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  Uncle Sam wants your grocery lists:  
Posted 2002-11-22 by Tony Walsh
 "A massive database that the [U.S.] government will use to monitor every purchase made by every American citizen is a necessary tool in the war on terror, the Pentagon said Wednesday."

I suppose the idea is to correlate purchases with other records to determine the likelihood of someone being a terrorist threat. Buy too much computer equipment? Cyberterrorist. Buy too much bleach and ammonia? Chemical warrior. Stock up on groceries, batteries, and bottled water? Dirty bomber. Perhaps the American government can work together with manufacturers of consumer goods to create a "safe list" of approved purchase types and quantities, then citizens in good standing can apply to purchase those items. Hey, if you're not a criminal you have nothing to fear, right?
  1 comments’s advertisements become editorial content:  
Posted 2002-11-20 by Tony Walsh
What the hell is this? It seems Canada's "digital culture" journal might be bending over just a little bit (*cough*) for advertisers. "Mini Car, Big Mystery" headlines a multi-part article that appears to be nothing more than a commercial tie-in for the MINI Cooper S.
I didn't go to J-school, but isn't it bad form for a magazine to utterly blur the lines between advertising and editorial content? Isn't running this multi-part "article" without designating it as the advertisement that it is a little... uhhh... Shifty? I mean, sheesh, that's about as bad as wedding McDonald's and The Sims Online or something, isn't it?

EDIT: A source at confirmed that the Mini articles are indeed advertorial. The designation as such was said to have been removed at the request of the advertiser. BLEH!
  Hey, I’m no scientist…  
Posted 2002-11-19 by Tony Walsh
Thanks to Dr. Quigley for pointing out DHMO is water. Now, before you knuckleheads start blathering about my lousy journalism skills, take a careful read of yesterday's post. I use words such as "supposedly causes," and "apparently." I even state "'s case against the compound is not presented very well" and suggest that the material on the anti-DHMO site could be fabricated. I think that covers me pretty well, not to mention none of my potential detractors posted yesterday to point out the obvious :)
  What’s a DHMO?  
Posted 2002-11-18 by Tony Walsh
DHMO, or Dihydrogen Monoxide, is a chemical compound that supposedly causes thousands of deaths and multi-millions of dollars in environmental damage. Apparently, its uses are many, including not only industrial and military, but as a food additive. DHMO is said to be included in such consumables as baby food, beer, and coffee. Web site points to the compound's dangers, as well as a possible conspiracy involving the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency.'s case against the compound is not presented very well, and includes the disclaimer "content veracity not implied," which I'm pretty sure means "this could all be a big fat lie." [link>russ]
  Trustworthy Computing  
Posted 2002-11-14 by Tony Walsh
The solution to pre-WinXP operating system security: buy WindowsXP.
  So, who is tracking your websurfing?  
Posted 2002-11-12 by
Some people might call it being paranoid, but there are people out to get you. And they are advertisers. And they don't play fair.
Using virus-like programs, they track where you surf, use your computer resources for their gain and sell your info to other companies.
Try out Ad-aware to see if they have anything on your computer. I'm a pretty savvy computer user (or so i think) and i was surprised how many of these things it found. It's free, and very useful!
  Trustworthy Computing  
Posted 2002-11-01 by Tony Walsh
A software flaw makes Win2k and WinXP vulnerable to denial of service (DOS) attacks. [story]

In related news, the rulings in the Micro$oft antitrust trial are due today...
  The newsprint fist.  
Posted 2002-11-01 by Tony Walsh
It's not so much what the media does report, it's what it doesn't.
  Freedom of choice?  
Posted 2002-10-30 by Tony Walsh
Eagle Scout Darrell Lambert is about to be kicked out of the Seattle Boy Scouts for being a damned dirty ape atheist. "In 2000, the U.S. Supreme Court upheld the Boy Scouts' right as a private organization to ban certain members. The Scouts exclude atheists and gays." [story]
  You don’t need to see our identification…  
Posted 2002-10-30 by Tony Walsh
Canadians who were born in Pakistan, Saudi Arabia, Yemen, Iran, Iraq, Libya, Sudan or Syria will be processed differently than other Canadians at the U.S. border. Canadian citizens born in Iran, Iraq, Libya, Sudan or Syria are now required to be photographed and fingerprinted due to a new U.S. law. Certainly it's understandable that America fears terrorists are at the gates. I just think it's unfortunate that Americans will now be require people of certain races and nationalities to be registered, recorded, and filed away.

Our government has issued a travel advisory for these "suspect" groups following the deportation of a Syrian-born Canadian accused of terrorist ties back to Syria. It's a shame this guy wasn't deported to Canada, where his wife and two kids live. Instead, he's in jail in Syria. [story]
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