Posts Tagged ‘Glass Roof’

XKCD Tech Support

24/08/2009

I love Geek humor!

Unexpected Ally

19/08/2009

There are times when the political climate becomes so intense and lines are drawn so starkly one forgets that labels suchs as “liberal”, “conservative”, “left” and “right” are broad categories and not tightly-defined world views. There is much wiggle room in any such label so that principled people can still ascribe to certain political views even if they are opposite to what the majority of one camp believes.

That is the case of Mr Theodore B. Olson, a man most would thoroughly identify with American legal conservatism. He counseled Presidents Ronald Reagan and George W. Bush in such cases as the Florida Vote in 2000 and the counterterrorist policies of post-September 11. Yet he is also a man formed in the 60’s, when the Republican Party and Conservatism in general were not as mingled with the Religious movements as they are now. A strict Constitutionalist, Mr Olson believes no one should be forbidden to marry the person of their choosing — even if it means same-sex marriage. For it would mean that the country treats its citizens differently, discriminating against sexual orientation.

To him, appeals to religion and morality form an “insuficient legal basis” to ban same-sex marriage. He says that he respects the convictions of those who come from this angle, but this should be a civil rights issue.

Liberals and Conservatives alike are surprised when they hear of the old master’s stance on gay marriage. Reactions in both sides vary from suspicion to outright hostility. For me it is a clear example of how we should approach each and every issue — to say nothing of their proponents — strictly based on the arguments, not on political labels or any such empty classifications.

And I, for one, would be honored to have Mr Olson on my side, or as an adversary.

Pensando em nada (ou “no Nada”?)

21/07/2009

In eighteen-century Newtonian mechanics, the three-body problem was insoluble. With the birth of general relativity around 1910 and quantum electrodynamics in 1930, the two- and one-body problems became insoluble. And within modern quantum field theory, the problem of zero bodies (vacuum) is insoluble.”  

— GE Brown, quoted by RD Mattuck, via Wikipedia

Cyberwar Guide for Iranian Elections

16/06/2009

So we all like to exercise our freedom of speech. We love the Internet and we enjoy having the right to vote. Turns out, not everyone is comfortable with giving people a voice – much less having them being heard complaining to all the world their rights are being restricted.

The last rage on Twitter is to follow updates of Iranian bloggers against Mahmoud Ahmadinezhad’s recent re-election. Mind you, they are not protesting against the Theocracy or the regime. They are just sick and tired of Ahmadinezhad and decided to stand up to his goons and protest the apparently rigged elections that kept him in power. Many people over the world (yours truly included) decided the least they could do was RT some of their messages and publish lists of IP addresses the bloggers could use to circumvent government firewalls. Well, maybe it was a bit naïve – people are being arrested or getting killed over there for protesting. For blogging. And sending those re-twitts with IPs on open channels was helping Iranian authorities tracking down the protesters.

So if you really want to help those people, please take the trouble to read this little primer on Cyberwar and spread the good word.