Ed Cone reports on a citizen journalist with a weblog in Baghdad.
I must admit HBO got me again, I'm totally enjoying their new Sunday night drama, Deadwood. You'll probably see comments here from time to time about the show. Last night's episode had two points of view that I totally identified with. First, with Wild Bill Hickock, who is taunted by a troll at a poker game, and then ranted at by zealot while working on a store-raising for a friend. He was the Wild West's equivalent of an A-List blogger. How demoralizing it must be for WBH to achieve so much fame, only to have people hate him for it. Then I felt for the central character, Swearengen, the murderous saloon man who is betrayed, and now has to deal with competition. In a stirring soliloquy, he says that he was there when there was no town, it was his back-breaking work that raised it into existence, and what thanks does he get? I know how he feels.
Jon Udell notes that Radio, while nominally a desktop product, also works as a server app. That's the advantage of using HTTP and HTML to form the user interface of the desktop app, you can easily separate the user from the app, as the old Starship Enterprise could decouple. It was exactly this configuration that I used for the short-lived Channel Dean project.
BBC: "Internet search engine Google's plans for a free email service have come under fire from privacy campaigners."
Dan Gillmor: "Ask yourself if bloggers could have pulled off the kind of journalism that turned into some of these winning entries." Yes they could, of course. A proof. Could one of the authors of one of the award-winning articles have a weblog? Hard to imagine why one couldn't. If so, then a blogger could pull off that kind of journalism. If you want to find a distinction, a diff betw pros and amateurs, you'll have to dig deeper. And maybe you won't find the distinction. And wouldn't it be cool if a Pulitzer prize winner found a source or two by reading their blogs?
Rogers notes that Lessig's book does not use the Founders' Copyright.
Report on Richard Clarke's book, which I've now read. Most Americans probably believe that Iraq was responsible for 9-11. If they found out the truth, they might wonder, as Clarke does, why we're fighting a war there. According to Clarke it's a very bad move. It weakens western-friendly countries in the region. Iraq was a poor choice for combatting terror, Iran, Syria and Saudia Arabia are much more involved. We only have token forces in Afghanistan and haven't wiped out the leadership of the Taliban or Al Qaeda. Never mind that Iraq is a morass. The focus of the press and the Bush spinners has been on placing blame for 9-11 on Bush. The book isn't really about that, it's about the direction we're going now.
The other major question Clarke raises is a creative one. What if someone else had been President on 9-11, and decided to use the new support for the US in a positive way, not just to wipe out Al Qaeda which he surely had global support for, but also to do something to improve something about the world. He doesn't answer the question, but it's still an interesting one. What if Truman had been President? Eisenhower, Kennedy, Johnson, Nixon, Carter, Reagan, Bush I, Clinton. It's hard to imagine any of them rushing to war with a random opponent, without international support, without a defined goal, assuming quick victory.
A new form to sign up for dinner at the famous Durgin Park restaurant on Friday April 16 at 7PM, the night before the conference.
A new form you can use if you've registered for BloggerCon on April 17, but will not be able to attend.
Rebecca MacKinnon leads a discussion about blogging outside the US.
Rafe Colburn: "I can't wait until the day when I have enough money in the bank to quit a job in disgust."
Jim Moore brings talks about bringing the Third World into the Second Superpower.
I gave a talk at an anthropology class a couple of weeks ago. At one point, I was talking about the creativity we all have but don't use in a monoculture like the one we live in. It only matters if you are the best, but it wasn't always that way. Before movies, records, radio and television, every town had a best singer, live performances were how people got music, so creativity was much more decentralized, there was more of it. I told a story of a conference I was at last year, and at my lunch table was a young man who said he is Jack Benny's grandson. He said he had no talent. How could Jack Benny's grandson possibly have no talent! Then I looked at the faces of the students in the Harvard classroom. You guys don't know who Jack Benny was, do you? Arrrgh. They didn't.
Wired: "Dubious patents have led the software industry to declare that the US patent system is broken and needs to be repaired."
Wired: "If we don't do something about increasing battery life, we're toast."
4/5/03: "We were blindsided when the Times archive went behind a for-pay firewall earlier this week."
Three years ago today: "I don't want to invalidate anyone's feeling of disempowerment, but there's a router error if you think I'm the Dept of Complaints for the NYC subway system."
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