Getting This Way Up…

One of the best things about working for the World Service is that you get to meet interesting and cool people from all over the world – as you might expect.

One of the nicest is Simon Morton, who was over from New Zealand and worked as a producer on Digital Planet – he was up for anything, and we even got him to have an RFID chip inserted in his arm for a piece (though we covered his bar bill for the club in Barcelona that did it to him).

He’s now back in NZ, where he presents a weekly show called This Way Up, a two-hour programme which explores the stories and issues around things we use and consume, including technology.

I’ve done bits and pieces for them before, but now we’ve started a semi-regular slot where Simon and I chat about the big tech stories of the moment – starting this weekend with a conversation that covers’s rebirth, the damage to Microsoft’s reputation done by the failure of the Windows Genuine Advantage servers and the failure of the Australian government to offer a working porn filter to its citizenry. I suspect the last one was particularly entertaining for the New Zealand audience…

Unlocking the iPhone: a fool’s errand

The many and various efforts made to unlock the iPhone, documented around the Web – here at the BBC, over there at Ed Felten’s blog, seem to miss a crucial point. Whether or not George Hotz,  iphonesimfree  and UniquePhones manage to achieve their goal, or even  to commercialise the service in the face of  nastygrams from AT&T, there is no real point to the exercise other than a demonstration – yet again – that software locks are always breakable.

Continue reading “Unlocking the iPhone: a fool’s errand”

I saw this…

Here’s what I’ve tagged on on August 26th:

Watching me, watching you…

[As ever, this is also on the BBC News website for your delectation and delight]

In the late 1970’s the United States was still recovering from Watergate, the scandal that forced President Richard Nixon to resign after revelations of a dirty-tricks campaign against his political rivals which involved illegal surveillance.

Partly in response to the crisis Congress passed the Foreign Intelligence Surveillance Act (FISA) in 1978, limiting the president’s freedom to monitor US citizens without a warrant while providing a fair degree of freedom to bug foreigners or the agents of foreign powers when they were on US soil.

Continue reading “Watching me, watching you…”

My bookmarks for August 20th through August 22nd

Here’s what I tagged on between August 20th and August 22nd:

Show and tell

[As ever, this is also on the BBC News website]

When the United Nations website was defaced by a group of activists who replaced a statement from the Secretary General with the slogan “Hey Ysrail and Usa dont kill children and other people Peace for ever No war” it was hard for the organisation to keep it secret.

The hack was clearly visible to everyone who visited the site, and although it was quickly removed the story rapidly spread and screenshots have been widely circulated.

Continue reading “Show and tell”

I saw this…

Here’s what I’ve tagged on on August 19th:

My bookmarks for August 16th through August 17th

Here’s what I tagged on between August 16th and August 17th:

  • iMovie ‘08 – John reports on David Pogue’s ‘searing review’… with the criticism of iPhoto too, I’m just glad I restrained myself when I was in the Applestore earlier in the week. I’ll stick with what works.
  • Talk:Pete Clifton – Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia – Here we see the problem. Pete is editor of one of the most important websites in the world, and yet someone can write “I know it has gone through a proposal for deletion before but, let’s face it, who is he? Is he notable enough for an entry? I think not”