Tuesday, September 24, 2002
As I noted yesterday, I'll be at the Illinois Library Association conference all day on Wednesday, although I erroneously noted Lori as the moderator of my panel when it's really Teri (sorry, Teri). Our presentation runs 9:00 -10:30 a.m. in room 207 down on Navy Pier. Even if you don't stay for our talk, stop by and say hi!
Librarians have not yet caught on to the whole wireless-blogging-at-conferences thing, so I'll be offline all day. Ergo, no postings. On the positive side, I won't be frustrated by the continued lapses in internet service at home.
Sherman, Set the Wayback Machine for Scientology
"The problem is not that the Internet Archive received such a request from the Church of Scientology's lawyers, or even complied with the legal portions of the request, but that the Internet Archive has not taken minimal steps to defend free inquiry and access to information. LawMeme reveals the sordid details...
The Internet Archive says it well itself:
Open and free access to literature and other writings has long been considered essential to education and to the maintenance of an open society. Public and philanthropic enterprises have supported it through the ages.
Let's hope the Internet Archive will try harder to live up to its own ideals in the face of bullys like Scientology." [LawMeme]
As Ernest noted to me, this has implications for librarians as well. Much has been made in our professional journals about the potential holes in aggregate databases thanks to the recent Tasini ruling. This (and the attempt to force Google to censor the anti-Scientology site) make the same types of holes in the only major online archive widely available today. This is never a good thing.
Smart Alarm Clock Lets You Lie In
"A smart alarm clock that will allow you a lie-in or wake you up early depending on traffic conditions has been invented by researchers at Brunel University in southern England.
The Rise alarm clock has in-built internet access and can be connected to the web via a normal telephone line.
The clock retrieves relevant traffic information from across the web based on data the users have given it, such as where they live, where they need to travel to and what time they need to arrive.
The alarm clock will then work out what time you need to be woken....
In tests he was impressed with the clock's accuracy.
'I was so punctual it was scary,' he said." [BBC Technology, via Lockergnome's Bits and Bytes]
Now we're talking useful technology! Of course, this doesn't take into account my morning routine of reading my news aggregator, so I might have to wait until they build a smart clock that can evaluate new news posted overnight and how interesting it will be to me. ;-)
The Opposing Copyright Extension Site
"Runner writes 'The Opposing Copyright Extension Site, Maintained by, Dennis S. Karjala, Professor of Law, Arizona State University, is a great place to keep up on the world of Copyright Extension, the 'Sonny Bono Copyright Term Extension Act,' and such legal matters.
Check it out!' " [LISNews.com]
Classrooms of the Future
"Verner Vinge's Fast Times at Fairmont High just won the Hugo for best novella. The story is set in the 2020s in a world where wireless technology, pervasive computation, augmented reality and wearables make future classrooms and their ethics a lot more complicated for both students and teachers." [Smart Mobs]
Use Your Computer's Idle Down Time to Grow Plants
" 'The Bank of Time' is a free screensaver which saves your idle time and visualises it by growing plants. Users can visit the Idle Growth Tables on the web site where their idle time is displayed and compare its growth to that of other users from all over the world. As more people save with The Bank of Time they will soon be able to learn whose computers have been the most idle and which organisations have been slacking. It will create an economy of lost time." [Smart Mobs]
Pamela will enjoy this one!
Here's an interesting point made by Anthony Townsend and based on a quote from Howard Rheingold that illustrates our current culture of information shifting.
"There is some really interesting work being done. Howard Rheingold--who's known for his earlier work on virtual communities--referred to what's called 'swarming behavior.' This is the idea that mobile technologies are creating much more mobile, dynamic communities that more closely resemble swarms than the way we've done things before.
He doesn't do this, but if you extend it to what'll happen in cities, it means that you are going to need different kinds of spaces to accommodate people who are moving and communicating and using space differently. Waiting rooms become something of an anachronism because no one really waits anymore." [Smart Mobs]
Same thing with libraries. Sometimes people are too busy or are otherwise preoccupied and can't come in to physically pick up their information. Your assignment is to figure out how to get it to them where they are, when they are.
"October 5 weblog panel in Chicago
. All About Weblogs
announces an upcoming program on October 5, at 2 pm, at the Sulzer
Branch of the Chicago Public Library at 4455 N. Lincoln Ave.:
I'll explain what a weblog is, what types and genres of weblogs exsist, taking the audience on a short tour to a few of my favorites. I'll explain some simple ways to find blogs that you might be interested in, and ways to track them. I'll also briefly cover how to start you own, and offer some tips for running one. ... [W]e will have a panel of some smart local webloggers who will discuss what blogging has done for us, what it's done for the Web, and what it can do offline. These and deeper questions will be discussed by a panel which will include AKMA, from AKMA's Random Thoughts, Dan Hartung of Lake Effect, Jim McGee of McGee's Musings. They'll be few more as well.... [T]his promises to be the largest gathering of Chicago bloggers ever assembled.
Sounds fun. I'm sure many will blog it for the rest of us, right? All About Weblogs is a new blog by kiplog. I'd have used a permalink above, but currently it gets an error, implying that perhaps the archives have never been published." [Radio Free Blogistan]
I'm going to try to attend, but it will depend on scheduling. It sounds de-lovely!
The King is Back
"Oh Boy! Oh Boy! Stephen King, one of the reasons why I became a librarian (long story, needing to be told over a cup of decaf), has released yet another book, entitled 'From a Buick 8'. I'll make sure to reserve that one at my library this week...." [Library Stuff]
Shhhhh... don't tell Steven that the cover story on this week's Entertainment Weekly is titled "Stephen King Calls It Quits: America's Most Popular Author Tells Us Why He's Written His Last Book."
Sorry, but it's not available online. Feel free to request a copy of the article from you local public library.
Sorry, Steven. :-
A Direct Boost for Nextel
"Despite Nextel's dominant role in the much-coveted business market, the carrier surprised industry analysts earlier this month when it began catering to the less-established youth market.
In what one analyst called "a whole new direction for Nextel," the company partnered with Boost Mobile of Australia and New Zealand and began to offer mobile phone services to teenagers. Boost, which is constantly sponsoring surfing and skateboarding events and whose identity revolves around extreme sports, is hugely popular among teens in both countries, said Seamus McAteer, an analyst with Zelos Group.
For its initial launch in California and Nevada, Nextel is selling mobile phones under the Boost name in 7-Eleven, Best Buy and Nextel retail stores. The majority of the phones have Java software for games, hands-free speakerphones, a 250-entry address book, voice mail, two-way text messaging and a two-way walkie-talkie service....
And unlike its competition, Nextel has a chance at teens with Direct Connect, which could help them, say, create last-minute plans with friends, Kelly said." [Wired News]
In the interim, before American cellular carriers wise up with pricing and we start seeing more "fun" phones, Nextel might make some headway with this. Adolescents already love FRS two-way radios, so providing a broader range for a walkie-talkie service might be just the ticket here. If they launch with some high quality games, this move could be the foot in the door Nextel needs.