Archive - Dec 30, 2005


Misc Lately

I don't have the energy lately to post an entry for every little thing I want to mention here. I'm just going to write a little list of unrelated recent things:

  • I heard/watched a great speech available on Freespeech TV by Tim Wise about white privilege. He's a really great speaker in addition to having some very important things to say. Recommended. I thank Onto for linking to it in his great blog post about the racial aspects of the NYC transit strike.
  • I've been spending a lot of time working on the indymedia computer lab and the sound system at the Dry River space. We've received a couple loads of computers and peripherals that were mostly crap, so, sort of like a mini-freegeek, I've been going through and evaluating what works and is useful and what does not and is not. Literally 1 machine out of 6 was useable to us out of the last lot. It's incredible to me how people will "donate" stuff they know is total junk. For instance we actually received a 486 with the old pre-ps2 keyboard jack, and no hard drive. wow, thanx a lot. reminds me of the super8 film camera sent down to the Chiapas Media Project in "solidarity." c'mon, people - charitable media organization does not mean "dumpster." Although I guess it is better than just throwing it in the dumpster, since we're going to dispose of the crap properly.. We plan to take it to a sort of Freegeek-like place called Desert Waste Not Warehouse.
  • Anyway, I've been installing Blag linux on the machines that are useful to us and I'm pretty impressed with it so far. The installer and configuration tools are really slick. I especially like the "automagick install" feature where you can just hit a key and it does a standard install without asking any questions. I'd prefer that it were based on debian rather than fedora, but it looks like it will be just as easy to keep updated. And it's nice to use an OS created by an anarchist collective.
  • I'm loving watching this stupid NSA cookie thing unfold. Let's see how far the hysteria grows. I so hate it when the press perpetuates ignorance and fear about how everyday technology works, and even politicians believe the scare stories. When will someone in the corporate media make it clear that everyone from Barnes and Noble to your niece's blog to your bank uses cookies on their websites, and that it's a basic enabling technology for the web? And that just handing out cookies doesn't fricking mean that your computer is being scanned for information. It doesn't even mean that they can tell what other websites someone has been to. No. Cookie technology is really pretty well-designed for privacy. If I have a site, I can use them to track when you've previously been to my own site, and to store information that you GAVE to me willingly before. But that's about it. I never go to the NSA website or the White house site, and if I did, why should I care if they know I've been there before? Now if the NSA was planting viruses on my computer, then I'd be afraid.
  • We're having a Zapatista anniversary party/fundraiser at Dry River on New Years day. I've been trying to figure out what the official channel is for getting money to the Zapatistas, and it's proving difficult to find information about that on the web. Very weird. Although I have discovered that the EZLN now has a really pretty website. anybody know how to donate to them these days?
  • My grandmother, suffering from steadily progressing Alzheimer's for the last few years, finally left this world last night. So I'll probably be flying to Kalamazoo, Michigan, of all places, next week.

that's it for now. have a good new year's eve.