Time Heals All Wounds.. And Then Kills the Patient
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Wed Nov 19 23:36:28 2003
Cultural Gymnastics

In Search of Fading Light People can touch infinity for a moment, And spend a lifetime trying to get it back.. Is it worse, though, to give up the pursuit, and lose sight of it entirely?

How can eternity look so different from young eyes? How could it change so much? It is because we do not hold it in ourselves, that our eyes move along different paths.

A sunset changes the eyes little, replenishing the heart, like a cup of cold water. Nearly ten thousand sunsets have I seen, and grows in me a hunger.

It looks like Linuxant has some competition. When need is great enough, the open source community provides for itself.. Linuxant, if you recall, wrote wrappers allowing Linux users to use Windows drivers for their wireless network cards, and sells said wrappers for $20. I happily purchased a license -- my laptop's built-in wireless card gets better reception then the PCMCIA card I had (which I've since mailed off to a friend who has a use for it), and that card was suffering from being stuffed into my computer bag repetatively.. Do I regret spending the money? No -- the Linuxant people didn't overcharge, they were supporting the community, and they were trying to get funding from the hardware vendors so they could provide their work gratis. Might I switch? Maybe. Economically, it won't make a bit of difference -- Linuxant already has my $20, and for the convenience I've had since switching, they've more than earned it. On the other hand, the linuxant driver does have some funny license-key stuff that makes it work, so to avoid that, if/when the open driver becomes mature, I'll likely switch.

Looks like McBride is feeling the effects of his attempts to steal the livelihood of the open source movement. Interesting that Ransom Love, the previous poobah of what now passes for SCO, disowns the company. Still, it's not enough, and it's right that McBride feel great friction for what he's doing. And McBride has greater aspirations -- he wants to go after BSD too. Information shall be free. All of it. In the end, proprietary information won't be owned, but Linux and BSD, these are the things that we've made, playing by the unacceptable rules of IP. Like the spammers, we'll make life uncomfortable for you, Mr McBride. Protesters will hound you to the end of your days.. "that is the man who tried to imprison the penguin and the daemon". Here's an economist attempting to rephrase opensource in economic terms. It's just enough of an analogy to be honey to the mind.

Looks like the Dutch police may soon be frustrated by cryptophones. As always, this is a trade-off -- it will indeed, as mentioned, make it harder for dutch police to tap phones, and apparently they feel strong needs to do so, tapping phones more than anywhere else in the world (?). It's interesting how their phones being opensource makes it harder for governments to use shady deals with manufacturers to insert backdoors. Freedom is a double-edged sword, but I'll argue that in cases of censorship, we should, outside of a few narrowly defined cases, always accept the downsides as necessary for a good society.

In the news: New Species of Whale Discovered, Republicans everywhere rejoice at a new creature to hunt to extinction!

Like quarrelling lovers, Taiwan strikes back against China, saying that it's interfering in internal affairs. Of course they'd say that, and of course the Chinese government would say that they're rebelling. Steeped in the right terminology, arguments become much stronger.. which is a perfect segue into an Israeli analysis of one-state solutions to the Israeli-Palestinian conflict. The opposition calls it a seductive idea, and some of the analysis suggests that it's a way for the Palestinians to ignore the steps the Israelis have taken to make any Palestinian state very small and marginalized. While I feel these things would be a good thing, as I do see the current moves to be a not-so-subtle power grab that will then later be undoable because of the status quo that's being built, it has led me to reexamine a phrase that's been put to me several times by several people. "Do you support the right for Israel to exist?". I've come to the conclusion that this question is as tricky as defining women's liberation, and all the things it could mean are almost as diverse (hence the segue from language issues). I used to give a qualified yes, now I can't even say that (or no, for that matter). I think there should be a state there, and what it's called is uninteresting to me. Should it be a Hebrew state? One thing is clear -- it cannot be reserved for Hebrews, nor can it have racist policies that favour them. Ethnic protections are unacceptable. I don't want to deport anyone (although land reperations of some kind should be addressed, and the settlers should be scooted back into Israel proper, or perhaps into prison for theft). So, in one sense, I'm anti-Israel, in the sense that Israel is defined as a ethnically pure Hebrew state with racist laws. In another sense, I'm pro-Israel, in the sense that Israel is defined as a single state covering the traditional land of Israel, with many of the institutions already there remaining. I'm certainly no longer pro-Palestine..

As predicted, Schwarzenegger's car stupidity is already hitting the budgets of cities in California. Oh, and here's star treatment for you -- Michael Jackson, in his sex scandals, is negotiating his surrender to police. How nice. I kind of wish the rest of us had that luxury. "Oh, sure, you can arrest me ... but maybe next friday? I'm busy until then.."

Looks like Microsoft has Google News envy. While on the topic, looks like South Korea is planning to one up the networking experiment over here, providing nationwide internet access. This is very cool, and might prove to be one of the best nonbasic infrastructure investment possible. Any nation willing to make internet a public utility, laying it out all over is really looking to the future with open eyes.

I recently stumbled upon this news site. I might become a regular visitor.. hmm..

On the topic of Gay Marrage, which has been in the news a lot recently over here, I have this to say to gay people in long term relationships: Gay marrage is a cultural battle, and while the laws are an important metric, it's important to press on ahead of them. Call yourself married, even if the laws don't recognize it, and you'll have 60% of what you're aiming for

I have something I was going to write, but it'd hit a bit too close to home on some people I know, so I'm going to just abstract it in private here. Sorry.


I'm still chewing on picking up another language... and might go looking for tutors for Hebrew, Arabic, Yiddish, or Russian.. I was looking at taking classes outside of the university, but my schedule is too fluid for that. It probably won't be too hard to find someone -- this area is crawling with people who speak those langages.. although the particular flavours I'd be interested in might not be so common. I'd like to learn Yemeni Hebrew, or failing that, Ashkenazi. As for Arabic, the Saudi dialect might be interesting, although 'standard Arabic' might be good too. As far as I know, Yiddish doesn't have dialects, and I'm just interested in standard Russian. Heck, Gælic might be fun too. I recently found out that Scottish Gælic isn't the same thing as the Scots language -- Scots is a germanic tongue that was spoken in southern Scotland that was mostly wiped out/assimilated into English, while Scottish Gælic is, obviously, a member of the Gælic family of languages.

I know I must've linked it a dozen times before, but the song from this is irritatingly catchy...

Firewater is kind of my 'new goth', Bad Religion is my 'new punk'. I ordered the Firewater cover CD, but what I'd really like to see is Bad Religion sing some Firewater songs, and vice versa.. it'd be really interesting.