Saturday, August 12, 2006
Sunday, July 23, 2006
After much consideration, I've narrowed down possible choices for the domain name of the new site to the following:
lambdasaurus.com -or- lambdasaur.us (It would be accompanied by a spruced up version of this graphic:
tante-emmas-ecke.com (which, granted, not everyone would get but just the right people would)
dotcompositionality.com (which has an awkwardness similar to slashdot)
salva-veritate.com as in Salva veritate
or, to make the transition easier for everyone here,
Vote now or add another candidate! (Though initially I thought about all the variations on 'semantics' that would make for a good domain name, I eventually decided against it because I'd like the site to cover semantics, programming, and other topics.) The final decision will be made more on which name has the better argument(s) for it than popular vote, so be sure to explain your choice(s) :-) Enough of this silliness and back to work!
Saturday, July 22, 2006
Thursday, July 06, 2006
In less than 24 hours, I'll be boarding a flight to Providence, where I'll be staying for the rest of the summer so I can get a good feel for the place and also get a head start on working (which I'm really excited about since, if you read this blog with any regularity you'd notice, I have been sort of like a tumbleweed blowing about the semantics landscape so far). I'm excited with a fair supplement of my usual travel anxiety (more that usual, actually, since I get nervous about flights to Phoenix, AZ when I'm just going for the weekend...and this is certainly a much more intense trip than that). Anyways, there's that! Hope everyone is doing well. Look forward to my next post...from Providence! :-)
Monday, July 03, 2006
Policymakers need to learn about technology before they make policy regulating technology
I think what's most startling about this is just how wrong Stevens' ideas are about how the internet both functions and is used. Stevens seems to think that a staggering majority of the average user uses the internet solely as a means of communication in its most primitive form: e-mail and chat. It is not enough to say that he is wrong and that many users (and many more with each new batch of kids getting exposed at an early age) do use the internet for more than e-mail and chat. The point that Stevens actually misses is that there is much more that the internet can offer as far as communication services go. The internet is turning the act of communicating into something more than a two-person back-and-forth dialogue. Knowledge and creativity are now capable to take any shape beyond the restrictions of text when being passed from creator to audience. This isn't just businessmen and family members communicating, as Stevens claims, this is humanity communicating with itself! The senator uses the example of the amount of bandwidth hogged by users downloading movies; even if this is the case, shouldn't the solution be to foster research in making the internet faster so that more people can enjoy this luxury at a lower cost? It just so happens that the senator's example does not represent the full potential of use of the internet and net neutrality. The big corporations that are using the internet as a distribution method for their commercial goods (which, by the way, is not really being done by anyone except Apple's iTunes Music Store anyways) will still use the internet to do that in the absence of net neutrality and in the presence of a multi-tiered system. Warner Bros. et al will certainly be able to fork over the appropriate amount of money to make their site as fast as need be to allow users to download movies fast. YouTube, on the other hand, will surely languish. But moving beyond just video, what about other media that's shared across the internet? What about programmers trying to share code or documentation about certain software that they've written? Most of these projects won't have enough money to get their site operating at the same speed as Disney or Google. Scholars in academia won't be able to properly fund a fair connection speed for their archives or personal webpages (i.e. forget about semanticsarchive). Effectively, the absence of net neutrality provisions is equivalent to the creation of the carpool lane that single-passenger cars can pay to get into.
Listening to the Net Neutrality debates, it becomes very clear very quickly who's thought about the issue carefully and who hasn't; who is open to learning more before making such a rash and important decision and who just doesn't care. And then there's Senator Stevens, who seems to be under the impression that one can send an internet, which is made up of tubes.
Now we have a separate Department of Defense internet now, did you know that?
Do you know why?
No Senator, do you?
Friday, June 30, 2006
Thursday, June 29, 2006
Find out who killed the electric car and why
It's too bad that I wasn't the only one convinced by the naysayers because it appears that in reality, electric vehicles were great, fast, clean; the only thing possibly offensive about the electric car would be that it was a car (vs. mass public transit). But when GM and other automakers were let off the hook by CARB in 2003 and were no longer required to comply with a zero-emissions mandate, they pulled the plug on their entire line...and demande all of their cars back. It turns out that no one ever owned an electric vehicle; the cars were leased (very exclusively, too) and when the time came, none of the leasees were granted the opportunity to extend their leases or purchase the vehicle.
In a time when the nation is embroiled in tensions with the Middle East, at war (though no one will ever admit it, except maybe Rupert Murdoch) with Iraq for cheaper oil, and facing possible environmental doom à la global warming/ever-increasing carbon emissions...shouldn't we be embracing technology that would significantly start a trend to less dependency on oil? And shouldn't the ghost of the electric car be an active reminder of what is possible? Instead, people are trying to sweep the electric car under the rug:
Chelsea Sexton, who loved the EV-1 so much that she became a sales specialist for GM, is seen next to the car, reiterating how great they are and that Peterson is one of few places where the public can see them. Seems innocent enough. But Paine just received word “that I will never be invited to the Peterson Automotive Museum again.” He then mentioned that the Smithsonian recently removed its own EV display—and replaced it with a robotic Hummer SUV. Both museums rely on contributions from corporations like GM. (From the OC Weekly.)
Don't let the EV disappear into obscurity. Go see "Who Killed the Electric Car?" this weekend if you're near LA (at the NuWilshire, 14th & Wilshire Blvd. in Santa Monica), NY or Orange County (not sure of where else the movie is opening and/or when). And if you really want the "fair and balanced" perspective on the issue, check out GM's response to the film.
And if you're not able to see the film this weekend, then take a look at these groups working to force automakers to build lower-emissions cars: