Denial of Democracy Attacks

[As ever you can read this on the BBC News website]

In common with other administrations the UK Government is concerned about the security of the realm and its ability to cope with natural disasters, foreign aggression and terrorism.

Over the years the importance of computer systems, networks and of course the internet have become apparent even at the highest level of the administration, so it is unsurprising that the National Security Strategy announced by the Prime Minister last week contains a number of references to the network and to the growing fear of what they call ‘cyber-attack’.

The strategy notes that ‘the internet is itself a trans-national, fast-changing and loosely-governed entity, but is also part of our critical national infrastructure’ before stating the obvious by pointing out that ‘it is both a target and an opportunity for hostile states, terrorists and criminals’. (p21)

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Just like EastEnders

Watching ‘The Passion’ on BBC iPlayer I was rather intrigued by the programmes suggested by the ‘More Like This’ feature… ‘The Worst Journey in the World’ makes some bizarre sense – but EastEnders?

Odd suggestions for things to watch...

The Offline Cost of an Online Life

[As ever, you can read this on the BBC News website]

The next time you want to search for something on the web, try going to ‘’ instead of your usual search engine.

The page you get looks remarkably like Google, and queries you type in are fed through to Google, but there’s  one obvious difference. Instead of the generous amount of white space which has characterised Google’s home page since its 1998 launch, the page is mostly black.

Heap Media, the Australian company behind Blackle, claim that  black pixels take less power than white and so using their search saves energy. They believe that small things matter when it comes to reducing our energy use, limiting our C02 output and reducing the likely extent of global warming as a result of human activity.

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@bbccouk Finished my column and going to make coffee…

[As ever you can read this on the BBC News website]

Unlike many of my friends and colleagues I wasn’t able to make it to Austin, Texas for this year’s  SXSW interactive, the four day technology conference and festival that is currently firing the imagination of the technology world.

So I wasn’t in the ballroom when the keynote address by Facebook founder Mark Zuckerberg went awry under the less-than-forensic questioning of technology journalist Sarah Lacy.

I didn’t see the crowd start to get restless and heckle Zuckerberg about the deeply-unpopular Beacon advertising system, or get a chance to grab the microphone and ask questions when Lacy threw the conversation open to the floor.

And yet I was there in another way, listening to and even interacting with some of my friends in the audience, picking up on the vibe in the room and even tuning in later as Sarah Lacy loudly defended herself.

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