_ _ _____ _ __ <*the* weekly high-tech sarcastic update for the uk>
| \ | |_ _| |/ / _ __ __2000-02-04_ o join! mail an empty message to
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|_| \_| |_| |_|\_\|_| |_|\___/ \_/\_/ o http://www.ntk.net/ "I asked them why, and they said that they considered it to be
so advanced that they had to take it in, because it was a
Nokia 9110. And I did have, in fact, a backup of the source
- JON JOHANSEN, the DeCSS 1, on why the police took his mobile phone
...yeah, wait till they see us play pirate DVDs on our *chipped phones*
>> HARD NEWS <<
the rules are Boole's
Cease and DeCSS! Yesterday, Judge Kaplan published his
official decision explaining exactly why a bunch of American
sites couldn't link to the DeCSS code - like everyone else
in the Free World. Defence attorneys from the EFF, because
they're constitutional kind of guys, played the First
Amendment card. Unfortunately, said The Man, the First
Amendment, can't be used to permit (from a precedent formed
to prevent strikers from restraining trade by expressing
their grievances) a "grave abuse against an important public
law". Of course, the problem here is that DeCSS is the
important public against a grave, abusive law: the Digital
Millennium Copyright Act. Kaplan was convinced that DeCSS's
purpose was to rip off DVDs (which you can do anyway,
without all that tedious coding nonsense). The DMCA stops
such reverse-engineering - unless there's a "commercially
significant purpose" behind the act. Like its real purpose,
maybe? To allow Linux users watch the films they've bought?
What's copyright for, say the founders? To advance public
welfare, through the "promot[ion] of the Progress of Science
and useful Arts". The useful Arts? That'll be the
commercially significant ones - and apparently free software
*still* isn't commercial enough. And the Progress of
Science? Well, in the Digital Millennium, if science thinks
it's progressing out of the moguls' grasp, it's progressing
straight to jail. Day of action's today.
- don't restrain any trade with those flyers now
- more useful art
- "another step in the evolution of the law of copyright"
- running IIS4. this is a set-up, right?
In the British courts, we have more serious matters to
consider. Like those Dixons-style "Dreamcast for -9.99"
e-commerce snafus: should they stump up the goods, or what?
Perhaps it's time for a test case. Enter JONATHAN SWIFT,
aptly named reader of uk.tech.digital-tv, who spied the
satirical potential in a Tandy Webpage, offering a
terrestrial digibox for just 1p. Tandy have explained that
that the box (RRP 300UKP), isn't much use without a
ONdigital subscription. But they're wrong: you can still get
the free BBC and ITV channels. For a penny. The page is
still up, and Tandy's Netbanx system instantly charges your
credit card, making it in legal terms, a done deal. And if
isn't, we're sure your local Trading Standards would be very
interested to know why not.
- vision of boo.com sales to come
- in case they fix it. or you need evidence in court
- we have witnesses, m'lud!
Who says that the Tory's aren't responsive? We're pleased to
announce that the SMTP spam relay at tory.org pointed up in
last Friday's NTK was fixed by Saturday morning. Sadly, the
Conservatives were a little tardier in stopping one
supporter from subscribing to their free ISP service this
week. Within minutes, he'd taken advantage of their homepage
Webspace offer, and was offering a special "cash for
questions" e-commerce service - hosted, naturally, at
www.tory.org. The page was deleted swiftly, leaving the
volunteer no alternative but to subscribe again, this time
running the appeal on a new page:
http://www.tory.org/home/bollocks/ . Tory.org has now
suspended all new subscriber registrations. Presumably to
stop Jeffrey Archer trying the same trick.
- hey, they should team up with Netbanx!
- Register pals deliver the upper cut
>> ANTI-NEWS <<
berating the obvious
more Y2K hubris: http://www.chaosprotocol.com/news.htm ...
VERIO applies for trademark on the term "whois" ... nine
percent of Germans admit to having kissed their computer,
says MICROSOFT poll ... colleague not available for comment:
http://uk.news.yahoo.com/000203/1/9zquj.html ... Lottery "is
tax on poor for benefit of the rich" uncovers THE TIMES ...
ex-CIA chief used home computer to study secret files, porn
sites ... uprising students fight for dull Aphex Twin video
at britsvoting.com ... ONDIGITAL's new teletext service gets
a flying start with Thomas Cook advertising holidays
departing on "Feb 30" ... a doh so doh-ish, it contains the
word "doh": http://www.cafe.barclaysquare.com/gadget/ ...
pretty much exactly the opposite of what the author
intended: http://www.bbc.co.uk/tickets/radionew.html ...
>> EVENT QUEUE <<
goto's considered non-harmful
Thanks to everyone who wrote in complaining about the plasma
gun "goof" in our recent Transmeta story [NTK 2000-01-21] -
in fact, there actually *is* a plasma gun in Q3A, to be put
to good use, no doubt, at this weekend's BAD LAN RISING
party, from 9am, Sat 2000-02-05, UKP12 per day, the
Highfield Hotel, Middlesborough (the location has moved
around in the past, presumably in accordance with a "no
- also features a TV + N64, for anyone who needs to "relax"
- "also makes some splash damage near the point of impact"
And spring's in the air, when a young man's fancy turns to...
what else but PETER SOMMER'S INFORMATION SECURITY COLLOQUIA
at the LSE in London, which get back into the swing of things
on Tue 2000-02-08 with Robert Ayres discussing the commercial
possibilities of the Computer Emergency Response Team, and
perhaps addressing why CERT advisories have been so lame
- warns of risks in "promiscuous browsing" (ie: "browsing")
- if Hugo Cornwall teamed with Knight Rider's Devon Miles,
they could call themselves "Devon And Cornwall"!
>> TRACKING <<
sufficiently advanced technology : the gathering
There's a fair argument that states that if you don't already
know about NMAP, the remote port-scanner, OS guesser, and
snoopy IP packet miscellanea reporter, you probably
shouldn't be using it. Thankfully, the authors now
recognise that almost any ten year old kid understands
YACC grammars these days, and to that end have added a
cool new "$kR1pt K1dd13z" filter to the output. |<3333wl.
>> MEMEPOOL <<
hasta la altavista
life imitates Onion: http://www.cnn.com/2000/US/01/31/spider.surgery.ap
... write to the Answerman, and he'll make up some answers:
... when the makers of "Taxicab Confessions" find out just
how much people will pay for a lame apartment cam,
somebody's going to have a http://www.crushedplanet.com/ ...
wouldn't it be great if code reviews were like film reviews?
http://www.deja.com/=dnc/getdoc.xp?AN=579432658 ... doesn't
even count her "Falklands bonus"
just how often are these grand alignments, anyway?
this week's scripture quote: "When her scheme is nearly
accomplished, Bibleman naturally foils her and unveils his
weapon to mute the mouthy and menacing Gossip Queen." -
http://www.bibleman.com/... life *really* imitates Onion:
http://news.bbc.co.uk/hi/english/world/asia-pacific/newsid_627000/627012.stm >> GEEK MEDIA <<
get out less
TV>> "Is it Father Dougal in tights?" inquired last week's
Radio Times, perhaps unnecessarily, of lame new Ardal O'Hanlon
superhero spoof MY HERO (8.30pm, Fri, BBC1) - apparently he
has super powers, but - get this! - *doesn't understand normal
human behaviour!* Promisingly, future episodes may indeed
tackle the problems of human/superbeing sexual relationships:
http://www.blueneptune.com/~svw/superman.html ... overrated
black and white yawnathon THE HAUNTING (11.40pm, Sat, BBC2)
(recently remade as "The Haunting" and based on the book "The
Haunting Of Hill House") is showing in some sort of confused
non-tie-in with current movie "The House On Haunted Hill"...
while sources inside Rapido, makers of "Eurotrash" and new
American filth frolic YANKY PANKY (10pm, Sat, Sky 1), reveal
that employees can be disciplined for not having *enough* porn
on their work PCs... in case you hadn't noticed, BBC2 is
showing Will Smith hipcom THE FRESH PRINCE OF BEL AIR (6.20pm,
Mon, BBC2) from the beginning again, complete with interminable
title sequence... Simon Davies is banging on about privacy or
something on COUNTERBLAST (7.30pm, Mon, BBC2)... Philip "The
Saint" Noyce's best film, Nicole Kidman floater DEAD CALM
(9pm, Mon, C5) is Alien - but on a boat!... and a brief cross-
channel Nicolas Cage Wig Out Season begins with white folks'
Driving Miss Daisy chuckle GUARDING TESS (10pm, Mon, C4) and
ends with overlong but carnage-packed Michael Bay shoot-out
THE ROCK (9pm, Tue, C5)...
FILM>> yes, traditionally we should be heaping praise like
"Not just the best kids' film - but one of the best films
*ever*" upon Pixar's high-res CGI follow-up TOY STORY 2
(http://www.capalert.com/capreports/ : theft; fighting; a
video game killing; threat with physical violence; many Barbie
dolls dancing in swimwear while characters ogle at them with
sensuous expressions)- basically the same fricking film as
"Toy Story", but with some of the scenes in a different order,
plus quite a good rendering of "Newman" from Seinfeld, an
unecessarily heart-rending song about being abandoned by your
owner, and endless scenes of Tom Hanks shouting. You do get
"Luxo Jr" as a short, though we'd rather see "Knick Knack"...
otherwise there's a bunch of low-rent Brit shit - Shane
"Twentyfourseven" Meadows' Midlands Grange Hill-alike A ROOM
FOR ROMEO BRASS (whose poster implies it's "just pants"), plus
Craig Ferguson's unhilarious hairdresser mock-docu THE BIG
TEASE (MPAA: rated R for profanity, homosexual themes)... so,
although we don't have high hopes for it, we'd go for trashy
William "The Tingler" Castle remake THE HOUSE ON HAUNTED HILL
(http://www.capalert.com/capreports/ : asylum madness with
knife "surgery"; firearm threats, including to the head;
unseen threat throughout most of story; kissing a woman that
is implied to be dead; multiple nudity; multiple excessive
cleavage/breast exposure; vulgar touching; bizarre and evil-
looking/sounding introduction; invisible force operating
computer; murder by an evil manifestation; murder with several
pencils through the neck)...
RED BOOK AUDIO>> hasn't been much on the soundalike pop front
for a while - copyists no doubt stunned into silence by the
sheer blatantness of R KELLY'S "If I Could Turn Back Time"
tribute to the Righteous Brothers' "Unchained Melody"... but,
in a brand new first-ever *double* link-up rip-off, ANDREAS
JOHNSON'S "Glorious" closely resembles a Swedish cover of the
Manics' "Design For Life", while the Manics' own impassioned
rant against object-oriented programming, "The Masses Against
The Classes", is curiously reminiscent of Ultravox's "Hymn"
(you know: "The power and the glory/ til my kingdom comes!"
http://foxleap.fortunecity.com/hymn_ultravox.mid )... in other
pop news, we can't remember what that collaboration between
Limp Bizkit and Method Man is called, but we're fairly certain
it features sound samples from Defender... never mind the hoo-
ha about William Orbit's "Pieces In A Modern Style" previously
hitting the shops about 5 years ago - now that Daphne And
Celeste's "Ooh Stick You" has (at last!) been released,
Servalan from Blake's Seven [NTK 1999-09-10] has mysteriously
disappeared from the video! Well, either that or NTK teeny-pop
correspondent NICK DRAGE *hallucinated the entire thing*...
speaking of which, the nation still eagerly awaits the radical
cyber-rock of LYSERGIC DOWNLOAD, as plugged extensively in
January's Time Out (and nowhere else) - the band who've worked
out (you've guessed it) "how to communicate the effects of
hallucinogenic substances... through a modem". Assuming they
actually exist, they should register lysergicdownload.org (or
.com) pretty sharpish; it would be "unfortunate" if their
anarchic anti-music biz stance included using legal threats to
evict squatters from their domain name... back with the
soundalikes, first-time caller JOHN HARTNUP reveals that "When
johnny-come-lately girl band Atomic Kitten generously invite
you to 'Give It To Me Slowly'", it "doesn't half" remind him
of the Communards' "Never Can Say Goodbye"... while,
concluding our "suggestive girl bands" strand, XY-rockers
HEPBURN have notably failed to provide a satisfactory lyrical
interpretation of their "Deep Deep Down" track, fuelling net
speculation that it "might be about oral sex"...
>> SMALL PRINT <<
Need to Know is a useful and interesting UK digest of things that
happened last week or might happen next week. You can read it
on Friday afternoon or print it out then take it home if you have
nothing better to do. It is compiled by NTK from stuff they get sent.
Registered at the Post Office as "skewed wags"
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