About Those Unencumbered Video Formats

The Free Software Foundation tells us the H.264 AVCHD video encoding standard violates the very tenets of freedom, they claim competitors such as VP8/WebM and Ogg Theora are both unencumbered and technically equal to H.264. What they really mean is that software patents are evil. Now the MPEG LA, the body that administers the H.264 patents and […] » about 400 words

Open Source Software and Libraries; LTR 43.3, Finally

The most selfish thing about submitting a manuscript late is asking “When is it going to be out?” So I’ve been waiting quietly, rather than trouble Judi Lauber, who did an excellent job editing and managing the publication. Ryan and Jessamyn each contributed a chapter, and I owe additional thank yous to the full chorus […] » about 400 words

“Smart Networks” Are A Stupid-Bad Idea

This story in MIT Technology Review scares me. Instead of letting all computers within the network communicate freely, Ethane is designed so that communication privileges within the network have to be explicitly set; that way, only those activities deemed safe are permitted. “With hindsight, it’s a very obvious thing to do,” McKeown says. No matter […] » about 600 words

The Perils Of Flickr’s “May Offend” Button

Quite a while ago now, stepinrazor asked people to do some self-censorhip in a post in the Flickr Ideas forum. FlyButtafly quickly joined the discussion, noting that she’d encountered some material she found offensive in pictures from other Flickr members: “as I’m going through the pictures, one shows up of a protestor holding a sign […] » about 1300 words

Radical, Militant Librarian

The ALA’s Intellectual Freedom folks came up with this Radical, Militant Librarian button (which I found in Library Mistress’ photostream): In recognition of the efforts of librarians to help raise awareness of the overreaching aspects of the USA PATRIOT Act, the American Library Association (ALA) Office for Intellectual Freedom (OIF) is offering librarians an opportunity […] » about 200 words

Blogger’s Legal Guide

Copyfight is pointing to the EFF‘s new Legal Guide for Bloggers. Most of the content is about liability, but it also addresses issues of access and privilege that are generally granted to journalists, election law, and labor law. From the introduction: Whether you’re a newly minted blogger or a relative old-timer, you’ve been seeing more […] » about 400 words