_ _ _____ _ __ <*the* weekly high-tech sarcastic update for the uk>
| \ | |_ _| |/ / _ __ __2003-10-10_ o join! sign up at
| \| | | | | ' / | '_ \ / _ \ \ /\ / / o http://lists.ntk.net/
| |\ | | | | . \ | | | | (_) \ v v / o website (+ archive) lives at:
|_| \_| |_| |_|\_\|_| |_|\___/ \_/\_/ o http://www.ntk.net/ "Lewis said [VeriSign] needs to make money from new services
such as Site Finder, or it will not be able to protect the
Net's critical infrastructure. He cited a hacker's attack on
the domain name system last year, in which VeriSign servers
remained relatively unscathed - largely because of the
'substantial amount of capital we've had to invest,' he said."
...Nice internet you've got here. Be a shame if something
"happened" to it...
>> HARD NEWS <<
no cause to enthuse
Well, we're into those last precious days of freedom before
the EUCD gets implemented in the UK. The final
implementation, signed off by Parliament last Friday (yes,
we missed it too), now makes time-shifting TV shows only
legal "for domestic use", bans practically anything else,
and puts the DMCA-like clampers on breaking copyright
protection. Except, that is, for "the purposes of research
into cryptography" - which just goes to show that even the
government is scared of Ross Anderson's wrath. Even then,
you're doomed if you affect "prejudicially the rights of the
copyright owner". Clearing out the cupboards, then, here's
that code we mentioned last week that shows the weakness of
Network Solution's whois captcha tech. And if they can't
protect the public's domain database, can we really trust
them with its misspellings?
- worse to tell you on this topic
- last hurrahs not indicative of guilt
- it's the shift key! press the SHIFT K- NO CARRIER
Highlight of this week's LONDON LINUX EXPO (well, apart from
the guy who'd signed in as something like "IP enforcement
officer, SCO") - all the dedicated Linux evangelists who'd got
as far as persuading their mums to use Mozilla, only to find
them subsequently thrown out of respectable high-street store
sites like Marks and Spencer ("optimised for use with the most
popular browsers - IE5, Netscape 6.1, AOL browser version 5.0
and above"). Even less excusable - as it's directly funded by
your taxes - is this month's new contender for a Usability
Makeover: the Department for Work and Pensions JOBCENTRE PLUS,
whose Jobsearch feature is variously described by Yosser
Hughes-like NTK readers as "a horrible attempt to reinvent the
wheel" and "breaking Moz, Firebird, perhaps Opera too?".
Though unemployed layabout ASHLEY POMEROY spoiled it somewhat
by going on to point out that "The Welsh language version is
amusing because Welsh looks like Klingon, and the thought of
unemployed Klingons working behing the counter at Tesco makes
me smile, and I shall put this to the people in Tesco next
time I go there, yes I shall, I shall liken them to Klingons".
- vs http://www.jobcentreplus.gov.uk/cms.asp?Page=/Welshhttp://www.marksandspencer.com/disallowed.html
- do the shops still not accept credit cards either?
- apparently he does something similar "at all the shows"
Though to be honest, our current favourite Webscraper has to be
PUBLIC WHIP, which is what happens when you slam Hansard and
MATLAB together very hard. Find out the latest votes, how your
MP voted, their attendance record, watch for backbench
rebellions, and then see them all crammed into little
behavioural clusters via a compact java applet. Apart from the
cheap thrill for us of recommending some obsessive-compulsive
hack-the-democracy site that hasn't just been slapped up by our
mates, it should also prove invaluable for those who don't want
to see another EUCD sneak by without a whisper of complaint.
Now all it needs is other people to scrape it for their own
single-issue obsessed sites. Power to the meta-meta-people!
- information wants to be plotted in colour doodads
- if you tolerate this: your pizza could be next
>> ANTI-NEWS <<
berating the obvious
(also a popular Google goof) "And about time too - she's
hideous!": http://www.ntk.net/2003/10/10/dohbeaut.gif vs
... not the best week for Reebok to be running its WHODUNIT?
campaign: http://www.b3ta.com/board/2118710 ... not what footy
needs right now: http://www.ntk.net/2003/10/10/dohpubic.gif
... more placeholder hilarity: http://www.proscript.co.uk/ ...
crack http://www.encrypta.com/company.htm 's secret message
(bottom of page)... help ROBIN COOK choose his favourite
integers: http://www.robincook.org.uk/cook/rc_pollstn.asp ...
2x missing millions: http://www.ntk.net/2003/10/10/doh15v1.gif
vs http://www.ntk.net/2003/10/10/doh15v2.gif ... excessive
emphasising (from "Important" on) implies it's all YOUR fault:
... hit "Cancel" to teach child of their insignificance in
wider scheme of things: http://www.toweroflondontour.com/kids/
... http://forum.edge-online.com/ flaunts insider credentials
... http://www.joinarnold.com/en/agenda/arnoldsviews.php#hh1 -
VY DIDDEN YOU LISTEN DER FIRST TIME?...
>> EVENT QUEUE <<
goto's considered non-harmful
Now located - without a hint of irony - in one of the old SGI
buildings on Shoreline Blvd, the Mountain View Computer
History Museum hosts its sixth VINTAGE COMPUTER FESTIVAL AND
BOOK SALE this weekend (9.30am-6pm, Sat & Sun 2003-10-11 & 12,
corner of Highway 101 and Shoreline, California 94043, $5).
Highlights include "operating Xerox Altos and D* machines", a
"retro-code videogame programming challenge" (Atari 800, C64,
and Apple 2), plus "over 15" computer history lectures, though
the scariest thing we saw when we were there was the (non-
functioning) Cray 2 cooled by fluorinert, a liquid also used
as an artificial substitute for human blood plasma. Somewhat
closer to home, NTK reader/ former PC games reviewer MIL
MILLINGTON will be launching his followup to "Things My
Girlfriend And I Have Argued About", neurological rom-com
novel A CERTAIN CHEMISTRY at his local Wolverhampton branch of
Waterstones (7pm, Mon 2003-10-10, 13-15 Victoria Street,
Wolverhampton, UKP3, "for Tickets, phone: 01902 427219") - a
gesture of defiance to all those modern multimedia artists who
just waltz into a month-long residency at the ICA without
working their way up through the Northern working men's
galleries and book readings like you had to in the old days.
- introduced/ interrupted by NTK's very own "Dave Green"
- Rich Herring also gets his book out, from Tue
- hey, http://www.vintage.org/2003/main/ seemed to be down
- another Scrambling for Safety event in a couple of weeks
>> TRACKING <<
sufficiently advanced technology : the gathering
Although YAML's Perlish originators might choke on the idea,
this standard looks to be the Python of markup. Designed to
be human-readable and human-editable, it eschews all those
pointy bracketed, no whitespace, entity-escaping of those
weird SGML mongrels. Instead, it's all indents and
linebreaks - perfect for configuration files and data-
dumping. There are now YAML writers and parsers for Perl,
Python, Java, Ruby and C. And it's about as rebellious as
- YAML ain't a Markup Language
- but syck is, in fact, syck
>> MEMEPOOL <<
contains a source of http://snackspot.org/ Speccy emulator - for ZX81: http://www.chuntey.com/SP81/ ...
thanks, that ought to do it: http://www.blaine-appeal.co.uk/
... Mmm, cookie - accepted!: http://www.jibble.org/cookies.php
- vs "I used the iterator once [...] and it [doesn't] seem to
work": http://www.c2.com/cgi/wiki?ExternalIterator ... time to
start the petition for "Star Wars kid" as the next "Dr Who":
technicolor phrenology ... this week's Amazon insomnia-cure:
this week's WWW insomnia-cure: www.britishparking.co.uk/ ...
http://www.montalk.net/potter.html : "Harry Potter - An
Introduction Into 4th Density?" - apparently from the site
that brought you "TELETUBBIES: Nazi Hybrid Greys in Disguise":
http://www.angelfire.com/mt/montalk/teletubbies.html ... fresh
from Museum of Techno - surely can't be Paul Oakenfold, can
it?: http://www.ntk.net/2003/10/10/superstarsremix.mp3 (4 meg
MP3, long breakdown section believed to be space for Madonna's
"Vogue"-style rap: "Daley Thompson, and Geoff Capes/ Officials
with their measuring tapes")...
>> GEEK MEDIA <<
get out less
TV>> worried that bad guys might start to recognise him from
off the telly, MACINTYRE UK UNDERCOVER (9pm, Fri, C5) sends
Donal's similar-looking brother into residential care homes -
not to be confused with would-be "Colditz" remake P.O.W. (9pm,
Fri, ITV)... GRUMPY OLD MEN (9.50pm, Fri, BBC2) appears to be
a celebrity talking heads version of "Room 101" featuring Bob
Geldof, John Peel, Will Self etc, who should ideally conclude
the show by following the example of the original fuel-tax
protestors in CONVOY (12.15am, Fri, BBC1)... as the "American"
sequence of films - "Psycho", "Beauty", "Pie", "Gigolo",
"Graffiti", "Werewolf In London" - takes an even more violent
turn in Ed Norton's AMERICAN HISTORY X (10.55pm, Sat, C4)...
FIGHTBOX (7.30pm, Mon-Fri, BBC3) is "the new Robot Wars", from
EC1-based web design house Bomb.co.uk... fans of adolescent
inanity are well-catered to by the likes of "too hot for
school's programmes" TEEN BIG BROTHER: THE EXPERIMENT (10pm,
Mon-Fri, C4), Adam Sandler golfing goof-off HAPPY GILMORE
(11.25pm, Mon, ITV), plus feature-length workplace health and
safety violation COYOTE UGLY (9pm, Wed, ITV)... while both
Marisa "Freddy Got Fingered" Coughlan memetic slasher GOSSIP
(11.10pm, Mon, C4) and Brittany Murphy virgin-murderer CHERRY
FALLS (11.15pm, Wed, BBC1) came out the very same week in the
UK: http://www.ntk.net/index.cgi?b=02000-08-25&l=198#l ... the
"Wife Swap" format goes intriguingly off the rails in WHEN
MICHAEL PORTILLO BECAME A SINGLE MUM (9pm, Wed, BBC2) - while
the single mum in question is off being MP for Kensington and
Chelsea?... the author of Quatermass is profiled in THE KNEALE
TAPES (9.30pm, Wed, BBC4), followed by psychometric sci-fi THE
STONE TAPE (10.10pm, Wed, BBC4)... though only Londoners get
to see RACE AROUND THE UNDERGOUND (7.30pm, Thu, ITV), an
attempt at the tube-traversing challenge documented, in vivid
detail, by that guy who does the unofficial Fox's biscuits fan
page: http://www.geofftech.co.uk/tubechallenge/ ...
FILM>> good enough for you to forgive both the smaller breasts
in "Knick Knack" http://www.metafilter.com/mefi/26116 *and* a
mildly annoying performance from Ellen DeGeneres, it's FINDING
NEMO ( http://www.capalert.com/capreports/findingnemo.htm :
series of posterior references and jokes/comments by young
adolescents; adolescent defiance; suggestion of flatulence)...
otherwise a shamefully limited release for low-budget social-
mobility-myth braces-and-glasses junior geek docu SPELLBOUND
( http://www.bbfc.co.uk/ : contains one use of mild language)
... in contrast with relatively unreconstructed 1980s-style
necrotising fasciitis cheapo backwoods horror CABIN FEVER
( http://www.cndb.com/movie.html?title=Cabin+Fever+(2003) :
Cerina Vincent the always nude girl from Not Another Teen
Movie, does it again; after, she shaves her legs with
interesting results, then is literally torn apart by this
crazy German Shepherd mix)...
>> 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
"Originated the idea for using figlet" - for anything!
NEED TO KNOW
THEY STOLE OUR REVOLUTION. NOW WE'RE STEALING IT BACK.
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