<< May 2003 | July 2003 >>
cats are crazy about catnip, but what's in it for the plant? - AmSci
the biochemistry of insect repellents and rat poison
$40000/year indoctrination camp for kids of the rich - Observer [via K5]
complete with brain-washing, group-criticism sessions, and psychological torture
China's growing impact on world trade - Economist
"demand for cargo space is so strong that container lines can barely keep up. The reason? Mainly the rapid growth in China's foreign trade."
one 11 year-old run over, several score more enemies for the US - BBC [via Billmon]
is do-it-yourself dying out? Dare to Repair
review - WashM
"the recession of '03 may force us to learn the humbling tedium of toilet repair"
the new anti-Semitism: Hollywood and the Arabs - Independent [via Agonist]
the sorry state of civil liberties in Australia - News
"Australians are one of the most spied on people in the Western world, with mail interceptions and telephone taps rising daily."
the Supreme Court allows Congress to censor library users - OJR [via ShiftL]
"tens of thousands of legitimate sites were wrongly blocked by filtering programs, making them all possible litigants in a class-action suit"
Europe is about to accept software patents - Register
captured Iraqi leaders should be tried for war crimes or released - Guardian
but the US wants to hold prisoners with no accountability to anyone
places to visit in southern Iceland - south.is
work on a Welsh operating system - ZDnet [via OSAU]
"If I wanted to get a Welsh version of Windows, it would mean a lot of lobbying and probably spending a lot of money"
handing Iraq over to US corporations - Guardian
"The existing US plans for Iraq's economic diversification appear to owe more to corporate contractors than to the interests of the country's people"
Matthue Roth mixes poetry, Orthodox Judaism, and sex - Forward [via Moor]
Jorn is back! - Robot Wisdom
tubers, cooked or uncooked, are out
irony and its metamorphoses - Guardian [via /.]
the US is "shooting in the dark" in Afghanistan - Asia
"The hard truth is that US intelligence simply does not really know what is going on in the Taliban and al-Qaeda camps."
Rumsfeld: no "guerilla warfare" in Iraq - MercuryNews
so a) there's no way to "win", no central organising force to be destroyed or negotiated with, and b) if a real guerilla war starts, things are going to get much, much worse
an introduction to bridge designs - pghbridges [via JWalk]
Hensher is not too taken by the latest Harry Potter - Spectator [via CR]
"what it most resembles is an episode of Scooby-Doo extended to the point of lunacy"
the Agonist is in Tashkent, heading for Samarkand - SilkRoad
can Europe break the link between farm production and subsidies? - Economist
"the idea is to replace these with a direct payment to farmers, unconnected to particular products"
Salam Pax is getting less optimistic - Raed
"things have been moving in a downward spiral. The coalition forces dont feel safe and we dont feel safe either. You can see the distrust in their eyes and the way they hold these big guns towards you when you move close to a check point."
photos of praying mantises - Kleptography [via JWalk]
and lots of other photos from Hong Kong
genocide in the Congo; children murdered, raped, enslaved - CanadaEast [via Agonist]
three million killed since 1998... surely a way better case for humanitarian intervention than Iraq
airport scanner shows subjects naked - GlobeMail [via EFA]
"It does basically make you look fat and naked, but you see all this stuff"
Nike loses free speech case in US Supreme Court - Guardian
"The supreme court did not make a judgment on the case but ruled that the claim had no place in the court."
the US Supreme Court rules against anti-sodomy laws - Kuro5hin
a bio-sketch of Yukio Mishima - sci.fi
there's surprisingly little about Mishima online
Monrovia a nightmare battle-zone - Guardian
the Americans are using torture - and proud of it - Independent [via Agonist]
Australian senate blocks media concentration - SMH [via RtoS]
"Australia's democracy survived by 37 votes to 32 tonight, when the Senate insisted that Rupert Murdoch and Kerry Packer not be permitted to overwhelmingly control Australia's media."
New York Times reporter Judith Miller ran her own war in Iraq - Billmon
The Empire Strikes Back - Nation [via Billmon]
"The United States under Bush is driving toward empire, but the domestic political fuel being fed into the engine is that of a wounded and vengeful nationalism"
a special issue for George Orwell's birthday - EPIC Alert [via Link]
(that's the Electronic Privacy Information Center)
how the six British military police died - Guardian
"the British troops shot and killed four civilian demonstrators on Tuesday"
a firsthand account of SARS in China and Thailand - APMF
the US was using outdated cluster bombs in Iraq - NewsDay [via Agonist]
"Countries that have fought wars on their own soil, most notably Israel, have made improvements, out of fear that duds would harm their own civilians"
Dr Francois Gasse and the crusade against tetanus - SMH
the evil things web designers try to do to users - Dan [via JWalk]
a history of the Public Trust Doctrine - OrionOnline [via PhilG]
"the idea of the commons may seem an integral part of the democracy Americans so proudly defend, [but] it is a concept often ignored by environmental lawyers"
DeCode Genetics not going anywhere with Icelandic Health Sector Database - CIO
lack of resources and popular resistance
differing interpretations of Ayodhya archaeological digs - HiPakistan
it was built on a mosque! - no a temple! - a mosque! - a temple!
Alexander the Great is not a good business model - Spectator
the 1st Armoured is taking on Iraq - at soccer - Guardian
yikes, soccer games can be bad enough at the best of times
7-day detentions without charge - one after the other! - SMH
the latest in the Australian ASIO Bill (a la US PATRIOT)
a new analysis of the Inca knot code - Independent
"a seven-bit binary code capable of conveying more than 1,500 separate units of information"
the Penguin on the Desktop - Register
"our expectation is that the Linux desktop will 'cross the chasm' this year, and start to proliferate next year. It is beginning to look unstoppable."
US to leave Iceland without air defenses - TaipeiTimes
Iceland threatens to close down entire Keflavik base in response
a review of Halldor Laxness's The Atom Station
America and the Struggle for Islamic Democracy - After Jihad [review]
the divide between the scientists and the Republican party - WashMonthly
"When required to seek input from scientists, the administration tends to actively recruit those few who will bolster the positions it already knows it wants to support, even if that means defying scientific consensus."
In Contempt of Courtship - WashMonthly
"Why we love to watch others date, but hate to do it ourselves."
interesting criteria for defining "terrorist" - WashMonthly [via SideS]
60 of 62 "international terrorists" were "Middle Eastern students who had cheated on a test; specifically, they had paid others to take an English proficiency exam"
author Patrick White now neglected in his own country - SMH [via CR]
he won the 1973 Nobel Prize for Literature, but is no longer widely read in Australia
updated position paper on SCO-vs-IBM - OSI
Eric Raymond's done a good job putting this one together
ICANN can screw up the Net... - Register
... just as long as it doesn't threaten jobs in the US Northwest
the Indian obsession with China - Economist
"Some comparisons are stark enough to generate a national inferiority complex"
things have calmed down in Fallujah? - AP/Guardian
complaining about media attention after twenty protestors were killed is a bit much, though
should corporations have First Amendment rights? - TomPaine [via OneWorld]
the future of America's car industry - PhilG
"The June 14 issue of The Economist has 'Extinction of the Car Giants -- Why America's car industry is an endangered species' on its cover."
Israel about to write racism into law - EI
the bill "rescinds the right of Israeli residents and citizens who have married residents of the Occupied Territories to establish their home in Israel"
today is World Refugee Day - UNHCR [sucky site, unfortunately]
Sydney rally is 12 noon Sunday 22nd June Hyde Park
Oracle, Peoplesoft, J D Edwards are all into Linux - Register
"virtually every major business software vendor that isn't owned by Microsoft is embracing Linux... building their products on Linux and actively promoting Linux as the best, most flexible, lowest-cost, and most secure server platform"
Total gets a bit carried away with their new logo - Register
"Btw, we can think of another rotational movement: that of the revolving doors at Total HQ as you and everyone else responsible for this astonishing clap-trap are dragged into the street and beaten senseless by baton-wielding members of the Académie Française."
is IBM the next big thing? - Economist
"IBM is poised to lead Silicon Valley's struggling tech firms out of recession"
Extremadura regional government deploys 80 000 Linux desktops - BusinessWire [via LWN]
in schools and in 33 general access computing centres
excellent overview of Iraq situation - Guardian
"British troops are one fatwa short of the treatment being meted out to the Americans further north"
Encouraging literacy through Speculative Fiction - Reading for the Future
a volunteer organisation inspired by David Brin
the economics of the American Empire are not so healthy - Billmon
"Either American living standards will have to be adjusted downward, imperial ambitions will have to be curbed, or Americas foreign creditors will have to agree to some kind of a workout."
Iran, Iraq, and Shi'ite religious politics - Asia
"Will Iran and Iraq complement each other? The answer may hinge on the impact of the more than 3,000 Iraqi Shi'ite religious leaders who came back home from exile in Iran."
66 kilobytes for a one word email! - RadSoft [via Link]
US cotton subsidies are destroying West African farmers - Independent [via Agonist]
"Last year, cotton subsidies amounted to almost $4bn - three times the sum given by the US to treat HIV and Aids in Africa."
catching taxis in Baghdad can be dangerous - Raed
"do you think if I hide a hand grenade under the dash board they would be able to find it?"
Google now offering page-targeted text ads for smaller sites - WMW
I'm giving this a try...
Howard cancels question time to welcome home Iraq veterans - SMH
claims it's too early to judge on WMD, "because you haven't given the inspection process a proper opportunity"
not much political activism in Baghdad University - Salam Pax
useless technological "innovation": a rant - Guardian [via /.]
what really happened to Iraq's museums - Guardian
"Millions of books have been burned, thousands of manuscripts and archaeological artefacts stolen or destroyed, ancient cities ransacked, universities trashed."
a rant about haiku - D2 [no permalink]
"If you're thinking of writing a haiku, don't do it. Or at the very least, don't share it with anyone. If you can't avoid that, at least try to keep it secret from me."
television and cultural change in Bhutan - Guardian [via Agonist]
"The marijuana that flourishes like a weed in every Bhutanese hedgerow was only ever used to feed pigs before the advent of TV"
new evidence for the history of chocolate - IHT
Iraq's court system needs work - and maybe the policing, too - Guardian
"two dozen men were playing backgammon and drinking tea. All were lined up against a fence, blindfolded, forced to kneel and carted away on trucks. They were released later, after none turned out to be suspects."
nice photos of Bodiam castle, Kent - SueB
so much hot air produced by hydrogen-production trailers - Billmon
SCO VP: Syria, Libya, North Korea building supercomputers with Linux - Byte [via /.]
sounds like they're getting just a little desperate - after all, the US government is also using Linux to build supercomputers
the US' Iranian policy plays into the hands of the hard-liners - Asia
"the new wave of student protests in Iran ... began last Tuesday as a move against the Iranian government's plan to privatize universities"
the quiet death of the major relaunch - UIE [via Dane]
"There was a time when sites launched in cycles, living from one major redesign to the next. Each new redesign would bring a whole new look, a whole new user experience."
branding a black spot to unbrand America - AdBusters [via JWalk]
love strikes a Spanish nun - The Year of the Flood [review]
Eduardo Mendoza's short novel of a Catalan village in the 1950s
Iranian intellectuals sign statement calling for reform - Guardian
how this all works out will depend on the divides within the clergy - a secular Iran isn't one of the plausible options, whatever the US Administration may fantasize
the dog ate my Weapons of Mass Destruction - TruthOut [via Atrios]
"They lied. Period. Trust a teacher on this. We can spot liars who have not done their homework a mile away."
Baghdad is not what it used to be - NYROB
"The scene at the deserted National Library in Baghdad looks almost too staged to be true... The sign appears to be the only intact article of literature left, out of a collection of one million volumes, twenty million periodicals, and many original manuscripts."
The Map and the Fence: Israel and the Palestinians - NYROB
"I could see jagged, broken sewage pipes emptying into a pool of fetid water. 'When we repair the bridges and the pipes,' the mayor said, 'the Israelis bomb them again.'"
primatologist Robert Sapolsky on baboons and social inhibitions - Edge [via ALD]
"What's clear to me now at 45 is, screw the alpha male stuff. Go for an alternative strategy. Go for the social affiliation, build relationships with females"
white-collar unemployment in the US as jobs move to India - Fortune [via /.]
Prince Kropotkin's Ghost: cooperation in children and primates - AmSci
Christian evangelists in Iraq - Austin [via Kos]
Sun Microsystem's prospects - Wired [via /.]
the United States and the world - George Soros [via SideS]
"the fight for a global open society has to be fought in the US"
is the United States going to have to reintroduce the draft? - Tacitus
David Stratton on the banning of Ken Park
- Australian [via EFA]
mobile trailers had nothing to do with WMD - Guardian
"They are not mobile germ warfare laboratories. You could not use them for making biological weapons. They do not even look like them. They are exactly what the Iraqis said they were - facilities for the production of hydrogen gas to fill balloons."
whale-hunting versus whale-watching in Iceland - CBS
"More than 277,000 people visited Iceland in 2001 and the tourist association estimates a third of the tourists went whale watching"
Russian military officers are being retrained as Cisco specialists - Register
by the British Ministry of Defence
the first of the royal pretenders arrives in Iraq - Raed
a massive ranking of blogs by inbound links - Truth Laid Bear [via Atrios]
US political blogs head the list - this blog comes in at #1489, making it a "fish" on the blog evolutionary scale
is the influence of the Turkish military fading? - Economist
"The generals, it seems, are rattled, especially since their old friends in the United States have joined the ranks of their critics"
Zeitgeist for May - Google
top Australian animal searches: fish, dogs, horses, cats, green tree frog
the problems facing university presses - Chronicle [via CR]
The Matrix Reloaded
banned in Egypt - BBC [via /.]
"the storyline, about the search for the creator and control of the human race, may cause 'crises'"
three days of protests in Iran - Guardian
they're calling for the death of supreme leader Khamenei, yikes
the Australia gives sanctuary to Bangladeshi ex-PM convicted of corruption - SMH
but poor Afghan and Iraqi refugees are out -- they can't contribute to Liberal party campaign funds
US man charged with hijacking Al-Jazeera web site, DNS - Register
an Apache and an F-16 lost in Iraq - Guardian
a bit of a step up from ambushes with small arms
US Democratic candidate Howard Dean is running a Net-savvy campaign - TNR [via Kos]
a Google employee answers some questions - WMW
Microsoft to produce its own anti-virus software - CNN
does that leave any software companies that aren't their competitors?
dormant IP address blocks are being hijacked - Register
ICANN has been in the spotlight, but it looks like ARIN has problems too
is "Unix" now generic? Apple versus the Open Group - news.com [via /.]
East Timor is now Timor Leste - WIPO [PDF, via RtoS]
and TP changes to TL - and Macau is now Macao
the music industry vs Australian unis: Federal Court decision - Austlii
in discovery, what is the granularity of a "document"?
the Cod Wars: Iceland versus Britain in the 1950s and 1970s - SmallWars
world attitudes to: Iraq, democracy, Islam, globalization - Pew survey [1MB PDF, 297 pages!]
"in most countries, opinions of the U.S. are markedly lower than they were a year ago"
Cynthia Ozick tells the story of Helen Keller - NYer [via ALD]
(I read my first Ozick recently: The Puttermesser Papers)
the opposition to free software in US governments - Linux Journal [via /.]
ok guide to using compact digital cameras - TASI [via Link]
I'm currently ebaying for more compact flash and another battery for mine
two dead, thirty wounded in the latest Israeli terrorist attack - EI
talking of which, Robert Fisk has an extensive site - Fisk
looks like the Baghdad Museum wasn't nearly as badly looted as feared - Guardian
just what the world needs - Japanese troops in Iraq - Guardian
but I guess it's safer than deploying them in Southeast Asia...
do Windschuttle, Velikovksy, Lomborg, and Creationists fit a pattern? - Quiggin [via RtoS]
UN envoy reports Aung San Suu Kyi "well and in good spirits" - SFGate
religion, family planning, and programming lessons in Kenya - Kuro5hin
a Geek Volunteer Overseas reports
fungus of the month pages - Wisconsin [via JWalk]
Christian fundamentalists support Zionism - Guardian/CD
"the Israeli government has long exploited its connections with far-right US Christian groups"
two UK councils moving to desktop Linux - ZDnet [vi OSAU]
these stories aren't that exciting in themselves, but they're becoming more frequent...
did language evolve in leaps? - Nature
physicists suggest that human communication underwent a 'phase transition'
Bechtel and the privatisation of Iraq - Corpwatch
the film Ken Park
is banned in Australia - SMH
renewed push in US for sanctions against Burma regime - Yahoo
is the CIA 5 years behind with computer technology? - BBC
Baghdad: cafes, art galleries, and insane asylums - Guardian
Iraq (mis)-intelligence part of an Orwellian world - Guardian [via SideS]
can Sonia Gandhi build a Congress party capable of ruling India again? - Asia
Tony Blair still defending Niger uranium claims - Guardian
SCO paralegal stumbles over amendment to 1995 contract with Novell - news.com
but Novell itself can't find a copy! - is this a farce?
Social Connectivities in Global Financial Markets - Edinburgh [270k PDF, via D2]
baboons, Chicago open-outcry pits, FX text-messaging, the LTCM crash
the wind on Saturn drops to 1100 km/hour - SMH
Chechen suicide bomber kills 16 in bus attack - Indepdendent [via Agonist]
the state of democracy in Israel - Israel Democracy Institute [via EI]
"Israel is mainly a formal democracy that has not yet acquired the characteristics of a substantive democracy"
Singapore drops WiFi for 3G - Register
leaving WiFi for local and community groups?
an update on Iran's internal political struggles - Asia
"Khatami presented to the Iranian parliament two bills... one to secure his constitutional power as president... Another to limit the Guardian Council's control over the election process"
1995 contract between SCO and Novell leaves situation mirky - news.com [via LWN]
problems finding Net connectivity in the UK - PhilG
"How to connect then when in the UK? It is as simple as getting on a plane at Heathrow Airport... I'm in Tel Aviv now."
Oz police investigate "hyperlinking crime" - AustralianIT
Baggy Green links to CricInfo, CricInfo has ads for online betting agencies...
Human Rights Watch criticises British administration of Basra - Guardian
can thermoacoustic coupling replace pistons? - AmSci
a journalist discovers his interpreter is more widely read than he is - Slate [via Raed]
Google: 3 000 results for "Peter Maass", 20 000 for "Salam Pax"
Philip Adams on the attack on Australian public broadcasting - Australian [via Link]
"HERE is the ABC News, as approved by Senator Richard Alston."
Marc Hauser on the numerical abilities of animals - AmSci
an interview about free software in South America - Linux Journal
I will be visiting Iceland in August/September - travel plans
(Are there any Icelanders among my readers?)
Aung San Suu Kyi taken into "protective custody" in Burma - Guardian
according to one source she has a serious head injury
an embedded reporter is criticised for challenging the TV view of the war - EandP [via ProRev]
"One woman even suggested I start watching more Fox TV to get an unbiased view"
this man is not happy about his government's lies - Paul Krugman [via Atrios]
will Disney's fish flick be good or bad for the pet fish industry? - WND [via Irreverent]
Cook and Short are keeping Blair under fire over Iraq - Guardian
James Hanley's haunting novel - The Welsh Sonata [review]
love and loss in a Welsh mining district
Ted Turner speaks out against FCC proposals - WP/CD
"rule changes that will extend the market dominance of the five media corporations that control most of what Americans read, see and hear"
Y chromosome study finds strong Celtic legacy in Britain - IHT
train-spotters told to leave UK railway stations - BBC [via SideS]
"Unless we know who these people are, and what they are doing, it's best to be on the safe side"
anarchists take over Baghdad comms centre, offer free Net access - Raed
"Not a million bad things could have wiped the grin off my face when I read that little note"
an unhappy time for the UN in the Congo - Independent [via Agonist]
two peackeepers tortured to death
the 3rd Annual Nigerian EMail Conference - JWalk [via /.]
Indian President urges industry to consider free software - FinExpress
aid, trade, investment and debt relief at the Evian summit - Economist
can the housing boom last? - Economist [8 pages]
"the latest housing boom has inflated bubbles in several countries, notably America, Australia, Britain, Ireland, the Netherlands and Spain. Within the next year or so those bubbles are likely to burst, leading to falls in average real house prices of 15-20% in America and 30% or more elsewhere"
Andrew Wilkie on the Australian part in the WMD intelligence debacle - SMH
"if a government chooses to believe only what it wants to believe and selects from the intelligence only what best suits its political purposes ... the result can be a fine compost indeed"
the Complete Review gives China Miéville a B+ - Perdido Street Station
- The Scar
I've been meaning to try Miéville's fantasy for some time; friends keep recommending him
in Aceh, Indonesia emulates the US in Iraq - Asia Times
and threatens Sweden for giving asylum to fugitive Acehnese leaders
Russia won't stop non-military nuclear cooperation with Iran - Asia Times
Bushehr power plant to go ahead, "readiness to cooperate on building five more"
<< May 2003 | July 2003 >>