As opposed to the bullish media-downloading market, naval piracy is way down compared to normal. In the last quarter, there were only 41 incidents of pirate activity compared to last year’s 61. The numbers itself are not that interesting but the way in which the international community analyzes and manages piracy is really cool. The pirate-control group is the “International Maritime Bureau”:http://www.icc-ccs.org/imb/overview.php part of “International Chamber of Commerce”:http://www.iccwbo.org/. View the IMB’s latest piracy report “here”:http://www.icc-ccs.org/main/news.php?newsid=83.
Caracas law enforcement officials, hoping to lower their world’s worst crime rates, have bought 3 mini-airships equipped with cameras to look down on the city. The 50-ft long (15 m) vessels will be operated by remote control from a brand-new zeppelin command center in downtown Caracas, the capital of Venezuela. Apparently to further to deter crime, the floating camera platforms will be painted with phrases like “We watch over you for your security” in red letters. Big Brother references aside (it’s just too easy) maybe this will actually help the city to overcome its horrendous public safety records. The murder rates were so high that the government apparently stopped publishing the records last year.
More about the zeppelins at “the BBC”:http://news.bbc.co.uk/2/hi/americas/6576413.stm. The picture is Venezuelan President Hugo Chavez.
In a move that only someone completely devoid of a sense of irony could think of, Home Secretary John Reid has ordered that some of Britain’s 4 million (count ’em) CCTV cameras also be equipped with the power of speech. Sound like 1984? Check out this picture that’s been floating around the blogosphere of all the cameras around George Orwell’s former residence. Also, there is no way that anyone could write this story up better than “these guys”:http://www.theinquirer.net/default.aspx?article=38718 at “The Inquirer,”:http://www.theinquirer.net check it out.
Rarely will you see the adult entertainment industry and religious groups in “relative agreement”:http://www.cbc.ca/technology/story/2007/03/26/tech-porn.html, but strong lobbying by both camps influenced “today’s decision”:http://www.cnn.com/2007/TECH/internet/03/30/domain.xxx.ap/index.html?eref=rss_tech by Internet Corporation for Assigned Names and Numbers to reject creating .xxx domains for online pornography sites. The adult entertainment industry feared that having .xxx domains would make it easier for governments censor and control content, while religious groups believed that creating such domains would greatly increase the amount of graphic sexual content on the internet. Internet politics too makes strange bedfellows.
A gentleman in Salt Lake City, Utah has been disconnected from his Comcast broadband service for using too much of his unlimited bandwidth. He’s documenting everything on his “blog”:http://comcastissue.blogspot.com/ and you know what, he’s got a point. If corporations don‚Äôt actually define the terms of their service, it’s very hard to make an educated decision about what companies to patronize. (via “The Inquirer”:http://www.theinquirer.net/default.aspx?article=37565)
Getting off the commuter train in Gunma, Japan, an un-named man got into an idling police car and drove himself almost all of the way home. Don”t believe me? Check it out: article.
In February 2005 a student at Penn State was the victim of an errant stuffed moose head that formerly hung on the wall above her. Since then she’s sued the university for a number of silly things. For more about the story and my reaction to it check out: Where our Legal System Breaks Down in the Opinions section on my website.