Kotako is being dehosted ... (02 May 2002)

Kotako is being dehosted as of June 1st after years of fine service (kotako runs So I'm moving my mail to - which involves re-subscribing to far too many mailing lists - but I'm getting there. Maybe I can get's MX pointed to so I can run a forwarding service for a while.

This was posted to Slashdot - but I don't care I'm going to post it here too because it's a really great list of major software bugs. It's nearly all `physical effect' bugs thou (for example it doesn't count things like the Ping Of Death). Funny reading - if a little scary

I think I've got a decent grip on Garbage Collectors now and damm, it's a nasty problem. I have a few design ideas which I should write up at some point.

The Bloody Sunday Inquiry has demanded that two Channel 4 journalists reveal anonymous sources, on pain of contempt of count. Quite frankly I don't see any way that you couldn't hold such a court in anything but contempt. If the sources had not been granted anonymity then they would never have said anything - the inquiry should be grateful for what they have. Forcing disclosure will only damage future inquiries and alienate people against this one. At least the two reporters have refused for the moment.( Guardian story with some great quotes from the reporters).

Another good story (and another link to the Guardian). I wonder if you could retrofit a computer to a car (a proper computer) and live your whole life in a car? Drive-thru everything, wireless internet access, a postal box to get your internet ordered stuff delivered (it would have to be drive thou of course). You would be the totally mobile citizen, telecommuting and living out of your car. The only problem I can't work round (reasonably) is toilet stops. But I suppose you could have a toilet fitted and store the waste somewhere in the car until you find a place to, erm, dispose of it.

I'm sure people have seen Jamie Kellner's `views' on PVRs. If not - see the Slashdot story. Comments about the stupidity of this guy aside (and I loved Ian's Tivo) it seems to me this is an example of the Tragedy of the Commons. As long as people watch adverts on TV (actually, for as long as marketing people think they do) - everyone gets free content. However, some people can skip the adverts (either by not watching or by using PVRs) and get free content without suffering the adverts. And let's face it - nearly all adverts are just painful. This works until too many people do it and marketing people realise that ads don't work and so people have to pay for content.

Now, I really don't want to be seen to be agreeing that "PVR Users Are Thieves" (because I'm not) - but it looks like the current system is fundamentally unstable and will fall at some point. Now the thing not to do is to try to pin reality somewhere it doesn't want to be with laws and fuckware which force people to watch adverts (HDTV and the like). One point where the link with the T of the C fails is that in true T of the C situations everyone is worse off afterwards. I don't see that this is true in this case. I wouldn't have a problem paying for what little TV I watch if it were advert free (assuming a decent micropayments system).

But then people will be trading DivX's of shows and they'll still be bleating about users being thieves. And you can bet they'll still be trying to pin reality with laws and fuckware. Sigh.