Month: February 2010

I have a Chocolate Fridge

The German supermarket chain Aldi recently had a special deal of a “wine-fridge” for $99. A wine fridge really isn’t that specialised for wine, it is merely a fridge that has a heater and is designed for temperatures in the 11C to 18C range. An good wine fridge will have special wood (or plastic if […]


Terms of Abuse for Minority Groups

Due to the comments on my blog post about Divisive Behavior [1] I’ve been considering the issue of terms of abuse of minority groups – a topic of which racial abuse is only one aspect. It seems that there are many discussions about which terms are offensive and when they are offensive, most of which […]


Divisive Behavior

Past Sins Sam Varghese wrote an article about Matthew Garrett’s LCA talk “The Linux community: what is it and how to be a part of it” [1]. In page 2 Sam quotes Martin Krafft as asking about how Matthew’s behavior had changed between 2004 and the present, Sam cites some references for Matthew’s actions in […]


Net Neutrality

Martin Krafft advocates a model of Internet access where advertisers pay for the Internet connection [1]. The first problem with this idea is the base cost of providing net access – which in most cases is wires to the premises. Every service that involves a cable to someone’s house (Cable TV, Cable/DSL net access, or […]


Can the NBN Ever Break Even?

I previously wrote about how the National Broadband Network (NBN) seems more suited to porn delivery than regular Internet use [1]. It doesn’t seem to be of much use really. In a particularly insightful comment John Hughes suggested that the real purpose would be TV delivery. The ABC is currently delivering 640*360 resolution MPEG4 files […]


Would you Short-Change a Pedophile?

For some time the film industry has been running an anti-piracy campaign with slogans such as “you wouldn’t steal a car” [1] in an attempt to draw a false analogy between downloading a movie and stealing a significant and valuable object – the modern equivalent to being a “horse thief“. One of the many ways […]


National Broadband/Porn Network

Currently we have a new “National Broadband Network” under construction in Australia [1]. It is going to cost $43,000,000,000 which is $5,000 per household. It is designed to deliver 100Mb/s speeds to most homes – that is the homes that can currently get more than 8Mb/s through ADSL2+ or cable connections. The question is, what […]


Links February 2010

Popular Mechanics has a good article about 911 [1]. Experts in all the relevant fields were consulted to debunk popular myths. It’s an old article but I hadn’t read it before and learned a lot. Former CIA analyst Raw McGovern and former FBI attorney/special agent Coleen Rowley, a colleague in Veteran Intelligence Professionals for Sanity […]


Will Aliens be Alien?

The Telegraph has a silly article titled “Aliens are likely to look and behave like us” [1]. It’s based on the ideas of Professor Simon Conway Morris [2] who is a big fan of evolutionary convergence. He seems to believe that humans evolved in a way that is close to optimal and that aliens would […]


I Just Bought a new Thinkpad and the Lenovo Web Site Sucks

I’ve just bought a Thinkpad T61 at auction for $AU796. My Thinkpad T41p has cooling problems which I have previously described[1]. It’s also started to rattle a bit when I hold it upside down since I took it apart so I guess I didn’t do a great job at trying to fix it (probably the […]

Misc Computer