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{ Category Archives } Opinion

Why Snowden is no Agee and why it is authoritarian thinking to compare the two

The blog War on the Rocks (of which I had never heard before, but who needs serendipity when you follow eccentrics on Twitter) recently ran a piece by Mark Stout arguing that if Edward Snowden should get clemency, so should Philip Agee. It does so by drawing a bunch of analogies, that are at mostly […]

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Walter’s (slightly) drunken theory on political ideology

Vinay Gupta is to blame for this post. Anyway, for quite a while I’ve harbored a slightly drunken theory about political ideology. Meaning that your political ideology might very well reflect your inner demons or greatest strengths. Or both for that matter. It is one of those thoughts that makes the world make sense of […]

Peak resource and things that won’t necesarily change, nr. 1: global supply chains

Old trends often come back in a different form. A current trend is a feeling that we are running out of resources in the way the Club of Rome predicted in its famous ‘Limits to Growth’ report from 1972, the year I was born. That this particular theme has been resurrected from its shallow grave […]

Dear e-reader designers and producers…

When I buy an e-reader, I like… simplicity; versatility in file formats; being able to use the damn thing while it is tethered to a computer for the purpose of charging its battery; it to respect any directory structure I have put on any media I may insert into it. Because I do not like… […]

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Hackerspace incorporation patterns

As a mere participant of Revelation Space, a hackerspace (or makerspace, if you will) in The Hague, who also happens to practice law (but not corporate law), I found this article on hackerspaces.org interesting. Interesting but incomplete. Incomplete because it doesn’t really explore perfectly reasonable combinations of the patterns described. Also incomplete, because it reeks […]

Useful idiots/so-called hackers

Last week two bits of news struck me as misguided. First there was a court in Amsterdam stating that abuse of a WiFi network, does not equal breaking into a computer system, even if such a WiFi network had some form of security measures such as password protection. Lots of geeky types, including those identify […]

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Korean Zombie PC Prevention Bill

One can hope that legislative stupidity is not contagious, but would be terminally naive to do so. So although the Korean proposals for a bill that makes security software on computers mandatory and grants the authorities the power to check for the existence of mandated security software on computers seems rather far-fetched, it is probably […]

Rant: why digital levies won’t work

Last week the Dutch artist’s union and the the Dutch consumer association jointly proposed a levy for digital media and internet connectivity. The flipside of this deal would be that downloading stays legal in the Netherlands (as it currently is). And no three-strikes-and-you’re-out legislation either. Hurray! Obviously, the electronics industry is vehemently against it. And […]

Rant: the elusive open source/free software desktop

Every once in a while there is this happy, chirpy announcement of an organisation (usually a public body) that it will start a project to replace its current closed desktop with an open source one.  And while I hate Windows XP (any edition, and let it be known there is nothing ‘professional’ about Windows XP […]

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