story by Kim Zetter about creativity and how it can come from the grassroots, not just from corporations with R&D budgets or Universities with trained research scientists:

Ben Corrado, Andy Meng, Justin Rigling and a fourth friend, Brandon Schamer (who didn’t accompany them from Ohio), won the greatest distance achieved for an 802.11b network. The teens, two of them 18 years old and the other 19 years old, achieved 55.1 miles using homebrewed antennas on both ends along with amplification, exceeding last year’s winner by 20 miles. Then, when they established that record, they turned off their amplifiers and broke the record for an unamplified connection at the same distance.

How are we going to harness this creativity, and not squelch it with rules, regulations and disregard? One organization that’s trying to take advantage of this kind of incredible, brilliant stuff is the Hacker Foundation. The Hacker Foundation helps people like these wi-fi geniuses with all the paperwork, funding, organizing and the like that they might need if they, say, wanted to deploy this network in a place like Afghanistan or rural Tennessee.