Sun is going …

Sun is going to start offering a commercial version of StarOffice, but will continue to offer OpenOffice as a free download.

Scary. I guess the only thing to do in this instance is to insist that you have your ID checked by hand or to patronize a different bar. The increase in “national security” and the crazy places (my doctor’s office, for instance) that you have to have your ID checked just to get into a building is getting out of hand. It almost makes me want to acquire a fake ID to use just so I’m not spammed and marketed to death by companies who abuse this private information. For a historical perspective, read “Databanks in a Free Society: Computers, Record Keeping and Privacy” by Alan F. Westin.

Ordinal Spam: Do you need help becoming a priest? Do you want to start your own church? Oh my…

Knight-Ridder’s RealCities hub is a good idea, but I’m doubting they will succeed. The transition from the old individual newspaper sites to RealCities has been rough. Someone did not plan this very well, obviously.

Jason Fried of Spinfree (and 37Signals) has released Singlefile, a Web service that allows you to keep track of your book collection. Jason is one of the best user interface designers I know. In a year or two when I start my own company, I’m going to recruit Jason (and a few other people I admire). I’ve been discussing this Singlefile idea with Jason for about three years ever since we got in touch with each other after I asked him about creating a Web front-end to his Filemaker run-time application called BookBin which does the same thing. I also floated this idea when I was working at but the management [typically] ignored me. Back in 1999 I was playing around with the idea of developing a startup around this concept and got so far as developing some preliminary HTML mockups. I stopped development on the idea and Jason forged ahead. Singlefile is the end result. Awesome.

Interesting. The Church of Scientology is using the DCMA to get Google to remove links to sites that allegedly infringe upon their intellectual property.

If you don’t think the Church of Scientology isn’t a whacked-out cult, check out this paragraph from the story linked above. Yeah, these people are sane. I’ll bet their spaceship is hiding behind a comet, too, waiting to transport them to the next plane of existance.

Hubbard’s secret scriptures teach that 75 million years ago, an evil galactic overlord named Xenu solved the galaxy’s overpopulation problem by freezing excess people and transporting the bodies to Teegeeack, now called Earth. After the hapless travelers were defrosted, they were chained to volcanoes that were blown up by hydrogen bombs — and their disembodied spirits continue to haunt mankind today.

Meg Hourihan has a nice piece about Attendee-Centered Conference Design up at O’ReillyNet. She nails it ona c ouple of issues, mostly about how poorly organized and thouth out some conferences can be. Attendees don’t want to spend a lot of money only to go to a crappy conference with lousy speakers and no group dynamics/interaction. It gives a new meaning to peer-to-peer interaction.

Pretty frequently I get unsolicted AOL IM requests from teenagers (and adults?) scouting for people to hook up with. Sometimes I like to mess with their heads. A reader sent along this link to Amber Forever, some guys chat logs of pretending to be a 14-year old girl named Amber and stringing people along on chat to see how far he can get them to go. Ha ha. (Warning, a bit crude and sexual.)

Posted by Cameron Barrett at March 21, 2002 06:19 PM

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