_ _ _____ _ __ <*the* weekly high-tech sarcastic update for the uk>
| \ | |_ _| |/ / _ __ __2000-09-22_ o join! mail an empty message to
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|_| \_| |_| |_|\_\|_| |_|\___/ \_/\_/ o http://www.ntk.net/ "This is a new area for us, Windows-based products have not
traditionally been associated with Defense
Department-specific mission-critical applications..."
- KEITH HODSON, scarily-titled "Microsoft Government Spokesman",
launches the US Navy's new Win2K-powered aircraft carrier
...as proved by the fact that we're all still here
>> HARD NEWS <<
Andrew Simmons - or John Doe #13 as he's known to the DVD
CCA - still has his DEMON INTERNET site untouched by the
long arm of the Movie Industry police: but reports that
other Demon subscribers have felt the hot-breath of Jack
Valenti on their neck. This month, the MPAA's lawyers sent
out a threatening legal letter to Thus, demanding that an
unnamed subscriber's DeCSS mirror be smashed - and for a few
moments it looked like the litigation-shy ISP was going to
capitulate. Provide proof that you have permission to
publish the material within five days, roiled the standard
e-mail, or lose your site. Well, ahem, replied the customer:
please note that a) DeCSS is as public domain as you can
get, b) those scary statues the MPAA cite all appear to have
the giveaway "U.S." at the beginning of them, and c) I'm a
founding Demon subscriber, you ungrateful curs. Demon didn't
take it further; we hope that this acts as a hint to any
future ISPs who might get fidgety under the MPAA's gaze. If
Demon hasn't nodded yet, maybe you don't have to either.
- Oxford University? You reading this?
- if being cited in the Californian court case wasn't cool enough...
- Simmons would win on Falco points alone
BRITISH TELECOM, ever happy to be in accordance with
prophecy [NTK 1999-07-09] continue to mope over that local
loop unbundling, muttering that nobody's allowed in until
the rooms are tidier. Especially, as it turns out, the more
lucrative (sorry, "crowded") exchanges. Before you can bring
your mucky feet in here, reports BBC News' Mark Ward, BT are
demanding extra 17,200 sq metres of anti-static vinyl
flooring, 2,500 smoke detectors, 1,700 "kickproof" security
doors, and somebody to clear up all the porn mags that are
lying around. Co-locating in BT's exchanges is turning out
to be like some student flat-share from hell: a feeling now
confirmed by the telco's suggestion that fights over who
gets the best rooms be sorted out by a Single Transferable
Vote system, which BT apparently studied last term in
Politics. This system ends up with BT throwing dice to sort
out deadlocks. And what's wrong with a good old game of Spin
the Bottle, then?
- and haven't they had over a year to clean up before the guests arrive?
- It's called "Bow Wave Process": let us steam ahead with broadband
- while we leave you in our wake...
Sadly, it's too late for such shenanigans to affect one cut-
throat competition, as Demon, Pipex and CIX fight it out for
the "Best Business ISP" accolade at the first-ever UK NET
AWARDS (next Thu 2000-09-28, Natural History Museum), the
latest embarrassing attempt by FUTURE PUBLISHING, sorry, THE
FUTURE NETWORK to rebrand itself as an exciting new-media
company. Rivalling even the Yell Awards for "Dullest Web Line-
Up Of The Year", the categories alone make hilarious reading:
"E-Company of the Year. For the company that shows the best
understanding of the new economy and the rules of business in
the 21st century. Nominees: The Easy Group, Virgin, Egg".
Still, it's good to see that the 6 (out of 17) category
sponsors which, 10 days ago, remained "to be confirmed" have
now been revealed as none other than: .Net, Internet Works,
Internet Advisor, Internet Investor, Business 2.0, and Cre@te
Online - 6 of Future's own magazines!
- "Best Portal: For portals and search engines." Christ.
>> ANTI-NEWS <<
berating the obvious
believes it would take "25 years" to copy 2 Gigs via floppy -
a doddering one disk every six-and-a-half days... fashionable
F MAGAZINE expects users to read giant F'ing disclaimer:
http://www.fmagazine.com/registration/disclaimer.html ... free
AOL CD in last Friday's Evening Standard instructs you to
"Insert the enclosed CD in your hard drive"... will the public
*ever* tire of inappropriate graphics appearing on a JILL
DANDO page? http://www.ntk.net/2000/09/22/dohdando.jpg ...
(presumably it "originated" in someone's kidneys) - VS:
http://www.ntk.net/2000/09/22/spitfire-wee.jpg ... CNN fails
to grasp point of MP3s, offers 48MB WAV in Napster article:
ftp://internet.hasbrointeractive.com/anonftp/ - a little more
"interactive" than HASBRO intended?... PLAYBOY sponsor JAZZ
festival: http://www.news-press.com/news/today/000919playboy.html >> EVENT QUEUE <<
goto's considered non-harmful
Oh my god, they've put back GEEK PRIDE SAN FRANCISCO *again* -
to 2000-12-01, pushing it further into the wintry depths that
last year saw it ultimately postponed to the following spring.
"There's a Linux show in Atlanta that ends on [Oct] 13th,"
recounts the apologetic organiser, "so the sponsors [read:
sinister Andover keiretsu] asked for a change and we said
'Sure!'" Closer to home (and closer to now), London's frankly
deranged CREATING SPARKS arts 'n' sciences festival staggers
to a close with what seems to be an entire week of identical-
sounding plays about medical ethics and, as we're sure those
wack dudes at Ninfomania would want us to mention, a
performance and workshop from "one of Germany's most
interesting hip hop bands", ZENTRIFUGAL (2000-09-25/26,
Imperial College), inviting you to "feel the rhythm and
discover the humour in the German language".
- (unconfirmed) line-up includes Winer, Agre, Dawson, us
- *rock* me, Amadeus!
>> TRACKING <<
sufficiently advanced technology : the gathering
Grapple-hooking into the office at midnight to fix the
broken Linux box before management realises it's now running
the entire business? Only room in the catsuit for the *one*
floppy? Yeah, us too: and since that unpleasantness last
time, we're sticking to the simple, useful, mildly cooler
TOM'S ROOT BOOT Linux-on-a-3-and-a-halfshell. Oh sure,
you've got your fancier picoLinuxen and your Linux Router
Project derivatives elsewhere, but only Tom's distribution
manages to combine a 2.0.37 kernel, network card mods,
pcmcia, ftp/wget'ish downloader, and more rescue utils than
you really want to think about right now. And if you need
anything else, Tom's root boot is almost elementary to
unravel and knit with your own additions. Now, all we need
is some way to get past the laser sensor array.
- Discordian date generator included!
- and while we're messing with your head
>> MEMEPOOL <<
hasta la altavista
ok, so how about a "Hack http://www.hacksdmi.org/" challenge?
... home to the acclaimed "My Name Is: FRANK BUTCHER":
http://geocities.com/SunsetStrip/Stadium/1123/ ... LUMLEY
faces final curtain: http://www.clickmango.com/joanna.html ...
LEGO fans live up to their famed "party machine" reputation:
but is http://www.geocities.com/droideka13/QueenAmidala.html
anatomically correct for those "Anakin and Amidala" games?...
http://www.lycos.co.uk/service/sms/eingabe.html works with
LYNX, Germans... hey, they've done a great job on the woman
with the dog: http://www.summum.org/mummification/pets/ ...
not the lucrative ANOTHER.COM spin-off everyone was expecting:
http://www.datapimp.com/ ... gay experts' get-together:
... just-for-fun caption compo ("Is it safe?" - Marathon Man):
>> GEEK MEDIA <<
the less sold-out www.tvgohome.com TV>> in the unlikely event that you're not getting enough of
Craig Charles's jailbreak attempts every weeknight on C5, he
turns up with a different blonde co-presenter - Julia Reed
from Sky's "Sky Rocket" and ".tv" channel - in the new run of
ROBOT WARS (6.45pm, Fri, BBC2), as well as god-knows-which
season of the apparently interminable RED DWARF (10pm, Fri,
BBC2)... the ever-amusing Will Self guests on ROOM 101 (9pm,
Fri, BBC2), while Daphne and Celeste - counting as one choice
- appear on NEVER MIND THE BUZZCOCKS (9.30pm, Fri, BBC2) -
though would it be funnier if it was the other way around?...
David Suchet hijacks a plane with a Psion PDA, as the
preposterous EXECUTIVE DECISION (8.50pm, Fri, ITV) gets its
second outing in 15 months... and inheriting the much-prized
accolade of "the only bit of the 11 O'Clock Show that wasn't
shit", you're invited to MEET RICKY GERVAIS (11.05pm, Fri,
C4)... C4 builds an "Animation Night" around Simpsons-in-Space
toon FUTURAMA (9.35pm, Sat) and a tangentially-themed "look at
animated scenes from games that were deemed too racy" edition
of BITS (12.50am, Sat)... tough call against perhaps the only
reason to subscribe to On Digital, LETTERMAN NIGHT (from 8pm,
Sat, ITV2)... while C5 hits back with its bi-annual ABBA DAY
(from 12.40pm, Sun)... LOUIS THEROUX'S WEIRD WEEKENDS (9pm,
Mon, BBC2) is mildly amusing, we suppose, but even he admits
"he'd rather be Tom Green"... they promised humourless "This
Life" new-media Nathan-drama ATTACHMENTS (9pm, Tue, BBC2)
wouldn't be this year's "Killer Net" - but just in case, eh?
http://www.ntk.net/attachments/ ... up against TERMINATOR 2:
JUDGEMENT DAY (9pm, Wed, C5), last shown on BBC1 in May...
"Woody Allen Wednesday" continues with SCENES FROM A MALL
(12.35am, Wed, ITV)... and count the times late-night book-
look PULP (1.55am, Thu, C4) implies "comics aren't just for
kids", when they meet Warren "Transmetropolitan" Ellis -
while, hopefully, not overlooking his excellent recent work
on "The Authority"...
FILM>> "The Right Stuff" docks gracefully with "Apollo 13"
while dodging tantalising bits of debris from "Event Horizon",
in competent Clint Eastwood orbiting-OAPs big-screen sci-fi
SPACE COWBOYS (http://www.capalert.com : [numerous spoilers,
alarming technological insights]; porn mag picture (from the
60s); multiple rear male nudity; actors exposing themselves to
an actress; a woman in men's locker room with inviting manners
of the male)... bad-taste maestros the Farrellys predictably
reunite with hyperactive Jim Carrey in schizophrenia-
misdiagnosis split-personality slapstick MY, MYSELF AND IRENE
(http://www.cndb.com : "[Carrey] gets revenge by walking onto
his neighbours' lawn with his paper, squatting down and taking
a shit. When he pulls down his pants and underwear, we get a
quick peek at his penis and balls. This slip was almost
definitely by accident, and will be hard to spot in cinemas";
"after a great cleavage shot, Jim Carrey, as twisted alter-ego
Hank, suprises [Shannon Whirry] who's breastfeeding her baby
by putting his mouth in place of the baby's, sucking on her
breast... you see no nipple and due to the graphic nature of
the scene almost certainly a prosthetic boob was used")...
otherwise: those stuck-up schmucks behind "This Life" have
produced - at last! - a feature-length version of that hideous
dinner-party ad for the Renault Scenic, seemingly based on the
imagined phonetic similarity between the phrases "I love you"
and "ELEPHANT JUICE" (http://www.bbfc.co.uk : Passed '18' for
one strong drug scene and sex)... or Ron "Tin Cup" re-teams
with Woody "White Men Can't Jump" Harrelson for Las Vegas
road-trip fighting-over-a-woman buddy-flick PLAY IT TO THE
BONE (http://www.capalert.com : exaggerated boxing violence;
mockeries of Jesus and Christianity (many); pornographic talk,
sounds, motions, positioning while begging for sex; sexual
intercourse, with and without nudity plus lesbian intercourse
and digital intercourse; cohabitation)...
DRILY IRONIC T-SHIRT CONTEST UPDATE>> entries have been
flooding in for our innovative help-NTK-design-its-own-
merchandise competition, which is hugely reassuring seeing as
we've yet to finalise the rules/ royalty scheme/ closing date
or any annoying details like that. Perhaps inspired by the
open-source efforts of http://geekshirts.sourceforge.net/ ,
GARY CARROLL queried our original "we'll sell the best ones
and give the designers some of the money" plan, suggesting
"How's about making the designs available as jpegs and letting
[us] print our own T-shirts using our cute little inkjet
printers, thereby promoting NTK's twisted truth seeking with
reduced expense and contribution to global capitalism?" Well
Gary, that option will be entirely up to the individual
winning designers (apparently people get quite excited about
being told they *have* to open source their stuff nowadays)...
in other intellectual property news, we're still negotiating
with the vast "Zeppotron" media conglomerate over whether you
can use "TVGoHome" concepts and/or characters, like the "I'm
With Nathan Barley" entry from http://www.growf.org/shirts/ ,
though you should get away with obvious bastardisations of,
say, the NTL logo - http://www.bhikku.co.uk/shirt.htm , for
instance. Bold irreverence towards NTK itself is encouraged,
as in http://www.mitt.demon.co.uk/tshirt/satyre.png (from
JAMES "MOOSE" BROWN, increasingly believed to be the anonymous
swearing-obsessed plaintiff from last week's issue), though
reliance on yet-to-be-devised printing technologies may hinder
your application: http://tv.cream.org/gorilla/ntkt/ ... and,
finally, attempting to divine the assumed rulebase from all
the other entries you've sent in, it appears that you *can*
simply submit a text slogan - the most notable so far being
the succinct "British E-commerce: R.I.P.", from someone who
knows a thing or two about futuristic capitalism, IAN "ELITE"
BELL - although please make sure you mark your entry "T-shirt
Contest", so as to differentiate it from all the tips mail we
get from people unsuccessfully trying to unsubscribe, or
misunderstanding how the search box works. Keep 'em coming!...
>> 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
"'Eel' is my middle name"
NEED TO KNOW
THEY STOLE OUR REVOLUTION. NOW WE'RE STEALING IT BACK.
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